Food Finds: East Oahu
An off-the-beaten-path find, Your Kitchen is a hidden gem tucked away in Palolo Valley dishing up contemporary Hawaii plate lunch favorites so good you wish you could cook them at home.
The husband-and-wife team that run Your Kitchen, Yasuyuki and Yukiko Asakura, are typically the only people behind the counter and distinguishable by their matching red caps, quiet kindness and warm aloha spirit. Here, regulars pig out -- alongside afterschool keiki (children) and the Kaimuki business crowd - on local favorites like grilled pork spareribs and Japanese beef stew.
Waikiki Parc's Todd T. recommends calling in advance to make sure they're open but when they are, he goes loco for Your Kitchen's loco moco and broiled pork bowl. The pork bowl features a fatty cut of beef braised in ginger soy sauce so delicate and melt-in-your-mouth good it pairs deliciously with the soft-boiled egg it comes with.
The limited seating inside - a single table and bench -- makes the perfect excuse to escape the Hawai‘i heat and take your lunch outside to enjoy on a bench, while taking in Palolo's colorful characters. For dessert scoop up a bowl of Your Kitchen's shave ice - their mango syrup is pulpy and tastes of real mango. If you go for the azuki bowl - a dish overflowing with shaved ice, green tea ice cream, azuki beans and condensed milk, make sure to get your own. It's so good we can never bring ourselves to share.