Butcher & Bird Launches Pop-Ups Featuring Furloughed and Underemployed Chefs
It starts Sunday, Oct. 25, when you’ll have three hours to get smoked tako-chorizo gyoza and other grilled goodness.
I am so torn when it comes to deciding what I love more: the casualness of smoky Texas-style barbecue with a craft beer, or a succession of small plates and shochu in a cozy izakaya. If I could find a seat between the two worlds, I wouldn’t leave.
Enter Butcher & Bird. The Kaka‘ako butcher shop and eatery is hosting BBQzakaya, a pop-up this Sunday, Oct. 25, from 4 to 7 p.m. An early menu scrawled on butcher paper lists wafu brisket, smoked tako-chorizo gyoza, six kinds of yakitori skewers and other bites of grilled and smoky goodness.
Ricky Goings—who has worked in many local kitchens including Pai Honolulu, Sushi ii and He‘eia Kea Pier General Store & Deli—is the pop-up’s first featured chef. He spent a decade cooking in Japan before making Hawai’i home and joining the team at Mō‘ili‘ili’s now-shuttered izakaya Aki-no-No. Goings is also the driving force behind Jack’s Rib Shack, an upscale barbecue delivery service housed within Butcher & Bird.
BBQzakaya is the first pop-up of a new series called 2 Burners and a 24. The name is a play on the two gas burners and 24-inch flattop that constitute Butcher & Bird’s cooking setup. Charles Wakeman, the butcher, says his goal is to give furloughed and underemployed chefs the experience of working in a tiny kitchen to broaden their options—who knows? They might work in a food truck someday, or a 500-square-foot micro restaurant. Upcoming pop-ups will feature Neale Asato of the popular sherbert-serving Asato Family Shop and David Lukela of Alohilani Resort.
There are no reservations for Sunday’s event; seating is on a first-come, first-served basis and is limited to 20 people. There’s also no prix fixe menu: You order a la carte at the counter. BYOB is encouraged, and takeout is always an option. I don’t know of any shochu bar nearby, but you can take your BBQzakaya purchases over to the nearby Village Bottle Shop to enjoy with a good craft beer or two.