Flavors Take FlightCover Story
January 17, 2021
Story By: Ginger Keller | Photos by: LAWRENCE TABUDLO
In late November, Shingen Hawaii made the move from Waikiki to South King Street. Despite the change in storefronts, the eatery continues to serve affordable and esteemed Japanese fare to visitors and locals alike.
“Now that we have moved to a new location, we would like to make a fresh start and become a restaurant loved by everyone,” says president Shohichi Nakatani.
“The restaurant is still not well known among the locals, but we are doing what we can one by one, and we hope that you will come and visit us.”
Known for having the freshest buckwheat noodles (the flour used to create this dish comes directly from Hokkaido, Japan), Red Spicy Tsuke Soba ($15.80) is also a not-tobe-missed item, according to Nakatani.
“We always focus on creating a menu that will be familiar to the local people,” he says. “Red Spicy Soba is one of those products. It is very popular among the local people who like spicy food. Many of them order more rice after finishing the soba and enjoy it with the spicy soup.
“This is an addictive dish that will make you want to eat it even while you’re sweating.
“And, of course, since we have many Japanese customers, we also focus on preserving the Japanese taste,” Nakatani adds. “We are always looking for information on what is popular in Japan and how we can arrange it in our restaurant.”
Its Hiroo no Curry ($15.80), meanwhile, was named after a place in Tokyo. Covering a vast array of flavors, the dish includes oxtail meat that’s been stewed for five to six hours, cabbage, pickled radish, curry and rice.
Those who seek a bit of variety, though, should give the Mini Donburi ($15.80 lunch; $17.80 dinner) set a go. Including soba or udon and rice, customers can choose between shrimp tempura, curry, ahi poke and more. Local favorites, like the Spicy Tuna Roll ($10.50) and Karaage ($7.20), can also be found on the menu.
“My favorite is the Niku-Tsuke Soba (soba with stewed beef),” shares Nakatani. “The exquisite taste of sweetened beef and soba noodles is very Japanese and gives me a sense of nostalgia. The karaage, ginger tempura and grilled beef tongue skewers go well with alcohol, making them perfect pupus.”
Currently open daily from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. for lunch and 5-8:30 p.m. for dinner, Shingen offers dine-in, takeout and delivery services, which are free for those in the downtown to Hawaii Kai areas.
“We have only just begun, so there may be many things we have yet to accomplish, but we would love to have your feedback when we do,” Nakatani says. “We will make every effort to respond to your feedback, and although we are still new, we would like to ask for your kind support for us at Shingen. We are sincerely looking forward to seeing you soon.”