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Bernini Honolulu

1218 Waimanu St. (Piikoi St.) Send to Phone
808-591-8400
Italian cuisine, from pizzas to pastas, from chef Kengo Matsumoto.
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Local Deals: 120 * 90

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Open
Dinner Tues.-Sun.
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Bernini Honolulu Restaurant Review

: Chef Kengo Matsumoto took his culinary training in Northern Italy, subsequently opening his first restaurant, Bernini, in Tokyo. Bernini Honolulu is similar to the original, with a more formal dining room and service, and a menu featuring locally grown, seasonal produce as much as possible. While the freddi (cold) appetizers are first-rate, we liked the grilled scallops with eggplant in a balsamic reduction from the cardi (warm) list, and the bagna cauda, a simple dish of warm fresh vegetables in a delicate garlic sauce. There is an homage to a classic Japanese ingredient in the ricci di mare pasta, which pairs the unctuous texture and richness of fresh sea urchin roe with the bite of peperoncino. Pizzas are available in both rossa (red) and bianca (white) varieties. Dominated by pastas, the menu also takes in steaks, seafood and chicken as secondi. A Japanese influence is felt in the classic Italian desserts of tiramisu, panna cotta and buddino, which are lighter and less sweet than we usually encounter. The wine list is appropriately Italian with offerings from California and France. Service was unobtrusive yet attentive.

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