Fresh As Can Be
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In terms of sustainability and fresh fish, Uncle’s Fish Market & Grill is the “reel” deal. Whether you visit the Pier 38 restaurant for lunch or dinner, you’re sure to get high-quality seafood.
In fact, the restaurant has long been involved with Hawaii’s fishing industry and is located next to Honolulu Fish Auction, so you can rest assured you’re dining on fresh catches, many of which are locally sourced.
“Everything we use here is fresh, not frozen,” confirms owner Bruce Johnson, who adds that the eatery is all about utilizing what’s in season. “About 90 percent (of our seafood) is straight off the boat, and that’s what we pride ourselves in,” he adds. “That’s the guts of Uncle’s — being able to have that fresh fish every day.”
Uncle’s boasts a grand selection of top-notch appetizers and entrees. For starters, go with Ahi Poke Trio ($22), which is a sampler of three different types of poke — Kukui nut pesto ahi poke topped with local fried ogo; Uncle’s homemade fresh ahi poke topped with green onions; and spicy ahi poke topped with fried onions.
Another popular appetizer is Uncle’s Original Poke Tower ($19.50), presenting sushi rice layered with fresh ahi poke, guacamole and ahi tartare. It’s topped with masago and sliced nori and served with white corn chips.
“The poke tower features sashimi-grade ahi that’s cut into poke cubes,” executive chef Geoff Arakawa says. “We also use our own homemade guacamole, and stack everything layer by layer.”
Some of the restaurant’s most popular entrees include Uncle’s Award-Winning Garlic Ahi and Fresh Onaga (both market price).
“For the Garlic Ahi, we use sashimi-grade ahi, sear it and top it off with a brown butter sauce, green and yellow chili peppers, capers, chopped parsley and lots of garlic,” Arakawa explains. “For the onaga, you get two 3-ounce portions — we sauté it and top it off with lobster chunks and oyster mushrooms, a little garlic and sherry wine.”
During your visit, be sure to check out the inviting eatery’s daily specials; currently, Fresh Ama Ebi Linguine ($23 lunch, $28 dinner with salad) is available.
“It’s a Hawaiian deep-sea shrimp, which we catch with our boats,” Johnson says. “The ama ebi is a sweet shrimp. We catch it in really deep water — about 1,800 feet.”
“We sauté the ama ebi with garlic butter and add Chinese and American parsley, basil, capers, some red grape tomatoes and arugula,” Arakawa chimes in. “We also use sake and blend it with spices for the sauce.”
Uncle’s Fish Market & Grill
Fishing Village at Pier 38
1135 N. Nimitz Hwy., Honolulu
Daily, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.