Pau Hana Patrol: Brick Oven Pizza

May. 28, 2015 | 0 Comments In the Star-Advertiser Friday Print Edition
20150521-9786 PHOTO BY DENNIS ODA.  MAY 21, 2015.

Brick Oven Pizza also has a spacious seating area at the bar. / Dennis Oda

REVIEW BY NINA WU / nwu@staradvertiser.com

Brick Oven Pizza brings back fond memories of a honeymoon trip to Kauai years ago, and a pleasant stop after a day at the beach.

BRICK OVEN PIZZA

46-047 Kamehameha Highway

(808) 235-8561

www.brickovenpizzahi.com

Happy Hour
2-6 p.m. daily

>> French fries, $6
>> Chicken wings, $7
>> Sauteed mushrooms, calamari, $8
>> Beer on tap (Corona, Stella Artois), $4-$4.50
>> Wines by the glass, $5 (except chardonnay)
>> Brick Oven Mai Tai, Frozen Mo‘o, Bad-Ass
Blueberry Mojito, $9
>> Ice cream sundae, $3

When I learned that there was a Brick Oven in Kaneohe, the restaurant went onto my list. The pizza pub, which has had a presence on Kauai since 1977, now has two locations on Oahu — in Kapolei and at Kaneohe Bay Shopping Center.

THE EXPERIENCE

What you first notice is how spacious this Brick Oven Pizza is inside. It has plenty of seating, with both tables and booths in the front dining area. The restaurant also feels nice and airy, with multiple windows. The decor here is more contemporary than country.

The bar is in a separate area at the back. It has a mellow vibe, with plenty of stools arranged around three sleek, flat-screen TVs.

This is a place for everybody: singles, couples, friends, seniors and families with young children. (Yes, it’s kid-friendly.) On a recent Sunday afternoon, the place was almost half full while a baseball game played on the largest screen.

We brought our 4-year old, finding a comfortable spot in a booth where he could bounce around. We were placed next to a window that looked out onto the parking lot, framed by the Koolaus.

It took some time for food to come out, but service was friendly and pleasant.

Brick Oven Pizza in the Kaneohe Shopping Center has happy hour daily from 2 to 6 p.m. Items on the specially priced menu include bruschetta and steamed clams. Dennis Oda / Doda@staradvertiser.com

THE FOOD

The happy hour menu includes appetizers, beers on tap, cocktails and a few desserts. The appetizers are $1 to $2 off during happy hour. You have the usual fare of chicken wings ($7), calamari and sauteed mushrooms (both $8).

The calamari was nice and crisp, the sauteed mushrooms ($8) juicy and garlicky, while the BBQ chicken wings, smothered in a sauce that required plenty of napkins, were tasty. My finicky 4-year-old would not eat the mushrooms, but loved the wings. You can also go for a wing trio ($11) which lets you sample three flavors – BBQ, buffalo and teriyaki. Nothing fancy, but decent portions.

What would be nice to try next time is the Kalaheo smoke meat ($11). The steamed clams in lemon, garlic, butter and oyster sauce ($10) are popular, too.

No trip to Brick Oven would be complete without a pizza, so we ordered a small, 10-inch margherita ($15.30). You can also build your own pizza, choosing a sauce and two toppings for the same price. I liked having a choice between wheat or white dough, but found the wheat
dough to be dense.

Topping it all off with a chocolate ice cream sundae was a sweet reward ($3) that still fit into a $60 budget.

THE DRINKS

The beer on tap comes at a decent price ($4, compared with $6) for happy hour, and who could argue when it’s served up in a cold pint glass to go with your calamari or pizza? If you and a friend are sharing, a pitcher might be the best choice, at $12 during happy
hour (regularly $16).

Cocktails here aren’t necessarily fancy, but have amusing names and are tasty enough. Brick Oven has its own signature Mai Tai with Bacardi, bois creme de banana and Orgeat and a float of Whalers dark rum. The Frozen Mo‘o is a blend of mint and coconut water vodka with fresh lime sour.

I went with a Bad-Ass Blueberry Mojito, a refreshing combo of muddled blueberries with mint, “fortified” with Bombay Sapphire and fresh lime sour served over the rocks in a pint glass. I enjoyed it. The three cocktails are $9 each.

20150521-9842 FTR BRICK OVEN

Taylor Tatofi, left, with 1-year-old daughter, Tiva Tatofi. / Dennis Oda

THE VERDICT

Overall, Brick Oven is a nice, laid-back place to hang out, whether with friends or the family, while grabbing a bite to eat. We would come back again.

BEYOND THE PIZZA

A happy hour menu brings a variety of choices and pleasing cocktails to the Brick Oven table Brick Oven Pizza in the Kaneohe Shopping Center has happy hour daily from 2 to 6 p.m. Items on the specially priced menu include bruschetta and steamed clams, above.

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