After our wedding, we went on our honeymoon to Phuket (Thailand) and then our own separate ways. B went to Honolulu while I went to Las Vegas and Honolulu was a bucks. We did manage to squeeze in one meal together at Honolulu and that turned out to be one of the best Japanese meals we have had for a long time. The place was called Chiba Ken and was tucked away on Ena Street (still in Waikiki but around a 5-10 minutes walk away from the busy strip). We arrived at 6pm and were able to be seated without a booking, but within an hour the place was packed and customers needed to start lining up outside. The restaurant isn’t huge and seats around 10 people around the sushi counter, another 4 or 5 tables inside the restaurant and a further 4 or 5 tables outside.
Below is a series of photos of the dishes we had. From memory we ordered the cold spinach appetiser, miso butterfish, soft shell crab sushi roll, cold tofu appetiser, tuna sushi, mixed tempura and chirashi special. All the dishes were well executed and prepared fresh daily by the sushi chefs working behind the sushi counter. The dishes that had us talking and still dreaming about were the buttery flaky texture of the miso butterfish and the explosion of subtle flavours from the generous sashimi variety in the chirashi special. I love ordering chirashi when I go to Japanese restaurants as it always gives a nice variety of sashimi on a bed of sushi rice (like DIY sushi) but I’ve been forever spoilt now after having the chirashi special at Chiba Ken which consisted of sea urchin (I mean SERIOUSLY?!), fatty tuna, tuna, scallops, abalone, prawn, roe and all the other usual ones like salmon and egg.
The service at Chiba-Ken matched the food, and was professional and attentive without ever being obtrusive. Highly recommended and one of the best Japanese meals we have had at a reasonable price!
Chiba-Ken Japanese Restaurant
468 Ena Road Waikiki