Rare Necessities

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Ahi Tuna “Rolls” with crispy onion, jalapeño and roasted garlic ponzu

As Hawai‘i slowly opens up to visitors once more, StripSteak Waikiki will be ready for the holiday rush when it arrives. In fact, the International Market Place restaurant has been enjoying a steady stream of diners since it re-opened its doors for dinner service this past summer. From the onset, passers-by can readily see a good number of diners out on the expansive outdoor seating area and hear live music coming from the lanai. Yes, Strip- Steak 2.0 has arrived.

So, what’s changed for the modern steakhouse? The menu has been slightly revamped with a few new items and the beverage service refreshed. And for those of you who were Happy Hour regulars, that too, has returned with updated offerings.

From the extensive list of starters and small plates, the “Popcorn” Shrimp Tempura, Ahi Tuna “Rolls” and robata skewers were standouts. With grilled offerings like Foie Gras and Pineapple, and Tandoori Octopus, one could tell the kitchen wasn’t afraid to be creative with mixing flavors from various cuisines, and it paid off.

But it’s still a steakhouse after all, and StripSteak’s presentation of its Hot Stone A5 Wagyu took center stage at the table (and perhaps the attention of the other diners as well). Buttery slices of marbled Wagyu were cooked tableside and complemented with a simple medley of sauces. Each melt-in- your-mouth slice was good enough to eat sans additional seasonings.

Other new carnivorous entrées on the menu include Prime Rib Cap and Triple Seared Washugyu StripSteak.
A specialty of the house, American Wagyu is cooked using a three-stage searing technique involving Hawaiian sea salt, sake and soy sauce. As for the aforementioned Prime Rib Cap — the outer-rim of a prime rib roast — this is arguably the best part of a ribeye. Rich, tender and full of flavor, this uncommon cut of meat will likely appear on more menus around town. But for now, StripSteak has the monopoly on this tasty cut of meat and serves it perfectly well (and by well, we mean rare).

Dessert offerings also have new additions to note. The Basque-style Cheesecake served with warm strawberries and yuzu curd is a different take on the NY version — this one is baked in high heat and has a caramelized top. It may look “burnt” but it tastes heavenly. Chocolate fans will ooh and ahh at the 24K Chocolate Molten Cake Sundae — a multi-textured dessert comprising chocolate cake, ganache, cookie crisps and Luxardo cherries. In a word: yum.

Along with the new updates, the establishment also kicked off its re-opening by placing two of their own longtime team members to fill the restaurant’s top spots: Chris Burman as its new general manager, along with Denecio Urias as its new executive chef. Together, the two have worked to give StripSteak Waikiki the successful comeback that it’s had. A return visit is definitely a must.

StripSteak Waikiki, 2330 Kalakaua Ave.,
Third Level, 808-896-2545
stripsteakwaikiki.com

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