Uncover this hidden gem of a lunch spot
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It’s no secret that hole-inthe-wall plate lunch spots are some of the most adored eateries in Hawaii. One place that ranks particularly high is Kahai Street Kitchen on Coolidge Street, known for serving up local favorites with a gourmet spin.
Head chef David Yamamoto carefully crafts his dishes, completing them with a clean presentation that lends a simple backdrop to bold and familiar flavors.
“I try to do comfort food, but I just do it in a way that is a little more of my style,” he explains.
Yamamoto is a local boy, born and raised here in Honolulu, and he’s been in the restaurant business for over 25 years. His experience is inevitably reflected in the menu, which features dishes like Big Island Grass Fed Sliders Deluxe ($10.75). Three 2-ounce Angus burgers are charbroiled and served with crispy bacon, Pepper Jack cheese, lettuce and tomatoes on Hawaiian-style sweet rolls. The sliders come with a chipotle aioli spread as well.
If you’re looking for an alternative to meat, Fresh Baked Furikake Dynamite Crusted Salmon ($11.95) is a great seafood option. Fresh Atlantic salmon is crusted with house-made dynamite sauce, then baked to perfection and drizzled with wasabi aioli and kabayaki sauces. Crispy potato curls sit on top as a nice — and delicious — garnish.
KSK Crab Club House Sandwich ($11.25) is your next lunchtime favorite, as this double-decker sandwich with breaded soft-shell crab is delicately deep-fried to delicious glory. It’s also topped with crispy honey bacon, lettuce, fresh sliced tomatoes and guacamole, and placed on Japanese-style bread that is nice and toasted.
Kahai Street Kitchen has street parking right in front of the restaurant, which Yamamoto notes is easier to snag if you come around 2 p.m. So why not stop by Kahai on your next lunch break?
Kahai Street Kitchen
946 Coolidge St., Moiliili
Tuesday-Friday, 10:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m.; Saturday, 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m