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Bargain: Friday BBQ Night at Tango Market


Friday night is the time for Goren's famous ribs and a glass of dry French rose at Tango Market.

Dawn Sakamoto

Chef Goran Streng has opened a new restaurant, Tango Market, in the old Satura Cake location at Ward Centre.

It's an extension of his popular Tango restaurant (just a block away in the Hokua condominium). It's casual, order-at-the counter, with desserts and sandwiches, plus a limited selection of Tango entrees. It has both indoor and outdoor seating.

The night not to miss is Friday. That night Streng erects a tent just outside the restaurant and fires up the grill.

It's BBQ night, great reasonably priced plates of cornbread, slaw, seasoned rice and (really good) baked beans, with proteins like New York steak, lemongrass shrimp skewers, teriyaki chicken and Streng's famous ribs.

I didn't know that Streng's ribs were famous until I read the menu. But they are remarkable: meaty, tender. And they taste like ribs. 

Most ribs get smothered in barbecue sauce that obliterates all other flavors. Streng is a veteran, trained chef. His flavors are always clean and controlled. His sauce—sweet, sour, touch of hoisin sauce—is deft, perhaps understated, so that the ribs are allowed to speak for themselves.

We'd ordered a steak (left, $13) and a couple of big combo plates (half portions of shrimp, chicken and ribs, $17.95). How good were the ribs? We immediately went back for another order.

Two other good things. First, you can bring your own wine. Tango Market supplies an iced wine bucket and glasses, no corkage. A nice dry French rose seemed perfect for the ribs and for eating outside. It's a picnic wine. But people were drinking everything from Riesling to cabernets.

Second, Tango Market has a whole range of desserts. Even though Biting Commentary is not a dessert eater, he devoured the sour cherry tart. An adult dessert.

All around us, all night, there were people sitting under the umbrella tables, enjoying themselves with their friends. Fun, casual, outdoors, reasonably priced. What are you doing Friday?

Tango Market is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner daily, Friday night BBQ 5 to 9 p.m. Ward Centre, 1200 Ala Moana Blvd., 596-4888, www.tangomarket.com.



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