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Oodles of Noodles

Step Up to the Plate

August 25, 2019

Story By: Elima Pangorang |

A CLOSER LOOK AT THIS WEEK’S HOUSE SPECIAL: COLD KALE UDON WITH FRIED KALE CHIPS ($12)

For a different take on udon noodles check out Zigu, which makes the favored noodles from scratch daily with its very own udon maker in house.

The Waikiki eatery churns out fresh dishes of the noodles with local ingredients like Cold Kale Udon with Fried Kale Chips, Local Basil Pesto Udon Noodle with watercress, Cold Udon Noodle with Aloha Natto & Okra, and Cold Udon Noodle with Local Cilantro & Chicken.

Zigu’s charming, warm wood interior.

That’s just the beginning of this cozy Japanese izakaya-style restaurant that also serves up an array of sashimi, sushi and entrees such as Grilled Sweetened Miso Salmon, Hawaiian Tuna Cutlet, Braised Pork Belly and more.

General manager Yoshi Kuno shares that majority of the menu incorporates locally sourced ingredients. This also includes the seafood, such as Hawaiian-caught tuna, Kona kampachi and abalone, and Kauai shrimp, just to name a few. Zigu’s produce is fresh from various vendors around the islands, and chef Masaki Nakayama even goes to the downtown market to hand-pick vegetables for the day. With a meal at Zigu, diners are sure to expect nothing short of a delectable, authentic Japanese dining experience. Additionally, the eatery is well known for its sake beverages.

Zigu is open seven days a week for lunch and then again for dinner. Parking is available at the Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach Hotel and customers of Zigu may receive validated parking with a purchase of $30 or more.

SEEING GREEN

Nakayama purees the kale every morning, adding salt to the resulting juice, then mixes in flour until doughy, flattens it “like paper,” until finally putting it through the noodle-cutting machine.

KEEP IT SAUCY

Great as an appetizer, these cold kale noodles are accompanied by the diner’s choice of homemade dipping sauce or sesame dipping sauce, which enhance the flavors and aromas just right.

HAIL KALE

The dried and fried kale chips, made in house, add a hint of crisp to the meal that perfectly complement the softness of the noodles and smoothness of the sauce.

OH, SO FRESH

Zigu chef Masaki Nakayama picks up fresh kale from the downtown market every day so diners can enjoy the pureness and authenticity of the light dish.

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