Rockin’ the Lobster

Columns Ono, You Know

February 16, 2014

Story By: Alana Folen | Photos by: Nathalie Walker

The ongoing debate of savory versus sweet is always a battle within me. Recently, my sweet tooth has been running rapid, and it takes a load of sugar to satisfy it. Thankfully, Valentine’s Day just passed, so my stash of chocolate, cookies and candies has been replenished. However, conflict always occurs when a waft of freshly made french fries tickles my nose as if it was trying to one-up my sweet tooth. Did you say chips and salsa? Now, you’ve done it. Savory smells like victory.

But alas, here comes the mediator, also known as lobster, to settle things once and for all. Why choose one or the other when you can have both, right? As easy as that, all is made right as savory and sweet meet in the middle.

This week, at the following Ono, You Know establishments, I was able to reach a happy medium with an array of luscious lobster creations, all of which exhibit skilled craftsmanship and flair. So, there you have it — it’s a wrap — 100 percent savory lobster evoking such sweet harmony. It’s a beautiful thing!

Jade Dynasty Seafood Restaurant

Hong Kong-style cuisine is very attractive to my palate, therefore, Jade Dynasty Seafood Restaurant in Ala Moana Center’s Hookipa Terrace is a main staple when dining out.

Renowned for its variety of eclectic dim sum options and superior menu items, Jade Dynasty presents a classy and sophisticated atmosphere fitting for royalty.

As far as food presentation goes, well, that’s immaculate as well. On my most recent visit to the restaurant, general manager Gary Chan brought an elaborate culinary confection to the table. Served on a large platter was Lobster with Mochi Rice in Lotus Wrap (market price). Chan says mochi rice is a Chinese sticky rice that is soaked in water overnight and then stir-fried with butter, garlic and green onions. The starch itself is delicious on its own, but it’s the steamed, whole Boston lobster that steals the spotlight.

“It’s important that the rice and lobster are steamed together for about 15 minutes in the lotus wrap,” Chan explains. “That way the mochi rice absorbs a lot of flavor from the lobster.”

So gather the family together, all for the love of lobster.

Jade Dynasty Seafood Restaurant
Ala Moana Center, Hookipa Terrace

Shor American Seafood Grill

Venture to Waikiki to experience the best from both land and sea at Shor American Seafood Grill located at Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa. Here, you’ll not only appreciate the stellar cuisine, but also the immaculate details that contribute to the final product. With the philosophy “food thoughtfully sourced, carefully served,” the restaurant is committed to growing and utilizing the freshest ingredients that are healthy and nutritious, but still pack a punch with flavor.

Shor's Two Lobster Tails ($52) Courtesy photo

Shor’s Two Lobster Tails ($52) Courtesy photo

Livin’ for lobster? Then, you’ll revel in Shor’s Two Lobster Tails ($52) featuring 2 to 4 ounces of grilled cold-water lobster served with drawn butter. Once you crack open the shell, these meaty crustaceans are kicked up a notch, as melted buttery decadence coats the luscious meat that literally melts in your mouth, and a hint of warm lemon adds a welcomed touch.

“Our lobsters are sourced from Kona Cold Lobster on the Big Island,” says chef de cuisine Jake Andrews. Yup, proof that local lobster is sweet succulence.

And what I love the most — you know, being a legitimate lobster fanatic — is the option to add a grilled lobster tail to any entree for an additional $15. This way, any meal can be transformed into a lobster feast.

Now, that’s what I call fine dining! So, embrace the beauty of Waikiki Beach and savor the flavors that wash a-“Shor.”

Shor American Seafood Grill
Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa
2424 Kalakaua Ave.

JJ Bistro & French Pastry

Another lavish lobster dish crawls forth in JJ Bistro’s Lobster Pad Thai. Inspired by owner and chef JJ Luangkhot, this dish blends Southeast Asian flavors to create an innovative rendition of this popular noodle dish. Priced at $18.95 for one tail and $29.95 for two, Lobster Pad Thai produces a symphony of flavors, as the lobster is cooked in a homemade broth and placed atop a bed of rice noodles doused in a pad Thai sauce that bursts with citrusy flair.

JJ Bistro's Lobster Pad Thai ($29.95, two tails)

JJ Bistro’s Lobster Pad Thai ($29.95, two tails)

According to Luangkhot, it’s this sauce that gives his pad Thai the edge. Dubbed XO Citrus Sauce, it’s comprised of dried shrimp paste and citrus, which equates to the pad Thai’s tangy flavor.

“This dish is doing very well. It was always one of our most requested items,” says Luangkhot, who adds that patrons appreciate the fact that the sauce doesn’t mask the natural sweetness of the lobster.

What are you waiting for? Eurasian fare is pulling at your taste buds … oh, what a catch!

JJ Bistro & French Pastry
3447 Waialae Ave.

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