Leeward and Kapiʻolani Culinary Programs HonoredLeeward Community College
Dir of Mktg, Chancellor's Office
Chosen by Honolulu Star-Advertiser dining and food writers.
The ‘Ilima Awards pay tribute to the ambitions of Hawaiʻi’s chefs-in-training and the dedication of their teachers with a perpetual “Rising Stars” award to the student-run restaurants at Kapiʻolani and Leeward community colleges. These restaurants are the training grounds for the next generation of local chefs and restaurant managers. They are practice labs, yes, but both offer professional dining experiences — sophisticated meals at very reasonable prices.
A bonus: The two restaurants showcase enviable views of Oʻahu. Ka ʻIkena Lauaʻe offers a view of the ocean from on high; the Pearl overlooks the battleships of Pearl Harbor and also offers a view of Diamond Head. And both restaurants are BYOB, with no corkage fee.
At Leeward Community College, 98-045 Ala Ike St., Pearl City www.leeward.hawaii.edu/thepearl
This is Leeward's fourth year being recognized in the ʻIlima Awards. Open Wednesdays through Fridays for lunch. Entree prices are $16 and under. Menu changes every two weeks. A Thanksgiving buffet Nov. 19-21 is $25. Also, occasional special dinner menus are featured: A Nov. 7 dinner pairs students with guest chef Ronnie Nasuti of Tiki’s Grill & Bar ($70; $85 with wine pairings).
At Kapiʻolani Community College, 4303 Diamond Head Road, ‘Ohelo Building culinary.kapiolani.hawaii.edu
Open for lunch and dinner Tuesdays to Fridays. Meals are prix fixe, under $25 for three courses at lunch; $32 and under for four courses at dinner. Focus is on a continental menu at lunch, changing weekly; Asian at dinner, changing every few weeks.
Reservations: 734-9499 until 4:30 p.m.; 734-9488 from 4:30 to 8 p.m., or www.opentable.com.