kruizing with kikukat

Monday, November 5, 2012

Restaurant Chatter: Sansei

calamari salad
Its been a long time since I did a Restaurant Chatter post, so I thought it would be a good time to stick one in.  Sansei is definitely one of my favorite restaurants, and the Ds also enjoy going there.  My first Sansei meal was nearly a decade ago.  UMiles, AKathy, Dus & I had dinner at the Sansei in Restaurant Row (Honolulu).  I remember the mango crab salad roll being unbelievably tasty, and I can proudly say that I have never failed to order it at each subsequent visit.

asparagus tempura
Sansei has multiple restaurants on several islands, but of course, the one I frequent most is Sansei Waikoloa since I don't need to hop on a plane to get to it.  The first time I went to Sansei Waikoloa, The Help and I decided to order the set tasting menu.  It was a good deal, but after a while, I got tired of the sweet chili flavor, as more than 2 dishes had sweet chili sauce. . .including the mango crab salad roll.  Since that time, we've stayed away from the tasting menu and ordered specific plates.

grilled shiitake mushrooms in ponzu
After a brutal week, driving out to the west side for a day of shopping and ending with a leisurely dinner at Sansei is a real treat.  I sure could have used the treat this weekend.  Work this past week began with two days of training.  I guess that doesn't sound bad, but I was one of the trainers.  It was the same training repeated 2 days in a row to a group of administrators.  I must say that the majority of administrators in my area (school level) are competent and know their stuff.  But all it takes is one idiot to make the whole group look bad.

shrimp tempura
must have the ikura sushi
And one of them was a major pain in the ass.  She asked questions, and everytime the answer was given, her response was either, "well, yes, I know that, but. . ." or "yes, but. . .".  Well, why fucking ask if you supposedly know the answer???  If we did not adequately answer your question, it might be because your questions demonstrated a pervasive lack of vocabulary and content mastery.  Trying to cover up your shortcomings by asking a lot of questions did not fool anyone.  You are not impressing other administrators, and you are certainly not impressing the High Commander. 

Because Halloween fell in the middle of the week, I was busy doing the treats thing.  D1 made mini layered rainbow cupcakes, and my job was to frost them.  I also ended up doing a lot of the cake mix portion too.  D2 made it easy for me.  She wanted to pass out bags of candy to her classmates.  The only stipulation was there needed to be a dumdum pop in the bag.  I went to 3 stores before I found the dumdums!  The Ds went to a party with Mr. Dependable, and I went out to dinner.  I was rather surprised to see children at the restaurant.  I would've thought they'd be out trick-or-treating.

an older pic, but it reminds me of fun times
The secretary at work was encouraging everyone to dress up, but I didn't.  I have no costume, and since I had a parent conference scheduled for the afternoon, it affirmed my decision to wear my everyday spooky face.  D1 went as Minnie Mouse and D2 went as a Spanish dancer.  I really wanted D2 to buy the ostrich rider costume, but she nixed that idea.

ahi carpaccio
mango crab salad roll
In spite of all the candy nibbling, I decided to do my blood test on the morning after Halloween.  If it comes back bad, then at least I know how I can improve it.  I celebrated the blood test being over by indulging in a plate of tinoni (crispy fried pork belly with onions and tomato in a vinegar sauce).  I have to go see Dr. KO next week, so I plan to indulge myself until the hammer drops then.  When I went to the Keaau Village Market to buy my tinoni plate, I noticed a new filipino stall opened up.  I will need to try the adobo from Uncle Ben's the next time I go.

rainbow roll
caramel apple tart
I was really hoping to get to Sansei Waikoloa this past weekend, but it certainly didn't happen.  There was too much to do at home.  We spent Saturday cleaning "problem areas" of the house (actually, the whole house is a problem).  I also waited over an hour in the parking lot by Lalakea while D1 met her friends at the beach.  I was planning to drop her off, but after having to take the Keaukaha detour, I decided I could just hang.  It wasn't an especially hot day either, so waiting in the car with the windows down was not a problem at all.  I spent my time looking at one of my cookbooks.  The Help was romanced by a KFC commercial he saw while watching football, so we had a whole barrel of extra crispy chicken tenders to eat.  NO Sansei!!!

I don't think I'll even get to go next weekend, so I'm not sure when the next window of opportunity will happen, but I'd love to post more pics of other favorites.  I love the shrimp dynamite, Alaskan flower sushi, and crispy shrimp cake.  Next time.  Sigh.

I am soooo looking forward to all the holidays this month.  I haven't been asked to host a Thanksgiving party yet, and I'm hoping I escape.  Last year, I was under the weather, and The Help ordered one of those packaged Thanksgiving dinners from Sack N Save, which was delicious.  I'm trying to decide if we should go with a packaged dinner again this year.  I was told Safeway has a good meal (a little pricier than Sack N Save), and they were sold out when The Help tried to place an order last year.

Before I end my post for this week, I'd like to thank God for keeping my pals Maggie (New York) and Joe (Virginia) safe this past week when superstorm Sandy ravaged the East Coast.  I'd also like to give thanks for sparing Hawaii from a devastating tsunami.  In spite of all my bitching and rants, I do have a lot for which to be thankful.


  1. Thanks for the review. We will be in Hawaii in January, and now I definitely want to visit this place.