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“Go for the view and the service, but the food is not worth it.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of La Mer - L'Aperitif

La Mer - L'Aperitif
2199 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815
808-923-2311
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Ranked #10 of 1,913 restaurants in Honolulu
Price range: $40 - $250
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Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Special occasions
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Dining style: Fine Dining
Cross street: Lewers Street
Description: La Mer is far more than a restaurant, it’s a degustation destination. Celebrated as Halekulani’s finest and Hawaii's longest, consecutively ranked AAA Five Diamond Restaurant, this consummate dining experience is unmatched. The internationally acclaimed menu features Neoclassic French cuisine expertly crafted and served amid majestic and romantic ocean views of Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head. Indigenous ingredients are uniquely blended in masterful dishes inspired by flavors from the south of France to produce an unsurpassed dining experience. An award-winning wine list is available to complement the perfect dining experience. Jacket or long sleeve dress shirt, slacks and dress shoes are required for men. As an elegant fine dining restaurant, La Mer restricts patrons to adults and children 8 years or older.
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Go for the view and the service, but the food is not worth it.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2012 via mobile

We dined at La Mer to celebrate our wedding anniversary. Let me start with the positives: the staff were brilliant: we started with complimentary champagne, which was a nice touch; the view is one of the best in Honolulu; and there was a suitable resting time between courses.
The negatives: why must men where a long sleeve shirt to a restaurant that should be casual in 80 degree heat? - I was asked to roll down my sleeves - we are in the 21st century; the staff at the hotel were completely disinterested in assisting us to get to the restaurant; the food was French styled but clearly cooked by someone who is not French as it lacked the delicacy of fine French cuisine - my souffle was more like a bread and butter pudding; and the presentation of the food could not make up for the lack of finesse of the chef.
Overall we enjoyed the evening thanks to the lovely setting, but La Mer is certainly not a 5 star restaurant, rather a 3 star with the price and pretentiousness of a higher quality establishment.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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254 reviews from our community

85% Recommend
    180
    38
    23
    5
    8
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Mississauga, Canada
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
13 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
“Impeccable Service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2012

My husband and I dined at La Mer with 2 other couples. It was a Monday evening at 7:45, and I think there were only 2 other tables occupied, so the restaurant was not busy at all. We were seated at a table close to the beach, so the view was gorgeous.

We all had the menu degustation without the wine pairings. We also ordered caviar, as some members of our party had never had caviar before. I have had caviar before with my husband, and they have always just opened the tin, and left it to us to scoop up the caviar. At La Mer, they actually divided up the caviar for all us, and put it on our plates. I never had that happen before, so needless to say, I was quite impressed. It came with the usual accompaniments, and those little pancakes were cooked fresh, as you could still feel the oil when you touched them.

The food was excellent, and was explained as each course was brought out, which is standard for any tasting menu. I have enjoyed many fabulous tasting menus, but the service at La Mer was the best by far. It was at another level. Maybe it was because the restaurant was not busy at all, as I believe our party was the only one dining by 9pm, but hopefully their service is always that spectacular regardless of how busy they are.

To sum it up, the tasting menu was excellent, but I have enjoyed other tasting menus more, but the service was unbelievable, and I doubt I will ever experience that level of service again in my lifetime. That was how impeccable the service was.

Visited July 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Superb - A 5 star experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2012

My now fiancé and I dinned at La Mer as the last installment of a full day planned proposal. The day had gone 100% to plan and my partner was overwhelmed. As we stepped out of the Limousine and made our way to the restaurant I was hoping that La Mer lived up to expectation as the day had been perfect so far. La Mer did not disappoint, it was certainly the icing on the cake. I have eaten at many AGFG hat restaurants and La Mer was up among the best. Admittedly it is one of the more expensive restaurants on the island but well worth it. The ambiance, the view, the food and the service were in my opinion the best in Hawaii. A 5 star experience.

  • Visited August 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Berlin, Germany
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Fantastic Meal”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2012

My wife and I had dinner at La Mer Friday night. This was by far the best meal I have had in 20 years living in Hawaii.The food, service, and wine pairings were all fantastic. My wife had the 3 course dinner and I had the 4 course meal. Every course was great. We had the staff choose wine pairings for the dishes we ordered and the wines were spot on. Although this was expensive the pours were very generous and it certainly enhanced the meal. I also can't say enough about the level of service that the staff provided, the attention to detail was superb and with out being intrusive to our evening or being overwelmed by an army of staff. The experiance was expensive but well worth it. We have dined extensivly across the country and Europe and I am trying hard to remember a better meal but I can't.

  • Visited August 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Scarsdale, NY
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Waikiki Gem”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2012

Save up your money for this one - it is worth it. Expensive - yes but wonderful from the view, to the greeting, to the service to the food - everything was perfect. And they care about theie guests - we ate later in the evening and the waiter moved us to a waterfront table in time for our main course - this was over and above and not insignificant. Great place.

  • Visited July 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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