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Food & Drink

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Total Number of Articles - 121
  • The Red Water Cafe

    Chef David Abraham has transformed the former Fujimamas into a place for Hawaiian café food with a twist. They specialize in "multicultural cuisine" like the "Thai Caesar salad" with crispy calamari croutons that is big enough to share. There's a full sushi bar as well. Don't miss the "Fuji" roll with shrimp, ahi, crab, avocado, and cucumber that is tempura-battered and deep-fried. Wash it all down with the signature saketini. Lunch is a great bet here, too, with a build-your-own saimin option (broth with noodles), a huge Cobb salad, and a juicy 8-ounce burger with lots of fixings. This place is popular among locals and is a great spot for the whole family—the kids' menu was developed by Abraham's eight-year-old daughter. www.redwater-cafe.com. Credit cards accepted. Closed Sun.

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  • Restaurant Hayama

    Tucked into Kopiko Plaza, just below Long's, this local favorite for quality Japanese fare goes beyond sushi. Hayama serves traditional Japanese specialties like tempura, unagi, broiled fish, teriyaki, and udon noodles, all made from fresh local ingredients. Sushi is available as well, but only traditional nigiri, slices of raw fish layered with wasabi and rice, and sashimi. Lunch specials are a great deal, and dinner specials provide a three-course meal for two for $40. Despite its strip mall location, Hayama manages to pull off a Zen vibe that matches the quiet and attentive, albeit "island-time," service. Credit cards accepted. Closed Sun.

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  • Quinn's Almost by the Sea

    With the bar in the front and the dining patio in the back, Quinn's may seem like a bit of a dive at first glance, but this venerable restaurant serves up the best darn cheeseburger and fries in town. Appropriate for families, the restaurant stays busy for lunch and dinner, while the bar attracts a cast of colorful regulars. The menu has many tasty options, like fish-and-chips, meat loaf, or beef tenderloin tips. Quinn's stays open until 11 pm, later than almost any other restaurant in Kailua-Kona. If time gets away from you on a drive to the north beaches, Quinn's awaits your return with a cheap beer and a basket of fried calamari. Drinks are strong; there are no watered-down cocktails served here. Park across the street at the Courtyard King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel and get free one-hour parking with validation. Breakfast is sometimes served during football season. quinnsalmostbythesea.com. Credit cards accepted.

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  • Pine Tree Café

    Next to Matsuyama's market along Highway 11 on the way to the airport, the Pine Tree Café offers local classics such as huli huli (Hawaiian-style rotisserie) chicken and loco moco, alongside new inventions like crab curry bisque. The fresh-fish plate is decent, and all meals are served with fries or rice and macaroni salad. The prices are a bit higher than you might expect, but the portions are huge. It's a good place to stop for a last-minute bite before catching your flight back to the mainland. Credit cards accepted.

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  • Pho Saigon

    Tucked away in the old Department of Motor Vehicles building near Big Island Grill, this new addition to Kona's dining scene also happens to be the Big Island's only authentic Vietnamese restaurant. All ingredients are the freshest of fresh, and the pho noodle soup (both chicken and beef) will satisfy aficionados. Closed Sun.

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