Photo courtesy of Miro


A Chef’s Guide to Eating Your Way Through Honolulu


Chris Kajioka is a Honolulu native who has become one of the island’s top chefs — and one of modern Hawaiian cuisine’s leading voices.  Most recently, he opened Miro Kaimuku in the former Cafe Miro, with the help of San Francisco-based chef Mourad Lahlou (Aziza, Mourad) and Kismet vet Trevor Webb.

Kajioka is also a champion for his community, and like many chefs, he knows where the good stuff is. As such, he was willing to share some of his current favorite restaurants and food spots in and around Honolulu. Here’s his list:

1. Kyung’s Seafood

“Amazing sashimi and poke. Open late night and always delivers for local and Korean food. Mama is always down to have fun.” — C.K.

1269 S King St., Honolulu. (808) 589-1144

2. Izakaya Uosan

“Amazing izakaya and sushi. Great vibe, with an always-changing menu. I always get the local egg yolk rice with uni and truffle.” — C.K.

1221 Kapiolani Blvd., Honolulu. (808) 200-5077

3. Ili Ili Cash and Carry

“This is a new pizza and sub shop. Just tasty food made with great ingredients.” — C.K.


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2065 S Beretania #100, Honolulu. (808) 367-0606. Online ordering.

4. Miro Kaimuki

“Miro is collaboration between my brother Mourad Lahlou and myself. My chef de cuisine Trevor Webb is extremely talented and drives the menu direction and its execution. He is a rising star, in my opinion. The whole menu is vegetable-focused.” — C.K.
3446 Waialae Ave., Honolulu. (808) 379-0124. www.mirokaimuki.com

5. Papa Kurt’s

“In my opinion, they have a great, local-style burger. Don’t miss the saimin, made with great local ingredients. This is food that feeds the soul.” — C.K. 


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925 Isenberg St., Honolulu. www.papakurts.com

6. Nana Ai Katsu

“A great new place that serves only to-go. Amazing quality breaded pork and even spam. Always hits the spot. The owners are also very nice people.” —  C.K.
333 Ward Ave. #4, Honolulu. (808) 772-0146,  www.nanaaikatsu.com