A different approach to Japanese fare

Columns Foodie Fare

July 5, 2015

Story By: Christina O Connor | Photos by: Anthony Consillio

Named after a castle in Hiroshima, Japan, Rijo Restaurant seeks to bring contemporary, elevated Japanese cuisine to the Islands.

“Our chef takes traditional Japanese dishes and infuses local ingredients, along with international cooking styles, to produce a unique and flavorful variety of dishes,” says manager Kelvin Nakahata.

“(Chef Yao) has many years of cooking experience here in Hawaii, the Mainland and in Japan,” he adds. “Many of the dishes he creates are uniquely one-of-a-kind, found nowhere else.”

The results are dishes such as Two Way Saikyou Yaki Butterfish ($33), which displays a 6-ounce misoyaki butterfish on a bed of sizzling ginger rice, Asian herbs, simmered shimeji mushrooms and shredded nori, all accompanied by a Shiitake dashi consomme.

If you’re craving a little more turf than surf, there’s Misoyaki Filet Mignon ($39), a slow-cooked 8-ounce, Certified Angus steak flavored with a soy-mirin red wine reduction.

For the eatery’s rendition of fish stew, there’s Rijo Bouillabaisse ($43), which is stocked with a plethora of seafood, ranging from fish, clams and squid to scallops and mussels, along with half of a Maine lobster.

Soon, diners can expect even more dishes to choose from. Nakahata says they’re in the process of concocting some new items.

“We are expanding our current menus, introducing new items to keep things new and fresh,” he says. “We look forward to creating new dishes to attract new customers looking for a different approach to Japanese cuisine.”

Rijo also recently extended its happy hour; it now runs from 4 to 8 p.m. daily (except Mondays).

Rijo Restaurant

Harbor Court, third floor
66 Queen St., Downtown
Lunch: Sunday-Friday, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Dinner: Tuesday-Saturday, 5-10 p.m.

Honolulu, HI 96813

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