Putting fresh catches in the spotlight

Columns Foodie Fare

May 7, 2015

Story By: Christina O Connor | Photos by: Nathalie Walker

At most restaurants, it seems like 2 p.m. is safely past the lunch rush — most people have come in, finished their meals and left.

That’s not the case at Ahi & Vegetable.

When Dining Out stopped in to its Kapalama Center location last week at 2 p.m., nearly every table was filled. Patrons were sa-voring the eatery’s fresh fish, sushi rolls, donburis and bentos.

If you’re thinking that the selection sounds like standard local fare, according to owner Sam Seo, what really sets Ahi & Vegetable apart is the quality of its seafood.

“I go to the fish auction every morning, and I choose the best fish,” he explains. “We want to give (customers) the best quality.”

And Seo knows about fresh fish: Before opening Ahi & Vegetable, he had been in the fish business for years — and he still does wholesaling.

For a sampling of some of that fresh fish, the Sashimi Special ($15) is a good place to start. It features ahi, salmon and hamachi.

“A lot of our customers say that one sashimi piece could really be two because they are so big,” Seo says.

Bento No. 9 ($11) comes with combination sushi (salmon and ahi nigiri), along with a California roll and poke. While that’s the standard offering, customers can opt to design their own bento and swap out these for other menu items.

If for some reason fresh fish is not your thing, Ahi & Vegetable has got you covered, too. One non-raw option is Bento No. 4 ($11), which features cooked ahi and salmon and shrimp tempura.

“We want to be sure that our food is for (everyone),” Seo explains.

With a range of large combo platters, Ahi & Veg etable also offers catering. For your next party, just make sure to call at least 24 hours in advance.

As discerning as Seo’s palate is when it comes to fish, when asked what Ahi & Vegetable menu items are his personal favorites, he replies, simply: “Any kind.”

Ahi & Vegetable

Kapalama Center
1210 Dillingham Blvd., Honolulu


Daily, 9 a.m.-9 p.m.

1210 Dillingham Boulevard, Honolulu, HI 96817

Hawaii's Best
Hawaii's Best