Il Lupino Trattoria & Wine Bar

My SO and I like to go to the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center to dine. We usually eat at the Cheesecake Factory, PF Chang’s, Wolfgang’s Steak House or Doraku. I’ve wanted to try Il Lupino for awhile but didn’t get a chance until today.

We drove to the Shopping Center and parked on the 9th floor which is the highest floor we’ve ever parked. The shopping center was the busiest ever.

After parking the car, we walked to the restaurant. The outside seating was full but we were hoping we could eat in the restaurant without a reservation. That wasn’t a problem. Wow, the restaurant is huge inside with lots of seating.

We shared the calamari fritti ($12). My SO ordered the bolognese with tagliatelle ($17)’and I ordered the lobster croissant ($18). After we ordered our food, the server brought fresh warm bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar to our table. It took awhile for the calamari. It was almost as if  they forgot our order. Our server came to our table after noticing that we did not have our order and told us that the calamari was just dropped. The calamari was tender and not rubbery.

The tagliatelle was cooked ala dente and the sauce mild and delicate . The lobster sandwich was full of sweet lobster. Both entrees were very tasty. The serving size of the pasta was sufficient. The sandwith was more than I could finish and came with a choice of salad or truffle fries.

We sat by the kitchen and I saw a lot of meatballs and pizza going out. Would like to try the loco moco ($16) next time.

Keep in mind that Il Lupino is not inexpensive. Our lunch was more than $75 with tax and tip. Reviews of Il Lupino are mixed. The original chef passed away but the food when we went was quite good. If money is an object, happy hour from 4 – 6:30 p.m. is an option.

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