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Food & Dining // Table Talk
Jo McGarry

Wolfing Down Breakfast In Waikiki

Anyone who has eaten at Wolfgang’s Steakhouse or Il Lupino knows that both Waikiki restaurants (owned and operated by father and son Wolfgang and Peter Zwiener) offer a high level of service and style. Wolfgang’s has a menu that offers in-house dry-aged steaks, a seafood tower to rival any in town – and bacon. But not just any bacon. Bacon that started a trend in Hawaii for bacon. Bacon that was served as an appetizer before anybody had even really thought about eating bacon without eggs. And bacon that happily now is served downstairs at Il Lupino for breakfast.

“It’s a thinner cut of the same bacon,” says Il Lupino executive chef James Donahue. “People love the thick cut that we offer in the steakhouse, but a lot of our guests love the thin cut we serve at breakfast even more.” And the house-cured slabs are part of a breakfast menu at Il Lupino that gets just about everything right.

Weekday offerings start at 7 a.m. and include excellent Scottish Smoked Salmon ($17) and moist, fluffy French Brioche Toast ($14) that comes piled high with fresh blueberries, strawberries and other seasonal berries. My plate of brioche, dusted with powdered sugar and topped with berries, drew enthusiastic gasps from almost everyone passing by on their way to and from Sheraton Waikiki and Royal Hawaiian.

The house special Loco Moco ($10), with its generous serving of beef patty, rice, eggs and a steak-house-worthy gravy is certain to carry most people right through lunch.

Fresh fruit, that wonderful bacon with eggs, omelets, a selection of Eggs Benedict ($16) and cereals round off the breakfast offerings, unless you want to add a glass of champagne offered daily by the glass and as part of the restaurant’s weekend brunch special.

And borrowing another tradition from Wolfgang’s Steakhouse, guests soon will be greeted by a basket of freshly made muffins as they sit and peruse the menu.

“Guests love the fresh muffins that we bring to the table as part of our brunch at Wolfgang’s,” says James, “so it only made sense to offer them at Il Lupino, too.”

So look forward to a basket of fresh, house-baked muffins coming to your breakfast table soon.

Free muffins, champagne brunch and some of the best bacon in town make Il Lupino a serious contender for breakfast, whether you want to impress a business client or just meet friends for a morning in Waikiki. There’s ample parking, cool indoor seating, a sunny lanai shaded with giant umbrellas – all a world away from the usual Waikiki tourist experience.

And did I mention it has great bacon?

Happy eating!

Il Lupino Royal Hawaiian Center Building B Level 1 www.illupino.com

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