2018 Hale ‘Aina Awards


Sept. 17, 2017 from 6:30–9:30 p.m. 

Join us for an evening of fantastic food, creative cocktails and exhilarating entertainment as we celebrate Hawai‘i’s very best restaurants. Take a culinary trip around the world in one evening while you dine on artfully crafted dishes from Hawai‘i’s best chefs. 




Restaurant lineup:

  • Tiki’s Grill & Bar — ‘Ahi tartare, sunny-side up quail egg, house-made harissa, avocado

  • Agu Ramen Bistro — Tomato ramen 

  • Arancino at the Kāhala — chilled cappellini pasta with Moloka‘i ama ebi and caviar

  • Chef Chai — Toasted brioche with foie gras chawan mushi and berries compote

  • Jade Dynasty —Stewed beef brisket and tendon over rice 

  • Yauatcha Waikīkī — Apple vanilla raisin choux

  • Budnamujip — Wooeung gui, pumpkin salad

  • The Pig & The Lady — P&L vegan pho

  • Buho Cocina y Cantina — Charcoal grilled duck and shishito peppers

  • Stage Restaurant — Profiterole with Valrhona caramélia ice cream, smoked bananas foster puree, salted caramel whipped cream, hazelnut praline powder

  • Stripsteak Waikīkī — Shabu Shabu, Allen Brothers prime rib eye, mushroom dashi, watermelon radish

  • Beachhouse at the Moana— Tako taco with smoked tako, mac nut romesco, charred pineapple

  • Pikake Terrace — Southern shrimp and grits with jalapeño cornbread


Use your First Hawaiian Bank credit or debit Mastercard® at checkout and receive a $25 discount off each GENERAL ADMISSION ticket. Enter the first 8-digits of your card number in the promotional code link to redeem this special offer (located immediately above the green ORDER NOW button).  Ticket purchases made with a First Hawaiian Bank Visa, corporate credit card, or any card other than a First Hawaiian Bank Mastercard credit, debit, or small business card will not be eligible for the discount. 


Signature cocktails and beverages:

  • Johnson Brothers of Hawai‘i, Inc.

  • The Cherry Co. LTD

  • Young’s Market and Company of Hawai‘i 

  • Southern Wine & Spirits 

  • Maui Brewing Co. 

  • KōHana Rum 

  • Menehune Water

  • Aloha Beer Co. 



  • Bobby Moderow from Maunalua

  • Micah Ganiron 

  • Hot Club of Hulaville 



Are there ID requirements or an age limit to enter the event?

The Hale ‘Aina Celebration is open to guests of all ages; however consumption of alcoholic beverages at the event is prohibited under state law to guests under the age of 21.

What are my transport/parking options getting to the event?

Self parking is available at the Sheraton Waikīkī or valet parking is available at The Royal Hawaiian, A Luxury Collection Resort.

Where can I contact the organizer with any questions?

Questions about the event can be directed to jeffa@honolulumagazine.com or 808-534-7573.

Do I have to bring my printed ticket to the event?

You are encouraged to bring your paper tickets to the event to make the check-in process more efficient. Should you forget your paper ticket, please check-in by LAST NAME (of the ticket purchaser) at the registration tables.

What is the refund policy?

Ticket purchases made prior to Sept. 1 are eligible for a refund. If a refund is needed, email jeffa@honolulumagazine.com or call 808-534-7573.


About the event

In 1984, HONOLULU Magazine established its Hale ‘Aina Awards as the Islands’ first local restaurant awards. Before then, culinary awards in the Islands had been given by Mainland travel interests. The Hale ‘Aina Awards were the first to recognize local tastes. 

Over the past 30 years, the Hale ‘Aina Awards have been much imitated, but they still stand out, as the most prized dining awards in the Islands.

All HONOLULU readers are eligible to vote. Voting took place in June. A hard copy ballot also appears in the June issue each year. After the ballots are tallied, the magazine designates its readers’ favorite restaurants as Hale ‘Aina Award winners for that year.

Hale ‘Aina means “eating place.” It is the closest Hawaiian equivalent to the word restaurant. But Hale ‘Aina has come to mean the most prestigious dining awards in the Islands. They act as a guide to readers about where to eat, they bolster a restaurant’s reputation and they have been publicized all over the Mainland and Japan.

The Hale ‘Aina Awards also feature a fun and delicious signature event for HONOLULU Magazine. What had started as a potluck celebration in a conference room at the office has grown into a gala celebration. The awards are announced for the first time on Sunday, Sept. 17, 2017 at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort.


The Hale ‘Aina Awards ballot nominations

In each Hale ‘Aina Award category, there are seven available slots for nominations. Four are automatically filled with the gold-, silver- and bronze-award-winning restaurants and the top write-in winner from the previous Hale ‘Aina Awards, in recognition of their demonstrated high quality. Two restaurants are nominated by HONOLULU Magazine’s editorial staff including food and dining editor, Catherine Toth Fox, based on their own research and impressions of Hawai‘i’s dining scene. And lastly, one nomination slot is reserved as a write-in, to allow readers to suggest their own favorite restaurant in each category, if it hasn’t already been nominated.


The Passion fruit creamsicle dessert from STAGE.


Past Hale ‘Aina Award Winners

2017 Hale ‘Aina Award Winners (Best Restaurants in Hawai‘i)

2016 Hale ‘Aina Award Winners (Best Restaurants in Hawai‘i) 

2015 Hale ‘Aina Award Winners (Best Restaurants in Hawai‘i)

2014 Hale ‘Aina Award Winners (Best Restaurants in Hawai‘i)

2013 Hale ‘Aina Award Winners (Best Restaurants in Hawai‘i)