Saturday, June 18, 2011

Boots & Kimo's

Boots & Kimo's Homestyle Kitchen (Kailua, HI) serves traditional breakfast and lunch items. They are probably best known for their signature macadamia nut sauce, used for their pancakes.

Breakfast menu (omelets)
Breakfast menu (pancakes, a la carte items, beverages)
My father and I arrived at Boots & Kimo's promptly at 7:30 a.m. (opening time) on a Thursday. I had heard great comments about this place, and not surprisingly, there were at least 25-30 people waiting for the place to open. Despite the vast numbers of people, we still managed to get a table right away.

My dad and I each got a cup of Kona coffee (regular for my dad, decaf for me; $2.89 each). We then split a short stack of banana macadamia pancakes, which are basically two banana pancakes with the famous macadamia nut sauce ($7.99). We asked for the sauce on the side because I had seen the pictures of how Boots & Kimo's completely douses the pancakes with the sauce. We also ordered a side of sugar-cured bacon ($5.75).

Decaf coffee...I always drink my coffee black
Wait a sec...$5.75 for four tiny strips of crispy bacon? WTF?
Banana pancakes
The famous macadamia nut sauce!
The place had a bright decor and was absolutely packed. I didn't necessarily care for the abundance of football-related items all over the walls because it made it look more like an upscale sports bar instead of a "homestyle kitchen." It was also very loud in there. Boots & Kimo's seems to attract tourists and younger clientele. I saw a few Japanese tourists seated near us, also taking pictures of the food.

The coffee was average and ridiculously overpriced. At least you get free refills, but man, I felt compelled to drink more than one cup of coffee just to make that purchase worth it just a bit more. My dad and I agreed that there should have been different cups for regular coffee and decaf coffee (a server nearly refilled my cup with regular coffee, which would have kept me up for a zillion hours had I drank that).

The bacon was cooked how my father and I like it: crispy and not too oily. But again, at $5.75, I wanted a bed of that bacon instead of four small pieces.

The pancakes were light and delicious. I liked the texture of the mashed bananas in the pancakes. Those bananas made the pancakes a bit moister as well. The macadamia nut sauce lived up to the hype. The sauce was very sweet, and the minced macadamia nuts brought a nice texture contrast. No syrup needed here, folks. I'm very happy we got the sauce on the side because, as good as the sauce is, it would have been complete sugar overkill to douse the pancakes in that (and I wouldn't have wanted to finish it all if so). Just take a look at the photos on websites like Yelp, and you'll see how much sauce would generally go on those pancakes.

The people near us (likely foreign tourists) got omelets, which can run anywhere from $11 to $13. While the omelet looked good, I'd want a bit more food to justify the price, that's all I'll say.

If you plan to go to Boots & Kimo's, you MUST get there early like we did. By the time we left the restaurant about 40 minutes later, at least 30 more people were waiting outside. And this is was on a Thursday, folks. Just imagine what it's like on a weekend.

As good as the pancakes are and as popular as the place is, I really cannot give this place as high a rating as Cinnamon's due to the loud atmosphere and the overkill on the sports decor. Cinnamon's also offers slightly cheaper prices on their food and beverages -- and the food is just as good, if not better. I overwhelmingly prefer Cinnamon's decor (more suitable for dates or business breakfasts/lunches) over Boots & Kimo's.

The macadamia nut sauce is the huge attraction (for locals and tourists alike) that allows for the higher overall menu prices. Other than that, I can't see too many other reasons to come back here because I can get pancakes or omelets someplace else. And I'll be sure to get coffee from a fast food joint next time, because I sure as hell will not pay close to $3 for a "cup o' joe."

In short, I like that the place is bustling with people, and the food is very good. But damn those prices, noise, and decor.... 6/10

No comments:

Post a Comment