The mother of all meals

Ali Carte Columns

April 27, 2015

Story By: Ali Resich | Photos by: Nathalie Walker

If you’re still looking for a special spot to take Mom to this Mother’s Day, why not try something a little different than the standard buffets and go for an intimate and handcrafted dining experience?

Sakura Terrace on King Street provides just that, and has been doing so since it opened in Novem-ber 2011. The moment customers enter through its doors, they’re immediately transported to elegant and relaxing surroundings, complete with indoor-outdoor dining — including patio seating — and a lush wall of palm trees that allows them to forget they’re in the middle of town. In this setting, patrons savor upscale Japanese fare sprinkled with fusion touches.

Mother's Day Special ($60 for two people) Appetizer Set, Tofu Salad and Takikomi Gohan.

Mother’s Day Special ($60 for two people) Appetizer Set, Tofu Salad and Takikomi Gohan.

Earlier this year, Sakura Terrace embarked on a mission to provide exclusive yet affordable ways for its loyal patrons to enjoy holiday meals. After its New Year’s and Valentine’s Day celebratory menus were successes, the eatery decided to extend the joyous feasting with a Mother’s Day Special ($60 for two people).

The set menu is delicately crafted by chief chef Takayuki Sekine, with great attention to detail given to the melding of flavors as well as exquisitely colorful presentations. “I really enjoy creating new culinary experiences for our guests and take a lot of time to perfect our new items,” says the chef.

The meal kicks off with an Appetizer Set exemplary of this, containing an array of small bites that serves as a playground for the senses. Scrumptious nibbles of ahi and avocado poke, boiled Kona abalone and ginger shrimp are paired with unexpected pleasures such as pumpkin salad, curry chicken wings and the chef’s signature macadamia nut tofu.

Sakura's Wafu Steak selection and desserts from the Mother's Day Special.

Sakura’s Wafu Steak selection and desserts from the Mother’s Day Special.

True to Sekine’s style, each divine piece of the Appetizer Set is made individually to ensure the quality remains high. A fusion of cuisines comes through here as well, with sliced ham and Camem-bert cheese with crackers, tomato-sauce covered squid and Brussels sprout, rolled omelet, sweet miso bamboo shoots, shio dare edamame and Chinese seaweed salad rounding out the selection of pupus.

The Mother’s Day spread continues with a choice of one salad and one grilled item. Diners may pick from bright Tofu Salad, Salmon Skin Salad or Bijin Salad. As for the entrees, their choices include Miso But-terfish, Sukiyaki or Wafu Steak. According to Cariaga, the steak has been particularly popular, as it presents incredibly soft and juicy slices of Black Angus beef that melt in your mouth — especially when dipped into savory shio dare, citrusy ponzu and tangy onion sauces served on the side.

Takikomi Gohan rice, featuring spring vegetables, dried shrimp, egg and ikura, comes with all Mother’s Day sets, as does a dessert platter showcasing velvety Okinawan sweet potato, sweet mango pudding and assorted fresh fruits.

While unwinding in this culinary oasis, enjoy the holiday menu during lunch and dinner May 8-10. All keiki under the age of 6 re ceive a complimentary kids meal consisting of chicken karaage, cucumber maki sushi and mac salad. Sakura Terrace requests that diners make reservations for the Mother’s Day Special at least one day in advance and specify how many children, if any, will be attending. The regular menu also will be available.

Sakura Terrace

1240 S. King St., Honolulu


11 a.m.-2:30 p.m.,
5-9:30 p.m.

Parking lot located behind
the eatery

Honolulu, HI 96814

Hawaii's Best
Hawaii's Best