Get your weekly fill at Kenny’s

Columns Surf and Turf

April 27, 2014

Story By: Steve Murray | Photos by: Anthony Consillio

If it seems like a family reunion breaks out every time you walk into Kenny’s Restaurant, there is a good reason for that. Since the Kalihi eatery opened in 1966, three generations of owners and four generations of customers have made it a regular, and even a weekly, stop.

Whether it’s employees from the neighboring schools, local politicians or world championship boxers, Kenny’s is the mid-city spot for large portions and affordable comfort food.

The Barbecue Beef Tri-Tip ($15.99) is one popular example of flavor meets value. It’s also former boxer Jesus Salud’s weekly favorite.

Nine ounces of beef are marinated in a teriyaki sauce that is vacuum sealed and placed in a specialized tumble machine that’s used to tenderize and flavor the meat. From there, the steak is grilled until the sauce caramelizes. All entrees include a choice of starch: white or brown rice, mashed potato or fried rice for an extra 75 cents. Salud’s weekly visits also include the Garlic Ahi.

Garlic Ahi (market price) is marinated in a mixture of olive oil, red chili sauce, garlic and other goodies, and then prepared to order. The choices are steamed, fried or grilled — the bestselling option. As with every fish dish, the ahi comes with miso soup and tsukemono.

If the Tri-Tip is the most popular, the Korean Chicken ($12.99) is a close second. Marinated for 48 hours, the strips of chicken thigh are floured and deep fried until golden brown. According to manager Leihulu Irvine, the restaurant’s method of preparing the dish is unique because most of its competition only uses a marinade in the final stages of the cooking process.

If you’re hungry for something bigger in the protein department, the Prime Rib ($25.95 Kenny’s 12-ounce cut, $19.95 regular 9-ounce cut) is an impressive option. The premium cut of beef is seared, then oven roasted for several hours with homemade Au Jus sauce. The Au Jus is so popular that customers, especially during the holidays, come in just for the sauce. As with the other entrees, the prime rib comes with starch and veggies.

Kenny’s Restaurant

Kamehameha Shopping Center
1620 N. School St.
Sunday-Thursday, 6:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m.
Friday, 6:30 a.m.-11 p.m.
Saturday, 6 a.m.-11 p.m.

Honolulu, HI 96817

Hawaii's Best
Hawaii's Best