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5 of the Best Japanese Restaurants in Honolulu

You’ll find Hawaii’s best Japanese restaurants in Honolulu. After all, Oahu is a very popular destination for Japanese tourists.

With so many dining options in the city, it can be hard to know where to eat, so this list will get you off on the right foot.

Here are 5 of the best Japanese restaurants in Honolulu:

Sushi Izakaya Gaku

A local favorite, Sushi Izakaya Gaku offers delicious sushi and entrees, great service, and some of the most authentic Japanese food around. Chef Manabu Kikuchi puts thought and care into every item and is constantly experimenting with traditional Japanese recipes.

With so many great dishes and a constantly changing list of specials, you’ll definitely be coming back for more.

Marukame Udon Waikiki

There’s always a line at this famous noodle house, because the food is so good…and so cheap. You’ll want to join in too when you see their handmade udon, tempura, and musubis. The setup is cafeteria style, giving you the freedom to choose what you want.

No matter what you get, you can be assured it will be fresh and taste excellent, and you can often get a full meal for well under $10.

After seeing the great food and low prices for yourself, the long lines start to make sense.

Izakaya Torae Torae

At Izakaya Torae Torae, you’ll find an expansive menu, with a ton of appetizers, sushi, and small plates to choose from.

There are Japanese dishes galore, and be sure to check out the signature pork belly kakuni, the sashimi, and the vegetable and shrimp tempura. You can also find fusion items like a cheese-stuffed hamburger patty and green tea gelato.

Any visit to Izakaya Torae Torae is guaranteed to have good food and good experiences.

Nanzan GiroGiro

The system at Nanzan GiroGiro is unique: they have one set menu that changes every month.

That means that the chefs prepare and perfect a six-course meal, based on whatever ingredients they can get freshest at the time of year. The experience is different in that you don’t have a choice what you eat, but the chefs here really know what they’re doing, so it’s guaranteed to be amazing.

Past menu items have included Hamachi sashimi, rare grill beef, crab and fish cake, udon noodles, eel omelet, duck donburi, and all sorts of others. Of course, during your vacation the menu will be new and unique, so you’ll have to go find out what they’ve cooked up this time.

As a bonus, the restaurant even includes an art gallery in the back, for a true “fine dining” experience.

Musubi Café Iyasume

Musubi Café Iyasume offers a more low-key dining experience, but it’s great if you want good Japanese food at affordable prices. There are several locations in Honolulu, including one that’s close to Waikiki beach.

If you want to spend more time on the beach than eating indoors, this is a great joint to stop by and grab a quick bite.

Their specialty is Musubi, a popular Japanese snack food which consists of rice and a filler, such as meat, wrapped in seaweed. While you’re here, you should definitely try the Hawaiian version, Spam Musubi, which consists of Spam on rice that is wrapped in seaweed. Spam Musubi is much better than it sounds, and Musubi Café Iyasumi offers plenty of great variations.


These are just a few of the best Japanese restaurants in Honolulu – you’d be surprised at how many there are in this city.

For more info on Honolulu, Honolulu dining, and the best Japanese restaurants in Honolulu, visit Hawaii Discount’s travel blog.

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