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“French Gone Hawaiian” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Chef Mavro

Chef Mavro
1969 South King Street, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96826
+1 808-944-4714
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Ranked #169 of 1,927 Restaurants in Honolulu
Price range: $85 - $128
Cuisines: American, French, Hawaiian, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Dinner, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: McCully
Transit: From Waikiki get on TheBus #2 (School St./Middle St.) at Kuhio & Seaside. Get off at S. King St. and walk 10 minutes to Chef Mavro 1969 S. King St. Taxi is recommended. If driving, parking lot entrance is from S. King.
Description: Taste the flavors of Hawaii and Provence paired with exciting wine pairings that earn the highest food rating in Hawaii (18/20 Gayot). Flexible course menus include lobster, wagyu beef, onaga, pork, lamb & local produce. Romantic occasions & business entertaining. James Beard award. AAA Five Diamonds. Don't miss the flight of sustainable caviar & the Grand Tasting Menu. Mavro's brigade of young chefs share his philosophy: always buy the best and freshest, buy local, treat all products with great respect, and start afresh every season with new ideas and creative recipes.
New York
Top Contributor
106 reviews 106 reviews
47 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 45 cities Reviews in 45 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
“French Gone Hawaiian”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2014

Chief Mavro is an affable person, who winds his way around the dining room. He should spend less time in the dining room and more in the kitchen. His dishes tend to be sweet, with some odd ingredients making at times a combination that is not befitting the food. On the whole, we had a good meal, but when Chief Mavro would produce a better meal is he went back to his French roots and produced some of the more classic, all be it Nouvelle French dishes.

  • Visited June 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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197 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Midland, Michigan
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Well known Chef in Hawaii and excellent foods!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2014

The restaurant is small but inside was fancy. It a short drive from Waikiki hotels. Expect this restaurant is really expensive. The service are well attentive and the 6 courses menu are very delicious! All the foods are very fresh and local picked. I was very picky vegetable eater and I don't normally like to eat vegetables but Mavro did successful delivery a delicious veggies dish and I ate it all! We are lucky to have a little chat with Chef Mavro! I wished we could have a photo with him but he was too busy. I would recommend this restaurant if you are looking for fantastic foods and don't mind the cost because you only go once.

  • Visited July 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 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.
ChefMavroRestaurant, Owner at Chef Mavro, responded to this review, July 13, 2014
Thank you for your review which was rewarding to all of our team. We are glad that you noticed the freshness and local sources of our ingredients and that you found everything delicious. Next time just ask if you'd like to take a photo with Chef Mavro. This is a frequent request and Chef Mavro always makes time for guests who want a photo. We hope to welcome you again!
Aloha, Donna Mavro
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hawaii
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“Great Flavors, Seating too close, wine service in decline”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2014

I have previously posted my approval and enjoyment of the food here at Mavro’s. The food is great and every season a new menu is set along with excellent wine selections to be paired with each dish. My last two visits have been less than my previous experiences and this is the focus of this up to date review.
The seating is so tight that you cannot help but be part of neighboring tables conversation. The booths or separate tables are very limited but I would recommend requesting one otherwise you are rolling the dice with whom your table mates will be. Incredibly enough we had a couple next to us once who stayed on their phones texting, taking photos, but not conversing. This was amusing but much better than our next visit where got to sit next to a group of local attorneys who blessed the entire room with their conversation and dominated our conversation. How close? Without leaning forward I could touch the table next to us.
The second is a matter of preference and some will appreciate this. The wine service is not what is has been in the past. You still get great pairing but when they say you get 1.5 oz, that is what you get and only 1.5 oz. Did they take a little longer getting your dish out so you took an extra sip? Well too bad, your glass will not be refreshed, and you can finish your dish with water. And it is not just that, something has clearly changed with their wine service, and it has not been for the better.
Honolulu has fantastic dining options and Mavro’s is part of the scene. They will do fine seeing us less but I hope they do consider making some changes.

  • Visited May 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 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.
ChefMavroRestaurant, Owner at Chef Mavro, responded to this review, July 13, 2014
Thank you for taking time to describe your most recent dinner. We were happy to read that your previous dinners were positive experiences and that you say «The food is great and every season a new menu is set along with excellent wine selections to be paired with each dish.” Of course it’s upsetting to learn that this time your dinner was disturbed by other guests and that the wine service on your table was not up to our precise standards. We are especially sorry that we did not react to your dissatisfaction while you were here. Normally we can easily move you to one of our more private tables and if the wine service is not correct we can make it right. We have investigated what happened on your table and have made adjustments to avoid disappointment at even one table.

As you may know our standard for the Chef’s Menu of 7 courses is to pour 2 oz. of wine for each dish which makes over half bottle per guest. Our standard for the Hana Hou menu of 4 courses is to pour 4 oz. of wine per dish and 2 oz. of dessert wine which makes over half bottle per guest.

Each of us in our small family business is deeply committed to guest satisfaction so you can imagine how seriously we take your comments. We ask only that you give us another chance to give you the flawless experience that you deserve.
Aloha, Donna Mavro
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Creative, delicious prix fixe dinner with attentive service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2014

"Oh oh" I thought, after reading some of the yelp reviews for Chef Mavro's. I had already made reservations. Will this be one of those dinners where we spend a a small fortune, eat foam and single bites of food, and have to stop at Zippy's on the way home?

It turned out to be a wonderful, memorable dinner. Creative use of local ingredients, using classical style and high finesse . We ordered the 7 course tasting menu -- it includes the abalone, foie gras, lobster, duck, wagyu beef, cheese, and chocolate desserts. Many of the dishes are presented as a trio of preparations - so you get a contrast in flavors and textures. The cheese course was an unexpected delight -- chevre with lemon zest and chives, with island honey, arugula and ogo. It doesn't sound like it should work, but the saltiness of the ogo and cheese are offset by the sweetness of the honey and the tang of the lemon.

The decor was beautiful. You quickly forget King Street is just out the door. Dramatic tropic flower arrangement in the center of the room, torch ginger in sconces, protea on each table. Soft lightening and -- gasp -- you can actually talk to your dinner companions without shouting. Chef Mavro circulated through the dining room twice during the evening we were there, greeting each table and answering guests' questions.

At $165 per person, Chef Mavro's is comparably priced relative prix fixe menus at NY, LA, LV or SF restaurants like Per Se, French Laundry, Manresa, or Restaurant Daniel. (Yes, this is bit more expensive than Alan Wong's or 3660 -- which are wonderful restaurants -- but this is a 7 course fine dining experience.) Not for every day or even every month. But a nice option for a special event.

The premium wine pairing at $95 for 7 pours is a good deal. Some of the pairing were more successful than others (the Jean-Marc Brocard Chablis didn't work with the lobster trio and I wasn't wild about the Wakatake Daiginjo sake with the abalone course) but there was significant creativity in the wine selection and the sommelier deserves kudos for taking risks and not just going with obvious choices (loved the Boxler Gewurztraminer with foie gras trio and the Bodega Catena Zapata Malbec with the wagyu beef).

Service was very attentive and warm, but not obsequious or intrusive. (Entrees presented to table together, dishes sauced tableside, details of each course explained as served, questions answered knowledgeably, water and bread constantly replenished (wait - did I just eat my 3rd roll?), napkins refolded when diners excused themselves from the table, doors held open.)

Other reviews commented on the pacing of the dinner. There is a break between each course but it's not fair to attribute that to poor service. Clearly, the Chef has a concept of how he would like to pace the dinner service. Sip your wine, talk to your dinner companions. OK, it wouldn't come to Chef Mavro's for a quick pre-theater or concert dinner. But if you are celebrating a special event or having dinner out with friends where dinner is the main event of the evening, then 7 course dinner over 3+ hours is a pleasure to be savored.

Perhaps one of the most creative and enjoyable dinners in Hawaii.

  • Visited June 2014
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ChefMavroRestaurant, Owner at Chef Mavro, responded to this review, July 13, 2014
Thank you for appreciating all the details of your dining experience! And for letting other TripAdvisor fans know what to expect at Chef Mavro restaurant. It was very inspiring for our staff to know that you noticed and enjoyed so many things. All our team works to adjust those details to the very individual preferences of each guest. Some do arrive at 6 p.m. and leave in time for an 8 p.m. curtain! For others dinner is the entertainment for the evening.
We look forward to welcoming you again in the future.
Aloha, Donna Mavro
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Perfect from beginning to end”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2014

Hubby and I recently dined at Chef Mavro and had the tasting menu or degustation. Everything from the superb service (deferential without being stiff or fake) to the food and matching wines was fabulous. We actually dined on the first night that Chef Mavro was bringing back two of his most famous dishes: the Onaga baked in salt crust and lilikoi malasadas. I'm glad that we got the chance to try these iconic dishes. If you're on holidays, save one night for this or if you live in Oahu (lucky you!) and go for a romantic dinner.

  • Visited June 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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