G7.JPGNo, we missed the Happy Hour 50% Off Special, but we are planning to go back super early another day. The shabu shabu place had given me the runaround about a table (They figured out we’re Americans!), so we went for yakiniku. Gyu-Kaku is a cool, open-late restaurant near Ala Moana that has great rice. They really do; I’m picky about rice. I got it from my ex-husband. I gotta have good rice.

When I go to Pietro’s, I find the proprietary atmospheric shout-outs (“Irrasshaimasse!”) annoying, but somehow in Gyu-Kaku it’s ok. Maybe it’s the dark wood, low lit, den-like ambience. Or maybe it’s just the correct inflection/pronunciation. I dunno. When the servers turn in orders, they shout “Order onegai shimas!” & the kitchen responds “Hai yorokonde!” I actually like that. Great psychological attitude booster.

G2.JPG G4.JPG G1.JPGGyu-Kaku, as their signage says, uses a charcoal grill with what must be an extremely well-working vent because even when we made Big Fire at our table, I couldn’t smell the smoke, only the food.

I ordered asparagus (they were out of the enoki shrooms. I cry!), liver, beef tongue, fatty pork, & salmon. And rice. Just for me. Yeah, what was I thinking. I don’t know what my friends ordered, except that Tako treated himself to the $18 Kobe Beef. I’ve had bluefin tuna that cost $15 a slice & was worth it, so this wasn’t bad at all, considering the look on my friend’s face as he ate his steak. You go, Tako.

G3.JPG G5.JPG G6.JPG I’ve been to Gyu-Kaku a lot, & service has always been great. We were seated & greeted almost immediately, our drinks came right away, our server was always there but non-intrusive, even when he did a 3rd grill change for us. They kept our waters filled & no one ran out of beer… for very long. And that’s pretty good!

We don’t even know any of these guys personally. Now that’s something in Hawaii.

G8.JPGI ended up taking the salmon home & forcing the guys to help finish the meats I’d ordered. It was really good, but my eyes had really been too big for my stomach.

The guys protested every time I wanted to take a picture of something. Whiners. Here’s a shot of us looking like a bunch of pot-bellied pigs.

On a side note, the salmon was really good the next day.

9 Comments so far

  1. cara (unregistered) on September 21st, 2005 @ 9:51 am

    is this the place by the pancake house on kapiolani? if it is, i had always wondered about it…it’s only 9am here at work today (where are you by the way?!!!) and now you made me hungry!

  2. carey (unregistered) on September 21st, 2005 @ 10:08 am

    mmm gyukaku! but where’s the harami??

  3. Stacie (unregistered) on September 21st, 2005 @ 11:08 pm

    thanks for the invite =\ since I wasn’t invited I’m not commenting.

  4. Tako (unregistered) on September 22nd, 2005 @ 2:06 am

    Too picture happy I tell you. Nice blog, Shabu Shabu NEXT WEEK! Yes, I be the fat guy who ordered the kobe, I love that meat… so good…yum…

    Dinner and a hotel? what? ROFL JUST JOKING LAUREN!

  5. Carmen (unregistered) on September 22nd, 2005 @ 2:55 pm

    Wow… looked like you guys had a great time while I was at home cooking food that I couldn’t eat until the next day… =P

  6. Phil (unregistered) on September 25th, 2005 @ 5:41 am

    I ninja’d some of Tako’s kobe. :D

  7. Channon (unregistered) on October 13th, 2005 @ 2:51 pm

    I like Gyukaku a lot, but its a little expensive to have to cook yourself…

    I have a co-worker who goes with his gf and her friends at least once a week, they’re crazy.

  8. velvetacide (unregistered) on October 17th, 2005 @ 4:29 pm

    Have you tried TORAJI on Kapahulu yet? It’s more “korean-ish” than Gyukaku, but it’s another chain from Japan. Very yummy. Gyukaku has become sort of stale (I’m sorry, but it has) for me and Toraji is a good way to mix things up a bit. AND RICE! I’m extremely picky about rice. Enough to annoy most of my friends. I used to gawk at people pouring shoyu on rice, but I think I understand why…most rice here ‘needs’ it. I need muthaland rice. After all these years in the U.S., I still can’t adjust. RICE RICE BABY! :-P

  9. Keith H (unregistered) on October 21st, 2005 @ 1:07 am

    Cool place to eat, Thanks for the invite

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