We are at Solimene's Restaurant today for lunch. I have been looking forward to trying this place for a while. I have heard good things about it. On first impression, the place is small and intimate, there is only seating for roughly 50 people. Their menu consists of, you guessed it, pizza, pasta, and panini. I started with the coffee. It's good coffee. I don't have to add sugar. This is always one of my criteria for telling if it has good flavor, in this coffee mecca called Hawaii. Leise ordered the root beer float. She likes it except for the cheap plastic glass in which it is served.
I am hungry so everything is looking good, upon recommendation I ordered the “Pasta Rustica: Sweet Sicilian sausage tops this chunky tomato sauce chock full of peppers, mushrooms and onions. Served over rigatoni.” The smells coming from the kitchen are amazing. Scents of rosemary, chicken and garlic grilling and so much more. As I take my first bite I feel my body relax with the knowledge we made a good restaurant choice today. The sauce is tasty. The pasta is just a little al dente. I don't usually like al dente because, to me, it is too chewy. This is just the perfect amount. I now understand pasta done right. Next, I move on to the Sicilian sausage. OMG!!! It is delicious. Lots of zesty spice. I tell Leise I could sit here all day and eat this sausage. Wow is this good!!
As I look up and around to the world outside the restaurant I have a new vision of the world. This new vision includes a restaurant which I will return to again and again.
Leise had ordered the Solimene's House Salad, which consists of arugula, slivered pears, candied walnuts, gorgonzola, raspberry vinaigrette and grilled shrimp... She loved it!
I definitely give the place 4.5 stars for food, 4 star for ambience.
James C. Christopher
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