Kaimuki eatery proves to be many locals’ go-to for tasty mealsA La Carte
July 1, 2018
Story By: Yu Shing Ting | Photos by: FILE PHOTOS
Since opening nearly seven years ago, Fair- wood Drive Inn & Pho 27 Cafe continues to build a following for its local favorites, Vietnamese dishes and Hong Kong-style comfort foods.
Conveniently located at Kaimuki Shopping Center (between Long Drugs and Sacred Hearts Academy) with plenty of free parking, the unique two-in-one restaurant is designed with Fairwood Drive Inn in the front (offering quick and easy take-out service) and Pho 27 in the back (a contemporary dine-in Vietnamese and Hong Kong-style cafe).
Owner Tiffany Ko, who is originally from Canton, China, moved to Hawaii in 1998 and opened six different restaurants throughout the island prior to introducing Fairwood on Keeaumoku Street, where it was located for about 18 years before relocating to Kaimuki.
“Many of our old customers followed us to Kaimuki and we thank them so much that after so many years they still come and support us,” notes Ko. “We hope we can make more food for them to enjoy, and more healthy food so they keep coming back. We try our best to make them happy.”
On the menu at Fairwood Drive Inn are sandwiches, burgers, local-style plate lunches, soups, Chinese rice and noodle plates, breakfast foods (served all day) and more.
Among the top sellers are Mapo Tofu, Local Boy (honey garlic chicken, char siu, teriyaki steak, rice and mac salad) and Singapore noodles.
Ko also recommends Fish & Shrimp ($12.95) featuring a complementing combination of fried shrimp and fish fillet, which is served with two scoops of rice and one scoop of mac salad.
There also is the Chinese-style local favorite Salt and Pepper Pork Chops ($12.95) consisting of tender and tasty pork chops that have been marinated overnight, seasoned with salt, pepper, jalapenos and chili pepper, and served with two scoops rice and one scoop mac salad.
On the Pho 27 side, Ko suggests the Lemongrass Chicken ($12.95) over rice or cold rice noodles. “We sell a lot every day,” she explains. “We marinate the chicken overnight with our own lemongrass sauce and seasonings. Also, our Lemongrass Sandwich is very popular, too.”
Pho 27, which was designed by an interior design team from Hong Kong and features custom, handmade light fixtures, also provides a great setting for meetings and parties, and can seat more than 100 people.
The Fairwood side also has become a daily stop for students from nearby schools looking for a tasty after school snack, meal or drink, such as its signature Honey Lemon and Salty Plum drinks, or Milk Tea and Homemade Iced Tea.