Friday, July 29, 2011

Aiea Grill

Aiea Grill, located in Beaverton, Oregon, serves their take on Hawaiian BBQ.

How to order at Aiea Grill
Ordering at Aiea Grill is pretty simple in general: pick a regular or mini entree (regular has one choice, two choices, or three choices; mini has up to two choices) and pick two sides to go with it. I did need a few minutes to pick which entrees to go with, since they all looked pretty good. In the end, I went with a mini 2-choice plate of teriyaki chicken and pork adobo, with potato-macaroni salad and brown rice ($7.25).

The teriyaki chicken is a marinated, grilled chicken breast, drizzled with teriyaki glaze. Aiea Grill makes their pork adobo by simmering chunks of pork shoulder in a garlic-soy sauce until the meat is tender.

Mini 2-choice of teriyaki chicken and pork adobo with potato-mac salad and brown rice
One of my good friends got Aiea Grill's Mushroom Moco, one hamburger patty topped with grilled mushrooms, grilled onions, gravy, and two eggs, with a side of potato-macaroni salad.

Mushroom Moco with potato-macaroni salad
The pork adobo was very good. The pork was extremely tender and the amazing flavors of the garlic-soy sauce really made it successful.

Unfortunately, that's pretty much where the positives end. The teriyaki chicken was quite bad. The chicken breast was dry and was not marinated too well (at least in comparison to other places). It was a struggle to cut the chicken. Mild teriyaki flavors here, but that's really due to the sauce on top. I wouldn't even say it was a glaze (as Aiea Grill puts it) was more like a sauce on my portion.

The cold potato-macaroni salad was average at best. The elbow macaroni was cooked nicely, and they added a nice proportion of mayonnaise (not too much). It's better than a couple of places, but still could use work on flavoring and color. Adding more seasonings (especially more pepper) and vegetables (like peas or shredded carrots) would really do wonders here.

I sampled my friend's Mushroom Moco. Good flavors on the gravy, and the mushrooms really come through in the dish. The patty was just OK. But a huge error here on the eggs: they were basically fried eggs...a huge no-no in mocos! The eggs should be over-easy, so when cut into, the runny yolk coats the rest of the dish, marrying its flavors with the savory gravy, hamburger patty, onions, and rice (and in this case, mushrooms as well). Such a shame.

The man taking my order and my friend's order really did not seem too helpful when I asked him for recommendations. He was not very enthusiastic...seemed like he wanted to just go home and take a nap instead.

Even though the pork adobo was delicious, I'm just not a fan of Aiea Grill overall. 3.25/10

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