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  5. Kapaa
Aina Kauai Restaurant, Kapaa, HI

Aina Kauai Restaurant

5.0
5
382 Reviews
$50 and over
Japanese Speciality
Located in the heart of Kapa‘a town, ‘Āina Kaua‘i offers creative and delicious Japanese cuisine that highlights the flavors and bounty of Kaua’i. The menu features ingredients harvested at peak freshness from local farms for use in refined Japanese cooking techniques that transform a meal into a transcendent dining journey. The open kitchen allows guests to observe the preparation of courses, while the choice “Chef’s Counter” features four exclusive seats where guests can interact with the chefs throughout their meal. Guests can select libations from a drink menu which includes premium sake, Japanese beer, wine, and cocktails made from scratch with local fruits, spirits from Hanalei Spirits, and Japanese whisky. OpenTable’s Top Diners’ Choice Winner – rated #1 on Kaua’i.

Dietary restrictions must be confirmed by email (eat@ainakauai.com) *before* making a reservation.

No refunds, changes, or cancellations.

Make a booking

2 people

7:00 pm


Experiences are available.

Additional information

  • Dining style
    Casual Elegant
  • Price
    $50 and over
  • Cuisines
    Japanese Speciality, Creative Japanese, Farm-to-table
  • Hours of Operation
    Dinner Thu–Sun 5:00 pm–9:00 pm
  • Phone number
    (808) 698-6449
  • Payment Options
    AMEX, Mastercard, Visa
  • Dress Code
    Smart Casual
  • Private party facilities
    Please contact us at eat@ainakauai.com to reserve for a private event.
  • Area
    Kapaa
  • Parking Details
    Street Parking
  • Additional
    Beer, Chef's Table, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Non-Smoking, Wheelchair Access, Wine

Experiences

  • Kauaian Kaiseki Tasting Menu

    USD 149.00 per person

    Prepaid

    Multiple dates available
    We offer a multi-course tasting menu that infuses the Japanese art form of kaiseki with the flavors and traditions of Kaua‘i to create an authentic expression of time and place that we call Kauaian Kaiseki. Our ingredients are harvested at peak freshness, and our cooking techniques emphasize the flavors of the island. Sample menu at www.ainakauai.com. *** No refunds, changes, or cancellations regardless of reason. *** *** Dietary restrictions must be confirmed by email before booking. *** Additional charge for drinks ordered. 20% service charge will be used to pay for costs or expenses other than wages and tips of employees. 2% processing fee will be used to offset reservation processing fees.
    Kauaian Kaiseki Tasting Menu photo

What 382 people are saying

Overall ratings and reviews

Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant

5.0
5 based on recent ratings
  • 5Food
  • 4.8Service
  • 4.8Ambience
  • 4.5Value

NoiseModerate

Loved For

  • Hawaii

    Best Overall

  • Hawaii

    Best Food

  • Hawaii

    Best Service

  • Hawaii

    Best Value

  • Hawaii

    Innovative

  • Hawaii

    Good for special occasions

  • Kauai

    Best Overall

  • Kauai

    Best Food

  • Kauai

    Best Service

  • Kauai

    Best Ambience

  • Kauai

    Best Value

  • Kauai

    Innovative

  • Kauai

    Good for special occasions

382 Reviews
  1. OpenTable Diner

    Chicago

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 5 January 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Worth the drive from Poipu to enjoy a truly authentic and creative dinner. Every course stood out for being not just interesting but also incredibly delicious. Would definitely recommend dining here no matter where you are staying on Kauai!

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  2. WearaMask

    Dallas

    8 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    8 reviews

    Dined on 5 January 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great hyper fresh tasting menu - highly recommend taking a night to try these nibe courses

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  3. OpenTable Diner

    Los Angeles

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 1 January 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We were enticed by the prospect of a "dining experience," and they delivered beyond expectations. The staff was extremely attentive, and no detail escaped them. The cuisine was exquisite, and the presentation was impeccable. They are true masters of their craft. If you have the good fortune to be in Kauai, this is truly an experience worth having.

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  4. AngelaM

    Denver

    1 review

    vip
    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 1 January 2024

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We have an exceptional meal at Aina on New Years Eve! The service, the meal and the beverages were all thoughtfully planned and executed!! Cedar makes an excellent cocktail and each course was better than the last. I would highly recommend Aina to anyone visiting Kauai.

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  5. TylerW

    Charlotte

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 29 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Best food we had in Kauai! It was a small setting and the staff was fantastic as well. We really enjoyed meeting them and being able to experience their craft. My wife had an excellent cocktail and limited reserve saki and I had a fantastic mocktail. Their wine pairings per dish are clearly laid out as well if that is your preference. Next time we are back in Kauai we will definitely return and we recommend them without hesitation.

    Is this helpful?

  6. LisaB

    San Francisco

    14 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    14 reviews

    Dined on 24 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    This was a very special dining experience. The 8 course meal was so beautifully presented and the flavors were a tropical adventure. Just go there! I emailed the restaurant in advance of our dietary needs (1 pescatarian and 1 gluten free). Very important. He and staff accommodated us seamlessly. The staff who greeted us and introduced each course were great. I’ve eaten at lovely restaurants before, but this meal transported me. Get there early, carpool if you can, take your seat, order a drink and watch what happens.

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  7. Evie

    New York City

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on 23 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Incredible from start to finish. Lovely interior, great music, excellent selection of interesting cocktails. The tasting menu is wonderful. Fantastic selection of hyper local ingredients, and it's clear that a lot of thought goes into each dish. Service was impeccable, timing was great, just overall a fantastic experience and hope we get to do it again sometime!

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  8. OpenTable Diner

    Detroit

    1 review

    vip
    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 22 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Unforgettable dining experience! One of the best meals of our lives. Very kind staff and food was out-of-this-world.

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  9. miyekom

    Greater Boston

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 17 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We thoroughly enjoyed our experience at Aina Kauai. We appreciate the farm to table experience coupled with creativity in flavor and texture combinations. I enthusiastically recommend to this restaurant to friends and family.

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  10. Skmo92

    Hawaii

    24 reviews

    5.0

    24 reviews

    Dined on 16 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    This was the second time that I had been to this establishment, and each time has been a great experience. The food and the service have been awesome.

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  11. JimW

    Los Angeles

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 15 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Absolutely superb! 7 course meal which was amazing. Mitch (the owner) was hands on overseeing everything while also preparing drinks and actually serving each portion while offering explanatory descriptions. We sat at the chef's table watching much of the preparation. Cannot say enough about the staff who were incredibly efficient and friendly. All in all a FANTASTIC dinner experience. Thank you Mitch, Jabez et al.

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  12. MauiGirl808

    San Francisco

    6 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on 10 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We come to Kawae from Maui once a year for a few days R&R and to go to this wonderful restaurant. It is expensive, but not for what you get. The food is such high-quality and so fresh and while the portions are small and beautifully presented overall it is a very filling meal. If you love Japanese food, I would highly suggest that you try this restaurant because their local touch is quite special. Also have beers and sake not readily available in other restaurants. 

    1 person found this helpful

  13. laurie

    Chicago

    39 reviews

    4.0

    39 reviews

    Dined on 9 December 2023

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 3
    The food and service was fantastic. But the evening was less than stellar as there was a group of 8 people at one table that were so loud that we could not even hear the waiter explain what each course was. This went on for the full 2.5 hours of the meal. The couple next to us commented that it was the loudest Japanese meal they had ever had. Based on the acoustics and the fact that the staff let this go on for the entire meal, I would not return. If it were not for that, I would have given this restaurant a 5.

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  14. OpenTable Diner

    Charleston

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 9 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Go hungry it’s a ton of food but all delicious. Would go again.

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  15. OpenTable Diner

    San Francisco

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 4 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Phenomenal food and experience, great team in the kitchen. Mitch, Cedar and Jabez made us all feel at home and introduced us to a world of local ingredients and cuisine we hadn't ever seen before. 12/10 will be back when we next return to Kauai.

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  16. OpenTable Diner

    Los Angeles

    3 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on 4 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great place to eat I would eat there again and the staff was great. I could totally see it getting Michelin star or stars in its future.

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  17. OpenTable Diner

    Hawaii

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 2 December 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Beautiful and memorable dining experience. Every course was thoughtfully executed and delicious to eat. Don’t miss the sake flight pairing as it is worth the splurge! Server / owner was a pleasure to talk to. Will be returning for sure.

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  18. OpenTable Diner

    Hawaii

    2 reviews

    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 26 November 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Food and service outstanding. We recommend this restaurant to all, even our 11 year old granddaughter loved the experience and food! Will definitely come again when we visit Kauai!

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  19. OpenTable Diner

    Greater Boston

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 26 November 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Extraordinarily beautiful and delicious courses, fulfilling and enticing, would definitely recommend this as a must eat at Kauai.

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  20. Crow1

    Los Angeles

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 25 November 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    A gem on Kauai - worth the drive! This tasting menu was beautifully executed.

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  21. EmilyD

    San Francisco

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 24 November 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Amazing food and service!! Would totally come back again!

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  22. RuthM

    Hawaii

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on 28 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    A most refined, innovative culinary experience! Way to go, Mitch!

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  23. williamt

    New York City

    4 reviews

    vip
    4.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on 27 October 2023

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Very good service. Food was decent but a bit overrated.

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  24. OpenTable Diner

    New York City

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 27 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Incredible experience. Great value for what is offered.

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  25. CherylS

    Seattle

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 22 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Had a wonderful experience tasting a variety of beautifully plated food. Everything tasted so delicious.

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  26. mirgast

    Los Angeles

    13 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    13 reviews

    Dined on 22 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Can’t recommend this restaurant highly enough. It never fails to impress. Every ingredient is fresh and flavorful and the preparations are outstanding. This level of perfectionism is extremely hard to find at restaurants in major foodie cities on the mainland, and even more mind blowing on this little island. Some of the most ‘simple’ things — a salad or a bowl of dashi — become things of wonder here. So much better quality and value than the expensive resort restaurants on the island. Already looking forward to our next visit!

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  27. SACO

    Hawaii

    4 reviews

    5.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on 22 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    An incredible eating experience! We had a 9-course meal that was phenomenal on every level. Our server, Cedar, who presented the food, also described what was on each plate. Each plate looked like a "still life" painting with beautifully arranged ingredients. We enjoyed all the flavors and textures of each dish. Chef Jebez is a fantastic talent! Even though the price seemed high at 1st, after eating the food, we felt it was well worth it. The 3 of us highly recommend this fabulous restaurant, and we plan to return whenever we are on the island.

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  28. jackm

    Hawaii

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 21 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Great food and drinks. I recommend the Kama'aina drink. Good sized portions, you won't leave hungry. The waitress and chef were relaxed and informative. I'd definitely come back

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  29. PaulaL

    Hawaii

    1 review

    5.0

    1 review

    Dined on 21 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Amazing experience and the food were so so good !!

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  30. OpenTable Diner

    Hawaii

    9 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    9 reviews

    Dined on 21 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Our waitress, Candice, was very charming and friendly. Food was very good. We 3 loved it very much. We loved everything on the menu and were so stuffed. Thank you Mitch and Candice.

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  31. BobB

    Washington DC

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on 20 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Best meal in Hawaii bar none. Definitely worth the price. Fabulous food, fantastic and knowledgeable service. Great ingredients and flavors (I.e. steak robata, sashimi course and pandan ice cream). Only note is that starting with course 6 of 9 they could cut back on the amount of food - it was a lot.

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  32. OpenTable Diner

    San Diego

    4 reviews

    3.0

    4 reviews

    Dined on 8 October 2023

    1. Overall 3
    2. Food 3
    3. Service 3
    4. Ambience 2
    Not impressed. Had the highest expectations. The setting - an industrial building with sterilized decorations and awkward ambience. Requested the chefs bar where only one couple was seated, they said no. The next couple after us was offered it and they declined. We asked again and we were re-sat (so, plus a star). Waited thirty minutes for our first drink. The place only had six couples it was odd how slow the service was. I think it’s because our server was the sole bartender also. Food - good, but not at all the level I was expecting for the hype or price. Delicate, pretty, portions with articulately placed edible flowers did not mask the over cooked Opah or underseasoned rice dish made in a rice cooker I heard chime before serving. A few standout dishes - the ono fish cake was to die for, the dashi course was superb. Dessert was delicious. Ridiculously overpriced cocktails but in fairness they were delicious. This place missed the mark for us; will not come back nor would I recommend for the price.

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  33. AdrienneS

    San Francisco

    7 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on 8 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Exceptional meal -9 courses-10/10. Drinks amazing too

    1 person found this helpful

  34. Toree

    San Francisco

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on 7 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    We had the pleasure of experiencing Aina Kauai's kaiseki last night after our fellow foodie friends from the mainland recommend it, and I'm so glad they did. Choosing to sit at the chef's table bar was something I do not regret as it was really fun to watch them prepare everything both behind the curtain and right in front of us. The staff and chef peppered in conversation about what they were doing, ingredients, and plating. It was wonderful!! Now... onto the food. Mercy - was it all so delectable! The first course of shave ice was such a fun and unique way to start the meal. The guava vinaigrette and Star fruit on the salad were stellar. Every course was sinful, but the standouts for me we're the sashimi (SO fresh and flavorful) and the sakana course - fresh caught fish charred and served with an ube miso sauce. INCREDIBLE. Everything was so unique and the ice cream was my favorite part of dessert - a perfect ending to a phenomenal dining experience. We loved our server (I think he may have been the owner?) and the conversation we were able to have with him before, throughout, and after the meal. It really did make for such a perfect evening. If ever you find yourself on Kauai, do yourself a favor and secure a reservation here. You'll regret nothing and you'll come away thrilled and very full! Bravo, Aina Kauai - we will be singing your praises to anyone who will listen back in California.

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  35. BenM

    Cincinnati

    5 reviews

    5.0

    5 reviews

    Dined on 7 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Outstanding experience all around! Each course was a unique expression of Hawaiian cuisine with a strong focus on farm to table. The drink pairings were also thoughtfully curated, including cocktails, sake, and wine. On top of the food and drinks, the staff was attentive and informative, sharing insight on each dish. Even if you're staying on other parts of the island, it is worth the drive as this is far above typical resort fare.

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  36. DaveB

    San Francisco

    17 reviews

    4.0

    17 reviews

    Dined on 7 October 2023

    1. Overall 4
    2. Food 4
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Definitely a different experience well guided by our serve, Candice. Food was good to great presentation was well detailed. A definite must try!

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  37. JanB

    Caribbean

    7 reviews

    5.0

    7 reviews

    Dined on 6 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    If you like Japanese Kaiseki style meals with a fixed menu and every dish in this 10 course meal is delicious and a work of art, look no further than Aina Kauai! Aina is the best meal on Kauai and rivals some three star Michelin restaurants we have eaten at around the globe. Mitch, the owner, prepares his meals using locally sourced farm fresh meats and produce. The sauces are incredible. The combinations of sweet and sour are heavenly. This is a two hour culinary extravaganza that should not be missed for food lovers. The price of approximately $200 per person including a 22 percent gratuity and all taxes, is steep but not for the quality of the meal and service. Drinks are extra.

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  38. deeptir

    Alabama

    2 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    2 reviews

    Dined on 2 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    Needs a Michelin star already! Great tasting menu, innovative flavors and incredible presentation

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  39. KevinO

    San Diego

    6 reviews

    vip
    5.0

    6 reviews

    Dined on 2 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 4
    Amazing food. Quite possibly the best I have had on Kauai.

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  40. MarkD

    San Francisco

    3 reviews

    5.0

    3 reviews

    Dined on 2 October 2023

    1. Overall 5
    2. Food 5
    3. Service 5
    4. Ambience 5
    One of a kind culinary experience. Too many amazing flavours to comment about. Probably the best fish I have ever had. Note: You should go hungry. It is a lot of food.

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FAQs

Aina Kauai Restaurant is rated 5 stars by 382 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable.

Make a booking

2 people

7:00 pm


Experiences are available.
Google Map for Aina Kauai Restaurant

4-985 Kuhio Hwy, Kapaa, HI 96746-1551

Additional information

  • Area
    Kapaa
  • Hours of Operation
    Dinner Thu–Sun 5:00 pm–9:00 pm
  • Price
    $50 and over
  • Cuisines
    Japanese Speciality, Creative Japanese, Farm-to-table
  • Dining style
    Casual Elegant
  • Dress Code
    Smart Casual
  • Parking Details
    Street Parking
  • Payment Options
    AMEX, Mastercard, Visa
  • Additional
    Beer, Chef's Table, Cocktails, Corkage Fee, Counter Seating, Non-Smoking, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Phone number
    (808) 698-6449
  • Private party facilities
    Please contact us at eat@ainakauai.com to reserve for a private event.
  • Privacy policy
  • Terms of Use
  • Cookies and Interest-Based Ads
  • Cookie Preferences
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