Will post a full review over next few days, but have to suggest everyone check out the new "Noreetuh" in East Village on 1st Avenue.
Somehow stumbled in during their soft opening and was treated to a sophisticated take on contemporary Hawaiian inspired cuisine. With some of the best hosts in the city (with veterans from Jungsik, Kaijitsu, and newcomers eager to ensure an amazing dining experience), this is the perfect example of a casual dining experience with top of the line service. While today's opening flew under the radar, the restaurant deserves to be, and will be, packed in the months to follow once the word gets out.
Wine list is well-sourced and extremely well priced - with most selections between $50 and $120, including a number of extremely well priced wines with some age. I enjoyed a nice '94 Savennieres (from cry "roche aux moines") for about $65 dollars at the bar.
Food was delicious, with highlights of crispy mushrooms with sweet miso, a spam tortellini, and a pineapple braised pork belly. I had a tuna poke that was inspired but for me, had too much of sesame oil in flavor profile for my preference but was still fresh and could be a hit. Mushrooms were delicious but the pork belly was absolutely revelatory in a city full of takes on the trendy cut.
Other notables on the menu including misubi, kahlua pork fritters, and even some vegetarian inspired dishes.
Very difficult to choose across the menu as most of the dishes look, sound and from my experience, taste, awesome- but for anyone who is nostalgic for their past trip to Hawaii - I'd argue the food at Noreetuh is better than any traditional Hawaiian restaurant I had in my past two trips to the islands. Now all they need is some Mai Tais (only beer/wine for now) to round out the experience...