Healthy eating for the ‘grill’ of it

Columns What's Cooking?

October 5, 2014

Story By: Rachel Breit | Photos by: Rachel Breit

After hitting the gym, the surf or the park, chances are you’ve worked up quite an appetite for something healthy, delicious and available in a flash. But it can be hard to find this trio of qualities, especially in fast food. Thankfully, the husband-and-wife team behind GRYLT, Allen and Mayu Farinas, have the solution. (And those living on the the Windward side will have less of a drive when the restaurant opens its fourth location this December in Kailua Shopping Center.)

The couple delivers on the promise of high-quality and locally sourced food made with minimal ingredients. Fresh proteins are grilled right in front of you and cut to order. “We want to show you the process because we have nothing to hide,” Allen Farinas says. Diners choose from a host of protein, veggie and starch options to build custom plates. Braised beef, grilled salmon, tofu, mashed cauliflower and ‘Nalo greens are just a sampling.

Angus Steak Plate with Faro Mix Salad ($11.95)

Angus Steak Plate with Faro Mix Salad ($11.95)

At GRYLT, even baby ro-maine gets a turn on the grill, which infuses it with a novel smoky char. The Kula-grown wedges are kissed by fire then topped with freshly ground peppercorn, Hawaiian sea salt, a drizzle of house-made honey mustard dressing, slices of tomatoes, caramelized onions and a sprinkle of Parmesan cheese for an uncommon take on salad. “Be sure to get a bite with everything on it,” says Farinas. “Just pick it up and eat it.” The layers of flavors will make you wonder why you hadn’t tried grilled greens sooner.

Another surprise on the menu is Farro Mix (additional $1 as a side), an early strain of wheat that’s been enjoyed the world over for centuries. Yes, the Pharaohs ate farro as did the Roman legions. With its nutty flavor and gratifying chew, it’s obvious how the kernels have withstood the test of time. In GRYLT’s Farro Mix, finely diced local cucumbers, sundried tomatoes, fresh herbs and lemon juice are stirred in with the grain to yield a robust yet delicately flavored side dish reminiscent of tabouli salad.

If a good-ole steak is what you crave, GRYLT’s tritip sirloin is it. It’s tender with a good crust and “still juicy even if you want it well done,” Farinas says. The steak is so good on its own, it’s not even marinaded, but a dunk into one of GRYLT’s house-made sauces, such as citrus herb oil and roasted garlic chili, can’t hurt.

These three items are available as part of the Angus Steak Plate ($10.95). “All our food is made with love,” says Farinas. What’s not to like about that?


Kahala Mall
4211 Waialae Ave.
(with additional locations at Ala Moana Center and Manoa Marketplace)
Daily, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.

Honolulu, HI 96816

Hawaii's Best
Hawaii's Best