Delicious Creations

Cover Story

April 14, 2024

Story By: Dining Out Team | Photos by: Anthony Consillio

Marinated Fried Chicken ($16.59)

Sekiya’s Restaurant & Delicatessen is a popular spot for local comfort food in a casual ambiance. Created about 90 years ago, the restaurant was initially School Street Delicatessen, a small stand run by founders Taisuke and Katusko Sekiya on the street it was named after. It moved to Kapahulu before settling into its current location on Kaimuki Avenue near Market City Shopping Center.

Guests enjoy the old-school diner atmosphere while enjoying the company of family and friends. In cool air conditioned comfort, the biz can satisfy cravings for local-style Japanese dishes and classic fountain service with sundaes and milkshakes.

Leonard “Trey” Paresa III’s wife is the great granddaughter of the restaurant’s founders. Paresa is now both Sekiya’s chef as well as the father of the fifth generation.

He shares more about the delicious dishes that Sekiya’s offers.

DO: What types of food can patrons find at this establishment?

TP: Our menu is quite large and if you’re looking for local-style Japanese comfort food, we have it. In the front of our restaurant is our okazuya with items like shrimp, potato, hash and vegetable tempura; yakisoba and chow fun; shoyu chicken and fried chicken; gobo, potato macaroni salad and namasu.

We also serve breakfast until 11 a.m. every day, which includes things like pancakes, waffles, meats and eggs, and our Japanese breakfast (which is an ochazuke that comes with fish and egg) and Fisherman’s breakfast. We serve our full menu all day long from open to close and anything from saimin to hamburgers to yosenabe or sukiyaki. We have a variety of tempura, teriyaki, nitsuke and katsu. The best thing is we make most items from scratch, including our dashi and all of our sauces, and most of our recipes are still the same ones that were around when Sekiya’s first opened.

DO: What are some of your popular items/dishes?

TP: One of our most popular items is the Marinated Fried Chicken ($16.59) featuring boneless filets of chicken thigh dredged in potato starch and fried until golden and crispy. The flavors in the marinade includes shoyu, sugar, mirin, ginger and garlic, and it is served in a full meal with a daikon oroshi sauce.

Another is the Oyako Donburi ($14.58), which is our house specialty. Oyako (literally meaning “parent and child”) has chicken, diced onions, button mushroom, and longrice simmered in sugar, shoyu and dashi, covered in poached scrambled egg and served over rice.

There is also the Large Saimin and Hamburger Combination ($16.80). This dish is our classic saimin and hamburger deluxe. We make our dashi from scratch as well as our hamburgers. The saimin comes with char siu and green onion; the burger contains lettuce, tomato, onion and pickle.

And finally, the Oxtail Soup ($24.75), which is one of our original recipes. Classic oxtail soup, topped with mustard cabbage and served with Chinese parsley, fresh grated ginger, rice and tsukemono. We have this while supplies last as sometimes we do sell out or are not able to source the oxtail to cut.

DO: What is your favorite dish?

TP : My personal favorite is the Nabeyaki Udon ($17.65). A mini hot pot, with chicken, shiitake, fishcake, udon, topped with makina, watercress, a poached egg and a piece of our okazuya shrimp tempura. Very comforting flavors and textures throughout the dish.

DO: Do you have any current specials?

TP: We don’t have any current specials off the menu. We serve kobumaki in our okazuya each Friday, and we will be working on a Mother’s Day and Father’s Day special. Once in a while, I will bring in sashimi or rib-eye steaks or make nishime.

DO: What makes Sekiya’s a unique place to dine?

TP: We are fortunate to have so many regular local customers, and we’ve seen many gener ations come and enjoy with us. Again, we are (a) very relaxed family-owned and -operated (restaurant) and have been a part of the community for many years. We hope to see more people, especially those that may have never gotten a chance to try our food, and be here for their children and grandchildren.

We are also looking for help in all positions. Currently, we’re closed Mondays and we do half-days on Tuesdays and Wednesday, but we want to open back up to our full hours as soon as possible.

Honolulu, HI 96816

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