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“I must be missing something”

Side Street Inn Kapahulu
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Ranked #120 of 2,370 Restaurants in Honolulu
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $20 - $30
Cuisines: Hawaiian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: Late Night, Reservations
Dining style: Home Style
Cross street: Date St.
Northern California
Level Contributor
29 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“I must be missing something”
Reviewed July 29, 2013

We went to Side Street based on TA reviews and from personal referrals. We ordered wing zings, lilikoi ribs, the famous fried rice, and the garlic chicken. The ribs, rice, and chicken were recommended by the waiter since they were the most popular dishes. There were six ribs were presented nicely but had very little flavor. I was trying to find the lilikoi flavor, but obviously missed it. They were tender but the flavor was nothing special. The rice was good, but not sure what is so special about it. The rice was your basic fried rice. Now for the biggest disappointment, the spicy garlic chicken. It was breaded and deep fried. The garlic flavor was overpowering and it was greasy and fatty. We prefer chicken breast meat and this dish was all dark meat. We barely ate it because of the heavy, greasy consistency. The restaurant was very crowded and very lively. The service was good and the waiter was knowledgeable about the food. This restaurant is highly rated by many sources, so we were expecting something great. I thought maybe it was something we ordered, but according to our waiter, we ordered their most popular items. This restaurant has a following, we just don't understand why? Parking is valet only and is a $5 charge.

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank hulahunny
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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338 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    166
    121
    32
    13
    6
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
10 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Massive food portions and mouth watering!!!”
Reviewed July 23, 2013

Everything on their menu is good. Go with a lot of people and share. Better to have more so you can eat different things. Each dish is huge and can feed 3 people so come with a lot of friends and order more and share!

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
Thank Ruby T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beaverton, OR
Level Contributor
83 reviews
75 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
“Excellent local comfort food in a nice but casual atmosphere”
Reviewed June 27, 2013

We had dinner at the Kapahulu Side Street Inn during a recent visit to Honolulu. I had eaten there during a previous visit, guided by previous local newspaper comments that many of the famous local top chefs like to eat and relax at their Hopaka location.

This is local comfort food--nothing fancy and Asian fusion about it. But like a home-cooked meal of comfort food, Side Street serves it up right. We had their famous pork chops, a Chinese chicken salad, and roast pork yakisoba.

Everything was excellent. The yakisoba particularly surprised me because for some reason i expected it to be so-so. We had very little leftovers to take home after we were done!

Service was attentive and polite. Overall a very nice way to have a really relaxing dinner. Most of the clientele were local folks obviously there to enjoy a good meal after a day of work.

So if you're looking for fine dining with fancy food, you may be better off going to one of Alan Wong's or Roy Yamaguchi's restaurants. But if you want some simple local comfort food while wearing a tee shirt and shorts, Side Street Inn is worth a visit.

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank BeavertonORTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
prov31girl
Level Contributor
37 reviews
22 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Best Meal We Had in 2 Weeks In Hawaii”
Reviewed June 23, 2013

On a recent trip to Oahu I ate dinner here with my husband and brother in law. Our cabbie from the airport said this was the "in" place with locals, and he was right! [tip: always ask cabbies and other locals for food tips!!!] We had a lot of great food all over Oahu, but this was our best meal of a 2 week trip. We didn't make a reservation so we had about an hour wait (no prob - we walked up the street for a Malasada "appetizer" at Leonards!). Def make a reservation if you have the time to plan ahead. I usually don't care much about fried rice, but I read their's was great so we ordered some. It was the best I have ever eaten! We also agreed the Lilikoi (passion fruit) ribs were the best we've ever eaten. My bil loved his seared tuna and we all enjoyed the Nalo Greens salad. Yes, dishes came out one at a time but we didn't care because we knew that's how they serve things and ordered stuff we all wanted to share. If you are not sharing with others at your table, this could be a problem. I suppose you could let your server know that? When we return to Oahu, we will def eat here again and again.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank prov31girl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Honolulu, Hawaii
1 review
“So so...”
Reviewed June 8, 2013

Just ate a late lunch and nothing exciting or worthwhile to report. The decor was nice and one large group present and four smaller groups. Our table had no cutlery or napkins when we were seated and we had to request them after the food was served. Waiter not attentive, drink sat empty for awhile.

Refills of soft drinks were NOT free, very annoying. Any restaurant that believes in this policy, in this day and age, needs to get with the times.

I tried the prime rib sliders and my companion tried the bacon cheeseburger. They were happy but I was disappointed. The fries provided with each entree were plentiful. Two of my three sliders were tough to bite thru. Very annoying to have to hold onto the meat and tear apart with your teeth, especially on a slider!!!! Try practicing with large rubber bands before you go (if you plan to try them, that is). The burger was good, apparently.

Parked on the street at metered parking because we weren't sure what the rules of the parking lot were.

May go back again but most likely not, need to give lots of other restaurants a chance before repeating.

Good luck!!

  • Visited June 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank whatsitallmean
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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