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Monday, April 5, 2010

A Waikiki Bar That's Genius

A Waikiki Bar That's Genius

Genius Lounge attracts a casual crowd of Waikiki residents.

Photos: Soni Kohut

A friend on the third floor lanai overlooking Lewers Street.
The menchi (beef) katsu.

Banana cake.

Genius Lounge Sake Bar & Grill is what Waikiki needed. While other Waikiki bars are either filled to the rim with tourists, or reek of sweat and alcohol, this bar exudes charm and romance with a perfect first date-appeal. The bar is hidden away on the third floor of what used to be an apartment building on Lewers Street, and would remain invisible to a passer-by if not for the signage out front.

The building is Spanish influenced with wrought iron everywhere, a vaulted ceiling with exposed beams and tiled tabletops. You can sit on one of the two candle-lit lanai overlooking the street below or, inside at the bar watching one of the flat screen TVs. There is also a separate room for larger parties. I loved the attention to detail from the hand-painted water pitchers right down to the terry cotton towelettes. What also impressed me was the menu—it had a very large and tasty selection to choose from.

The food is Japanese. Start with edamame ($4.50) or poke ($8). Pick a beef ($8), pork ($12) or fish ($10) katsu. There are also various noodles, soups and salads. Or, order a mini filet mignon ($15), citrus pepper chicken ($9) or pork and veggie skewers ($8). And, I couldn’t help but order the banana cake ($6) with vanilla bean gelato for dessert. The drink menu is even more robust with cocktails, wines, a number of different sake and three sake samplers with three 2-ounce shots ($10-$11).

346 Lewers Street, Waikiki. Open 6 to 2 a.m. every day, happy hour from 6 to 8 p.m. (808) 626-5362.

Posted on Monday, April 5, 2010 in Permalink

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About This Column

This Kamehameha Schools and UH graduate manages the website for HONOLULU. In her free time she researches Hawaiian genealogy, when she’s not out and about or taking care of her 5-year-old son. She blogs about Honolulu bars, Hawaii nightlife and entertainment.

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