Simple Pleasures in TOWN
Kaimuki adds another friendly bistro
destined to become cool, hip & trendy
Town opened just a few weeks ago, but this stylish Kaimuki bistro
has hit its stride.
We arrived 20 minutes early for our 7 o’clock reservation.
It was a Friday night, and the evening rush was on. Still, we were seated within
a couple minutes of our arrival. We found the service all evening to be
attentive and efficient.
Town’s décor is quietly contemporary, with dark wood
accents set against muted sage green and orange. The room’s acoustics play up
the sound of chatter, probably due to the predominance of hard surfaces
(stainless steel tabletops, polished concrete floor).
I was very hungry, so the complimentary starter brought by our
waiter, Jonas, was especially welcome: a few slices of good bread, served simply
with a slice of softened butter & a scattering of olives.
For an appetizer, we shared an order of salt cod brandade
fritters ($6.50). Brandade, a Provencal dish, consists of a puree of salt cod
mixed with olive oil and potatoes. The trio
of warm fritters as prepared by Chef David Caldiero had a crisp, golden coating of panko. Accompaniments were garlic mayonnaise and malt vinegar, served in twin demitasse cups.
The tomato-ginger soup ($6) was a standout: two bright,
intense flavors in an ideal balance. Topped with a chiffonade of fresh mint, the
soup was smooth and delectable. My companion ordered a salad of beets, orange,
watercress, mint, and gorgonzola, with a poppy seed dressing ($8.50) – one of
three composed salads on the menu.
The courses at Town are sized so you can eat several – and
you’ll want to. If you like wine or beer with your dinner, you will need to
bring your own. The charge per glass is $3.50.
My entrée was mint pasta with lamb ragout ($18), a pleasant
take on the traditional pairing of lamb with mint. The wide, green noodles had
just the right tender bite. A fresh mint garnish amplified the pasta’s mild
flavor. The dish was topped with a few shavings of Pecorino Romano.
My companion ordered moi ($19), which came on a bed of warm
white bean salad with wilted arugula, and salsa verde. The filet was moist and
rich, enhanced with a lightly crisp coating.
The dessert list was so intriguing we had to give it a try.
Actually, we sampled two: the almond olive oil cake ($6) – a just-sweet-enough
cake served with peeled chunks of orange and grapefruit. The cake, studded with
roasted almonds, comes with a generous dollop of whipped cream. The chocolate
banini ($6) – a dessert panini – arrived cut into quarters, like a child’s
snack. It was so good that we had a minor tussle over who got the last one (and
ended up splitting it).
Town is a great place to go for simple food that is well
prepared and presented with a bit of whimsy. The bill including tax but not the
tip (without alcohol) was $73.
Waialae Avenue #103
Hours are Monday to Thursday,
6:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.,
Friday & Saturday 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
6:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Lunch, 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Dinner 5:30 p.m. to close
BYOB; glass charge is $3.50/person
Reservations are recommended;
Parking behind building or on street.
Major credit cards accepted.