More is Better at Fairwood

Features Order of the Day

July 14, 2013

Story By: Michelle Lee | Photos by: Leah Friel

During this unpredictable economy, some restaurants are being forced to sacrifice on portion size and quality of ingredients to stay afloat. Naturally then, it is no surprise why the abundant and flavor-packed cuisine at Fairwood Drive Inn and Diner has had hungry patrons returning for more than 18 years.

Famous for its Chinese-style, comfort foods, the award-winning restaurant offers something for everybody.

“There is such a huge variety of dishes that can be cooked any which way,” says Tiffany Ko, owner of Fairwood Drive Inn and Diner. “Our menu is still very much traditional Chinese cuisine with an added local flair.”

After immigrating from Zhongshan, China, more than 23 years ago, Ko began to incorporate her cooking techniques and recipes she had learned since childhood into her cuisine.

“Growing up, cooking was a part of daily life,” she explains.

Diners at Fairwood can choose from a variety of plate lunches, sandwiches, noodles and a la carte items. Combination plates also offer a great value such as the much beloved Local Boy ($9.25), which comes with honey garlic chicken, teriyaki steak and char siu, as well as rice and macaroni salad.

Daily specials including Braised Steak with Potatoes and Honey Garlic Chicken Combo ($11.95) and General Chicken ($8.95) utilize slow-cooking techniques and meticulously crafted sauces to produce flavors that are spicy, sweet and tangy.

“Most of our dishes require sauces made from more than six or seven spices that have been cooking for more than five hours to give it the perfect consistency,” says Ko.

Each day, the cooks spend hours preparing countless pounds of fresh meat from char siu to ginger chicken. The restaurant’s signature Roasted Duck ($8.95) sits overnight coated in a thick glaze of Chinese spices, chopped garlic, and onions before it is cooked.

“We marinate the duck and cook it in a way so the meat stays tender on the inside but crispy on the outside,” Ko states. “It’s the only way to truly bring out all the flavors.”

Quality and consistency are paramount to Ko and her staff.

“All of our dishes are cooked to order so you know it’s fresh, and I like to be generous with portion sizes,” she says. “After almost two decades of service, I aim to deliver the highest quality cuisine at the best possible value for the customer.”

Additionally, Fairwood will be expanding its menu to include different types of cuisine, as well as a breakfast menu in the months ahead.

Fairwood Drive-Inn

Kaimuki Shopping Center
3221 Waialae Avenue, Honolulu
Open daily, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Honolulu, HI 96816

Hawaii's Best
Hawaii's Best