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“This izakaya will not disappoint”

Imanas TEI Restaurant
Ranked #337 of 2,403 Restaurants in Honolulu
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Honolulu, Hawaii
Level 4 Contributor
25 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
“This izakaya will not disappoint”
Reviewed 4 January 2012

This is a very popular Japanese restaurant, totally worth going to if you like Japanese food. It gets really crowded, so don't be surprised if you have to wait. I don't think they take reservations either.
It would be best to go with friends, as they have an awesome "nabe" (Japanese food cooked in a large pot on the table). Super fun to pick at it with your chopsticks with friends. Their sushi is also top notch. Fresh and tasty. I happen to love their egg sushi "tamago". Something about it beats all other restaurants that serve tamago sushi. I've also been impressed by the specials that they have. It seems they put in extra effort to make these good. The last one I had was fried "aji" (some sort of small fish) fried with some sort of horseradish sauce. Yum. They also have all sorts of Japanese alcohol to go with your food!

Visited December 2011
Helpful?
Thank Kentinhawaii
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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73 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Honolulu, Hawaii
Level 5 Contributor
40 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“The BEST Izakaya Restaurant!”
Reviewed 31 October 2011

If you love Japanese food....I mean really consistently high quality Japanese food, you gotta go to Imana Tei. Hidden behind the 7-11 gas station in Moiliili, this fabulous restaurant is a hidden jewel.
We have been going there for years now and have NEVER, NEVER had a bad meal! Can't say that for most places.
My personal favorites....toro, garlic clams, garlic steak, agedashi tofu, grilled miso butterfish, dynamite, soft shell crab and finish up with the crab rice soup...don't need any rice....the Chanko Nabe is great, but it is a meal by itself. Just tried the vinegar oysters this past Saturday and will add that to our regular order....
Sometimes I don't like sharing my favorites because then it gets harder to get in there, but this is really a gem that deserves recognition!
Reservations taken only up to 7pm.

  • Visited October 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank love2gonow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
2 reviews
“I have never been to a japanese restaurant where I was so stuffed with sashimi, for the price that I've paid.”
Reviewed 20 October 2011

I live in NYC and this restaurant would be one of my reasons to go back to Honolulu. I can't believe how great the food was and variety of sushi they had. It's hands down the best I've had in Hawaii.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Rebecca510
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Jose, California
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Worth the wait!”
Reviewed 20 September 2011

We asked a bellman at our hotel where we could get great sushi. He told us the name of the place, but I couldn't find it on Yelp. He then ran inside to the concierge to find out how to spell the same and returned with a map and directions to Imanas. We didn't go that night because after reading the Yelp reviews, we were worried we'd have to wait too long, as it was after 7:00 pm. Fast forward a couple days later when we see the same bellman and he asks if we've tried Imanas yet. I said no, but we'd try it before we left the island. We drive off and I tell my husband, "I'm on a mission! We are going to Imanas no matter how hard it is to park or how long we have to wait". We made it and were sooooo glad we did!

The parking wasn't so bad. We went on a Saturday night and got there about 6:30 pm. I parked in the lot next door and we walked over. That lot is only $1.50/hr and has 2 levels. (I won't bore you with the embarrassing story of how we went into Kohnotori next door and realized we were not at Imanas -- DOH!) We only had to wait about 15 minutes and they sat us at a communal table that had a fun bunch of older locals and we loved it. The staff were friendly and accommodating. When on vacation, we eat a big breakfast and a big dinner with nothing in between, so it was nice they didn't judge us for ordering several times. Our fave local sushi place makes you feel like an oinker if you order more than they think you should. NOYB is what I feel like saying. Hmph.

The food was amazing! We had several kinds of fried chicken, multiple kinds of sushi, fried teri pepper chicken, agedashi tofu, and a few other dishes. We ordered 10 things plus 3 large Asahi beers and the whole bill was $90, which I thought was very reasonable. We walked out of there full and happy, but sad that we wouldn't be coming back before we left. Don't be scared by reviews that talk about the negatives of parking or waiting, cos Imanas is worth it!

  • Visited June 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Frances G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“I'm a regular here for a reason!”
Reviewed 28 July 2011

Located on University ave right behind 7-11. Huge orange sign, you can't miss it. Parking lot is small, but you can pay for parking right next door at pucks alley.

The best things here are the sushi and chanko nabe. The sushi is so fresh, you can't get it this good anywhere else in Hawaii. I love the hamachi and unagi. The spicy tuna roll chopped is also a nice starter. My bf loves the amaebi, they also serve the deep fried heads after (tastes like shrimp chips, yum!)

The chanko nabe is prepared for you, I love the presentation. It's $20 per person (you have to order 2), and it comes with crab, shrimp, shabu beef, chicken, scallop, mochi, veg.. Omg. Then when you're done, you choose noodles or rice. Choose the rice, you will not be disappointed. When you thought it was over, they add the rice to the remaining soup (they usually add more soup), add some egg then sprinkle on the nori. It's sooo good. I had the noodles before, but the rice is way better.

Other honorable mentions are the butter clams, garlic steak (the potato salad is awesome), katsu skewers with miso sauce, and DYNAMITE. Yum yum all the way!

My only drawback is the service. It's really hit or miss. As regulars, they know us there.. We were seated in the back room (private area where you take off your shoes, bigger table and better lighting) and had the worst service ever. I was really disappointed. I hate being forgotten and not even checked on!! The food is still really good, they just need to up their service.

    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank joyhawaii
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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