Duke’s Waikiki at Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach

Another hotel restaurant.  I was forced by nostalgia to go to this place.  I had been nine years earlier and I thought it was the kind of place my dad would like.

I was nonplussed by the “famous” salad bar.  It was good but not any more special than any other salad bar I’ve seen.  No special tropical dishes, just regular white mushrooms, sprouts, and pots of dressing.  It was a good salad, just not “famous.”

Dad and I both chose the fresh fish.  I asked what was freshest and the server was quite knowledgeable.  I chose monchong, firecracker style, and Dad chose monchong, Duke’s style.  The fish was superb in flesh and flavor in both styles.  The side of rice had lots of broken grains and was obviously scooped from a big, congealed batch, but Santa Margheritadid have good flavor.  Both styles worked well with this kind of fish, and the firecracker heat was very low, allowing the fish flavor to shine along with the fresh guacamole relish topping.

For the wine, I picked Santa Margherita Pinot Grigio from Italy.  I normally only use Pinot Grigio in making white sangria because its flavor is often too mild to stand against a food pairing.  However, my dad is intolerant of lots of stronger wines, so I thought I would try this wine a friend had recommended.  It was crisp, refreshing, and tasted like fresh apples and light spice.  It was overwhelmed by the firecracker fish, but paired well with the milder fish prep Dad had.  It would be refreshing to drink on the patio on a hot summer day, but too boring to stand alone for long.

Duke’s is fun but tourist-y.  Dad liked it and so did I.

Atmosphere: [rate 3]
Beer Selection: Not rated
Wine Selection: [rate 3]
Food: [rate 3]
Service: [rate 3]

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