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A perfect spot for your next party

A La Carte

August 11, 2019

Story By: Brandon Bosworth |

Xiaolongbao ($7.95). File photo

Specializing in elevated Chinese cuisine, The Mandalay is centrally located in the heart of downtown Honolulu between Alii Place and Central Pacific Plaza. A limestone and tile mural of a sweeping ocean wave welcomes guests and the elegant interior features subdued lighting, etched glass doors and porcelain vases.

The menu features a wide array of delicious dishes, some of which require intensive preparation and must be ordered at least a day in advance. For example, the Roast Spare Ribs ($38). Larry Chan, owner of The Mandalay, says this generous slab of meat is “very popular” and “good for parties.”

“It’s not American-style spare ribs,” he says. “It’s Chinese-style, and very delicious.”

Another delicacy requiring a day’s notice is the Free Range Golden Crispy Chicken ($45). A whole chicken is prepared to be crisp on the outside yet succulent and tender on the inside.

Both of these items are perfect for large gatherings, as is The Mandalay itself, which offers banquet facilities and private rooms. “We’ve had events with up to 400 people,” says Chan, “but we cater to groups of any size, we have separate, smaller private rooms to choose from.”

The Mandalay can accommodate audio-visual systems, and will even help with party planning. And while the restaurant closes at 8 p.m., for private events, the team will keep facilities open until 10:30 p.m.

DIM SUM DONE RIGHT

One thing The Mandalay excels at is dim sum. Served from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., it offers more than 30 different items, starting at $2.95.

“All of our dim sum is made by hand and never frozen,” owner Larry Chan says. “Our dim sum is made by hand daily and steamed to order to keep everything fresh as possible. The cooks are in the kitchen by 7 a.m. every day to start preparing the dishes.”

An especially popular dim sum item is the Xiaolongbao ($7.95). Also known as Shanghai dumplings, xiaolongbao consists of plump dumplings — the bao — filled with minced pork, shrimp and soup, which are made fresh daily and cooked in a steamer basket known as a xiaolong.

Other popular dim sum offerings at The Mandalay include shrimp dumplings, baked barbecue pork buns and pork hash.

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