Where to Find the Best Dinner on Kauai

You’ve spent the day exploring the beauty of the Garden Isle and there’s one last thing to do before calling it a day — eat a delicious dinner. We’ve hand-collected a list of the best places to enjoy a lovely meal on Kauai.

But wait, there’s more. We’re here to help demystify some of the unusual words you might see on menus like furikake, laulau and lilikoi — and explain which meat is being served and why. And possibly most importantly of all, provide the fun facts on the origins of local dishes

If you’re happy with your meal, tag us @HawaiiIslander on Instagram to share the love.

Feature Photo: Eating House 1849 Facebook


Kauai Dinner Map

Ama dinner Hanalei Kauai Hawaii
Photo: @amahanalei


Ama’s motto is “you’re in paradise, try the noodles” and we heartily agree! They use only local ingredients for their delicious house-made noodles and ramen mazeman dishes. Enjoy your meal on their gorgeous patio. Ama’s sister restaurant is Bar Acuda, also in Hanalei. Ama is open  Tuesday to Saturday 5pm to 9pm. 

Bar Acuda
Photo: @baracudahanalei

Bar Acuda

For 15 years, Bar Acuda has been offering an amazing tapas-style menu designed to be shared among friends — but there’s no shame in ordering to your heart’s content if dining solo. The ingredients are locally sourced, the wine list is extensive and the creative cocktails set the tone for one great meal on Kauai’s north shore. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 5:30pm to 9:30pm. Closed Sunday and Monday. 

Eating House 1849
Photo: @eainghouse1849poipu

Eating House 1849

Well-renowned local chef Roy Yamaguchi is behind Eating House 1849. The menu features dishes both from mauka (the mountains) and makai (the sea). Start with your own appetizer, the Kamuela Farms Tomato & Mozzarella Cheese Salad, and then share an delicious entree like the Slow Braised Honey Mustard Grilled Beef Short Ribs or the Tiger Shrimp Pasta. Open Tuesday through Saturday 5pm to 9pm. 

Photo: @hukilau_kauai

Hukilau Lanai

Hukilau Lanai sources only sustainably caught fish and is part of The Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch. The views here are great, and everything is made on site from scratch. There are several gluten-free options on the menu, and every night there’s a five-course tasting menu for $65, offered from 5-5:45pm. Reservations are recommended. Open Tuesday through Saturday 5pm to 9pm. Closed Sunday and Monday.

Jo2 dinner Kapaa Kauai Hawaii
Photo: @jo2restaurant

Jo2 Natural Cuisine

Chef Jean-Marie Josselin has created a menu that merges the culinary influences of his native France, the clean flavors of Japanese cooking, and Hawaii’s multi-ethnic community. Jo2 focuses on using local organic produce and freshly caught fish. Our recommended dishes include ono ceviche with coconut water foam, tempura lobster tail ramen, and sake cured steelhead salmon. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 5pm to 9pm.

Red Salt dinner Koloa Kauai Hawaii
Photo: @redsaltrestaurant

Red Salt

Kauai native and award-winning chef Noelani Planas is in the kitchen of Red Salt, located inside the Koa Kea Hotel & Resort in Poipu. Voted #1 Restaurant in Kauai by Honolulu Magazine, Red Salt offers delectable dishes like Madagascar Vanilla Bean Seared Mahi Mahi. Open daily from 7am to 11am and 530pm to 8:30pm.

The Dolphin Poipu
Photo: @thedolphinpoipu

The Dolphin

Family-owned and -operated for over 20 years, this place is serving seriously “ono-licious” (really tasty) food. The vibe is hip, the fish is as fresh as it gets, and the menu has got something for everyone, including all you plant-loving folk. The Dolphin is open daily from 5pm to 8pm.

Merrimans dinner Koloa Kauai Hawaii
Photo: @merrimansmaui


Chef Peter Merriman has made quite a name for himself in Hawaii, and his namesake restaurant sources ingredients locally, in order to get the freshest from local farmers, fisherman and ranchers. The cocktails are flowing and the local beers are in abundance. Of course, the food is nothing short of delicious. Merriman’s is open daily from 4pm to 9pm. Located at the Shops at Kukuiula with beautiful views of Kauai’s sunsets. Advanced reservations are highly recommended through opentable.com.

Did we miss your favorite restaurant? 
Our always-hungry team of foodies have compiled this list.
Please let us know if we’ve missed your favorite eat@localgetaways.com.

Kauai Dinner Map

Clean Plate Club

Clean Plate Club

The job of delivering the best possible content for our restaurant recommendations can not be left to one person. Click here to meet the team behind the Bay Area Clean Plate Club.

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