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Restaurant Insider with Anne Lee: STIX Asia

Restaurant Insider

January 14, 2024

Story By: Anne Lee |

BARIO Spicy Deluxe Ramen ($28.98 regular; $30.98 large)

STIX Asia, Hawaii’s award-winning premier Asian food hall, will be turning a year old on Feb. 3. To kick start a monthlong promotion, on Feb. 6, which is also National Chopsticks Day, there will be chances to win prizes like a trip for two to Japan or $50 gift cards, as well as complimentary mango gelato (while supplies last) from Ao Gelato for the first 300 people that purchase $20 or more (redeem at the concierge desk to receive a ticket).

This Asian-themed food hall won the Ilima Award for Best Food Hall in 2023, and it features affordable Asian food concepts (from Japan, Taiwan, China, Vietnam, Korea and Singapore) while providing history of each culture.

I met with CEO Frank Clark to get an update with what’s new from these world-class eateries.

Ribs & Broth’s Double Beef Back Ribs Pho ($26.95)

AL: I can’t believe its been a year. Can you give me an update on what’s new?

FC: We have added three new restaurants. Ramen BARIO isn’t necessarily new to Waikiki. Many may remember them at the previous food hall, and now they have come back home. This location offers BARIO Deluxe Ramen options that are not available at Ala Moana. The bestseller is BARIO Spicy Deluxe Ramen ($28.98 regular; $30.98 large). You can order the level of hotness: mild, hot, fire, Kilauea ($2 extra) or ghost ($4 extra; only 21 and older; signed waiver required). There’s also a 15% kamaaina discount. The signature is the BARIO Egg Ramen ($20.98 regular; $22.98 large), which features carefully selected pork bone that is boiled over 20 hours to produce a rich and creamy broth.

Good Chicken’s Garlic Chili Chicken (call for cost)

We have added Vietnamese cuisine to our family, a locally owned restaurant, Ribs & Broth, known for its signature dish, Double Beef Back Ribs Pho ($26.95). It’s an impressive bowl of pho with two large beef ribs that are fork tender and fall off the bone. They also feature a 15% discount. They have a dry mix homemade ramen. We tried the Roast Pork Egg Noodle ($18.95) with romaine lettuce, chives, green onion and fried garlic. Since they are located in noodle row, they wanted to offer diners something without broth.

Opening at the end of this month will be Good Chicken. They’re the previous owners of Good Kitchen at Shirokiya. Look for their Waikiki-only menu items, such as Lava Chicken Wings, Boneless Chicken with Squid Ink and chile spices or you can choose spicy melted cheese, which resembles a snow mountain.

AL: Can you give me an overview of the other eateries?

Ribs & Broth’s Roast Pork Egg Noodle ($18.95)

FC: Each restaurant and eatery will be offering their own unique promotion.

• Sushi Matsuri (808-892-1300) is known for its selection of rice and natural soy sauce from Tokushima and seaweed from Setouchi, Japan.

• Udon Yama (808-892-4441) serves freshly made udon, and they give you the broth last. It’s known for its Pork Katsu (call for price) that’s made to order and the Lemon Udon (call for price) that is refreshing.

• HK Café (808-888-2868) brings the taste of Hong Kong to Hawaii. A dim sum concept is expected to open in the next few months.

• Shingen (808-926-0255) is known for its homemade soba and has a great lunch deal, Mini Tempura Bowl Set (call for cost). They also created an Ube Udon (call for cost) for the local palate.

• Baikohken’s (808-784-0005) original location opened in 1969 in Japan, and was listed in the Sapporo Michelin guide. The restaurant’s Shoyu Ramen ($19.98) put them on the map.

• Honolulu Noodle & Co. (808-888-2868) is the first Taiwanese restaurant in Waikiki and has chefs from Taiwan in the kitchen. Its broth takes 48 hours to make.

• Nanamusubi (808-888-0980) features handmade musubi made with organic rice from Japan. The restaurant adjusts the water and rice ratio based on the humidity to create the perfect musubi every time.

• Nana’s Green Tea (808-888-0242) is known for its matcha and boasts more than 80 locations in Japan. It is known as the Starbucks of green tea.

• Shanghai Bar (808-888-2885) brings a bit of Shanghai to Hawaii. Try the Shanghai Old Fashion or the signature Rainbow Shot (call for costs).

• At Ao Gelato (808-888-0242), try homemade gelato made from Nana’s Green Tea matcha, local fruits and homemade waffle cones. Items include a double scoop of Matcha and Hibiscus Lime or a double scoop of Hawaiian Lilikoi and Hawaiian Honey Lemon (call for cost; add a waffle cone for $1).

Ramen BARIO’s Otake-san

Ilima Awards
Hawaii's Best