Just back from 4 nights in Kauai. Maybe I was at the wrong places but each night we spent upwards of $100 on dinner!
First night was Brennekes. We went there because we took a wrong turn going to the Hyatt and knew where it was. Food was no better than what you can get most places on the mainland but higher prices (ok, do we had a few mai-tais).
Second night we ate at the Italian restaurant at the Hyatt. Can't even remember the name (Dondini's or Dondoro's or somthing like that). Avoid it at all costs (and I mean that in more ways than one). We live in NJ where there is a great Italian restaurant on every block! It was sad to sit there eating and wishing that I was having the linguini in clam sauce at the Cafe Capri across the street from where we live. Maybe we should have tried Tidepools instead, but somehow I don't think it would have been any better (but the hotel was fabulous!).
Then we discoverd Roy's, just 5 minutes down the road. I had the sake tasting menu and it was fabulous. Plus you got a little bit of everything. My husband didn't want much to each and I figured if I was going to pay close to $100 anyway, I might as well get the tasting menu at $75 (or somewhere close to it). I didn't regret the choice.
I got hooked on the butterfish, and I'm not a big fish eater. It is actually cod that has been marinated in sake and soy sauce. They slice it so it fans out and serve it with shredded pork. It was the highlight of the meal, along with the 4 different glasses of cold sake brewed especially for Roy's.
We were so impressed we went back on our last night in Kauai. I of course had the butterfish appetizer and the pork pot roast entree. Roy's didn't disappoint.
We were in Hawaii for 3 weeks (including a cruise on the Norwegian Star), and the 2 dinners at Roy's were the dining hightlight of the trip. True, it's in a strip mall, but that doesn't take away from the food. Oh, to taste that butterfish again. GO!
Later we came across the Roy's in Hawaii Kai. Is it the same menu as in Kauai? We didn't have time to find out, but if we had known earlier where it was, we certainly would have gone.