Posts Tagged ‘Kake Udon’

Spicy Ahi & BBQ – Ono Japanese Eats in Pearl City

May 1, 2012

In part III of my Hawaii Ramen Quest, I paid IchiBen (in the Times Square Shopping Center) a visit. While walking over from my car, I noticed a fairly large crowd gathered around the entrance of another eatery nearby. That place was called Spicy Ahi & BBQ and I took a mental note to return again to give it a try. Here's what I found on that return visit.

Based on the name alone, I was pretty excited. I love me some good BBQ, and, if you've been following my Poke Paradise series at all, you'll know that I am a fanatic when it comes to raw seafood concoctions.

In addition to BBQ, Noodle and Nabemono items, Spicy Ahi & BBQ has a special "Spicy Ahi Bowl or Spicy Ahi over Fresh Vegetable" section on their menu with 14 different combinations incorporating Spicy Ahi.

Spicy Ahi & BBQ Menu
Spicy Ahi & BBQ Menu

I went with a two choice combination meal with, what else? Spicy Ahi and BBQ (Kalbi). Oh yeah!

Spicy Ahi & Kalbi (BBQ Beef Short Rib) Combination Dinner - $14.95
Spicy Ahi & Kalbi (BBQ Beef Short Rib) Combination Dinner – $14.95

Each combination dinner comes with a salad, miso soup, rice & pickles (tsukemono).

Salad and miso soup from Combination Dinner
Salad and miso soup from Combination Dinner

The salad comes "dry", giving you the opportunity to use the dressing of your choice from the selection on each table.

Salad dressings
Salad dressings

Wifey also went with a little combo action, choosing Misoyaki Salmon…

Misoyaki Salmon
Misoyaki Salmon

… and Udon as her two options.

Kake Udon
Kake Udon

Although prices are on the higher side for a casual, sit down dining type of experience, both food quality and quantity are definitely present. Outside of Waikele Center’s Restaurant Kunio, I would go as far to say that Spicy Ahi & BBQ is probably one of the area's best tasting Japanese restaurants. Definitely worth the wait.

Spicy Ahi & BBQ
98-1254 Kaahumanu Street, Suite A-13
Pearl City, HI 96782
(808) 488-4851
Tue-Thu: 11am-2pm (lunch), 5pm-9pm (dinner)
Fri-Sat: 11am-2pm (lunch), 5pm-9:30pm (dinner)

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Marukame Udon – Homemade Japanese Style Noodles on the Cheap!

May 1, 2011

One thing good about having a dad from the muthaland is that he gets the scoops on ono kine Japanese grindz. Whether it be old time favorites that only the “insider” Nihonjins know about, or new joints about to open, papa Sugi is often in the know. Such is the case with Marukame Udon.

Early last month (April 1st to be exact), this pseudo-fast food Japanese noodle chain (known there as “Marugame Udon”) opened their first Hawaii location in Waikiki after opening 467 (and counting) locations across Japan. Thanks to an ad in a Japanese paper that pops subscribes to, we were able to get the jump and check it out just two days later.

Outside Marukame Udon in Waikiki
Outside Marukame Udon in Waikiki

From the looks of the shot above, it seems like you can just waltz right in whenevah you like, but don’t get it twisted, Marukame is usually mad busy, with crazy lines going out the door! Thankfully, it was not the case on this occasion (on a Sunday, a little before 5pm). Moms and wifey actually had some time to stop and smell the roses, er udon.

Wifey and moms deciding what to order
Wifey and moms deciding what to order

Here's what they were looking at (shokuhin/plastic food display)
Here’s what they were looking at (shokuhin/plastic food display)

Since it was indeed Waiks (located on Kuhio where the old Jack in the Box used to be), pops dropped us off earlier in the hopes of us snagging a place in line as he looked for parking. Since there was no line to speak of, I used this time to snap up photos of the joint before the mad rush came.


“How to Order” menu from Marukame Udon

Marukame Udon Menu
Marukame Udon Menu

Basically, it’s cafeteria style service here. You pretty much just stand in line…

Standing in line at Marukame Udon
Standing in line at Marukame Udon

… grab a tray, and tell the folks behind the counter what you want.

Marukame Udon employees ready to take my order
Marukame Udon employees ready to take my order

You can choose from a selection of 7 types of udon dishes: the Kamaage Udon (their #1 seller), Curry Udon, Niku Udon, Ontama Udon, Bukkake Udon, Kake Udon, and Zaru Udon.

You then scoot down the line, picking up your desired treats along the way.


Miscellaneous tempura/”age” treats along the way


Miscellaneous tempura/”age” treats along the way

Inari zushi and a variety of musubis at Marukame Udon
Inari zushi and a variety of musubis at Marukame Udon

When you make your way to the end, the cashier awaits and tallies up your total, which, for what you get, is VERY inexpensive (some udons start at just $3.75!)! And did I mention that the udon is made fresh, with “Nippn” brand Mentakumi flour, right before your very eyes!?

Udon noodles made fresh at Marukame Udon
Udon noodles made fresh at Marukame Udon

Once you pay, you can get additional condiments off to the side if you wish, and then find a seat in the relatively spacious dining area.

Marukame Udon dining area
Marukame Udon dining area

With pops still trying to find parking, I pass the time with some Internet surfing via with my Oceanic Mobile 4G hotspot.

Oceanic Mobile Works Here: Marukame Udon (Waikiki)
Oceanic Mobile Works Here: Marukame Udon (Waikiki)

Alas, pops arrives. There’s still no line so he’s able to order his Kamaage Udon and join us fairly quickly.


Kamaage Udon – “Piping hot udon noodles with dipping sauce” ($3.75 regular / $4.75 large)

Moms and wifey both got the Kake Udon. Here’s a shot of wifey’s order with a side musubi and ebi tempura.


Kake Udon – “Udon noodles in a hot broth” ($3.75 regular / $4.75 large)

And then we have my order: The large Curry Udon.


Curry Udon – “Udon noodles in curry sauce” ($5.25 regular / $6.25 large)

Although the parking sitch and potential long lines may be a bit of a deterrent, this is definitely one place you should try to check out. Fresh noodles, ono soup bases, and super duper affordable to boot! This one is Papa Sugi (and World Wide Ed) approved. 😉

Marukame Udon (Japanese site)
2310 Kuhio Avenue
Honolulu, HI. 96815 (map)
(808) 931-6000
Open Daily: 11am-10pm