Raising The Culinary RoofCover Story
September 16, 2018
Story By: Kyle Galdeira | Photos by: Lawrence Tabudlo
The Brilliant Ox has emerged from the herd as a new star gastropub serving American and local-style cuisine with a host of creative cocktails and craft beers.
Local diners continue to discover and revel in The Brilliant Ox’s creations at Ala Moana Center’s Hookipa Terrace. The spacious restaurant features dark wood tones and subtle lighting, two full bars and a lounge area complete with multiple high-definition TVs to create the ideal pau hana and light-night destination.
“We wanted to create brilliant food and brilliant drinks in a brilliant atmosphere, and we coupled the concept with something fun and memorable, and that’s where the ox with glasses comes in,” explains JC “Moto” Chow, co-owner of The Brilliant Ox. “We really made an effort to incorporate local ingredients throughout the menu, while also keeping up with the latest culinary trends and influences. It’s something new to experience, and we’re in a great location at Ala Moana Center with ample parking.”
Executive chef Brian Gremillion, who previously served as chef de cuisine at the heralded Delfina Restaurant in San Francisco and as chef at Ivan Ramen in New York City, has put an intriguing spin on the diverse menu, including the “BOX Lunch” offerings available daily from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Try the brand-new BOX Loco Moco ($13), which is composed of a 4-ounce beef patty, oxtail gravy, steamed rice and egg — The Brilliant Ox’s take on a local favorite.
A kicked-up version of a popular trend is Ahi & Avocado Toast ($18), a beautiful presentation of fresh ahi, rich avocado, salsa verde, radish and sea salt.
Guests rave about Roasted Bone Marrow ($20), a hearty pupu-style array of rich, buttery bone marrow alongside sweet red onions, sea salt and grilled crostini bread. Ox Fries ($11) is another popular pupu pick, as the fries are smothered in aged cheddar cheese fondue and oxtail gravy.
Sweet Potato Croquettes ($12) offer a great start to one’s meal and are served with lap cheong jam, fried rosemary and sambal mayo.
Ox Burger ($15) is many customers’ goto entree. The beefy double patty is topped with melted American cheese, lettuce, tomato and ox sauce. Guests can make it “Brilliant” for an additional $5, adding cheddar fondue and oxtail gravy to the mix.
As part of the new “All-Day, Everyday Happy Hour” spread, diners can dig into Red Hot Cauliflower ($7). These battered and fried cauliflower bites are prepared in a tangy Buffalo-style sauce and accompanied by shiso ranch and Parmesan dipping sauce.
Additional happy hour specials are available everyday and brunch is served on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Check out the late night menu available Friday and Saturday from 10:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. A DJ mixes music from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays to keep the good times going throughout the night.
Let The Good Times Flow
The Brilliant Ox’s open, inviting atmosphere is bolstered by two full bars offering everything from beer and wine to signature, hand-crafted cocktails including Telenovela ($13), a blend of mezcal tequila, lilikoi juice, agave, ginger and brown sugar. The attractive cocktail dubbed Ume-migos ($14) couples Casamigos tequila, barrel-aged plum liqueur, ume, strawberry and tangy yukari.
The restaurant also is available for events and parties, as The Brilliant Ox brings friends and families together for an array of special occasions. Two private rooms can hold six to 18 people each, or be combined for a party of about 36 — the restaurant can fit approximately 200 guests.