Saturday, January 12, 2008

The Contemporary Cafe

My mom wanted to have a mother-daughter lunch before my sister went back to San Francisco for college and The Contemporary Cafe turned out to be the perfect place! After our attempt to have a girly lunch at The Wedding Cafe (which happened to be having a private party that day) I remembered hearing about the cafe at the Contemporary Museum. So my mom, sister, and I got dressed up all girly, and headed up to Makiki heights to enjoy a lunch together!

The museum is located in a very serene location surrounded by trees and flora. The cafe itself is rather small, with options for sitting both inside and outside. Inside, the room is decorated with paintings that change often. This time, it was colorful paintings of flowers. Each table has its own personality, with different salt and pepper shakers on each table. Our table had a set that resembled light bulbs! Service at the cafe was rather slow (there was only two waitresses for the place); however it allowed time for us girls to sit and talk.

We started off with the pita and hummus appetizer ($6). It included warm pita bread, hummus, cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions, feta cheese and kalamata olives. The hummus had a strong garlic flavor, that was a little over powering on its own; however, when eaten with the assorted vegetables and cheeses, it wasn't so bad.

For lunch, my sister had the Turkey Namasu Sandwich ($10.50), which was unique combination of turkey, namasu (japanese pickled vegetables), cilantro, and tomato, all served on the house made focaccia bread. I thought that it was a neat twist on having sauerkraut in a sandwich. The sandwich turned out to be delicious, and my sister enjoyed it.

My mom ordered the Grilled Vegetable Sandwich ($10.50), which was a combination of grilled eggplant, zucchini, and portobello mushrooms served with sundried tomatoes, pesto and melted provolone cheese. This sandwich was also served on the house made foccacia bread. This sandwich was also delicious!

I decided to have the Soba Noodle Salad ($10.25). This salad included a beautiful arrangement of cold soba noodles, tofu, watercress, tomatoes, and cucumbers. The salad was topped off with a garlic-shoyu dressing, which I thought was way to overpowering, with a very strong, salty shoyu flavor. The dressing was a bit too strong for the delicate ingredients of the salad.

And how could we end a "girls-day-out" lunch without dessert? We ordered the dessert of the day, which was a BiShau, a chocolate chip cake with whipped cream.

All in all, the peaceful surroundings and beautiful art provided a laid-back atmosphere for a perfect mother-daughter lunch. Be sure to make reservations if you want to go, because seating fills up fast!

The Contemporary Cafe
(At the Contemporary Museum)
2411 Makiki Heights Drive
Honolulu, HI 96822

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