TOP 10 Must Try Restaurants in Kona

Located on the slopes of Hualalai in the heart of the Kona Coffee Belt, Holualoa Inn is just a short drive from the best dining in Kailua Kona and Keauhou. Here’s our list of the top 10 restaurants in Kona and the surrounding area – most within a 15-minute drive from the Inn.

ahi tartar at a top Kona restaurant

Jackie Rey’s Mac Nut Ahi Tartare Appetizer

  • Magic’s Beach Grill (4.8 miles, 12 minutes) Right on the water adjacent to popular Magic Sands Beach Park. This is a perfect spot to show up early, have a craft cocktail and do some people watching at the bar before sitting down to a sunset dinner. Seasonal rotating menu is both playful and refined and showcases Big Island ingredients while supporting local fishermen and farmers.
  • Jackie Rey’s Ohana Grill (3.8 miles, 8 minutes) The colorful old-Hawaii ambiance is just the right mix of fine dining and aloha casual. Restaurant features fresh continental cuisine with an island flare and a classic menu sure to satisfy. Start with their Mac Nut Ahi Tartare or Pork Spring Rolls.

    dining room at a top Kona restaurant

    Jackie Rey’s Dining Room

  • Huggo’s (4.6 miles, 10 minutes) Located right on the ocean in Kailua Kona, Huggo’s combines a romantic, elegant setting with the fresh seafood and local ingredients. Specialties include their award-winning Teriyaki Steak, recipe unchanged since 1969 and the Hook, Line & Sinker- the chef’s daily fresh fish signature creation.
  • Umekes Fish Market Bar & Grill (6.1 miles, 15 minutes) Great for lunch or dinner this local favorite has one of the best poke bowls in town, but also has lots of other options if raw fish isn’t your thing. Hawaiian ahi (yellow tail tuna) and buttery Hawaiian avocados are a match made in heaven so don’t miss out on a scoop of Da Avo poke with a side of Ho’io Salad (fern shoots). Furikake on top? Yes please.
    fresh fish at a top Kona restaurant

    Jackie Rey’s Locally Caught Nightly Fish Special

     

  • Foster’s Kitchen (4.8, 12 minutes) Right on the waterfront of Ali’i drive, this is another great spot to watch the sunset. Foster’s Kitchen has a menu chock full of fresh local ingredients and proudly make most of their items in house and from scratch. Diverse and eclectic, there’s something on the menu for everyone. Save room for Lilikoi Cheesecake for dessert!
  • Kona Inn (5.0 miles, 10 minutes) This historic open-air restaurant right on the ocean in Kona is known for their fresh seafood and award-winning Mai Tai’s. Start with the Jumbo Shrimp Cocktail followed by their Macadamia Nut Crusted Mahi Mahi or a delicious Rib Eye Steak.
  • Broke Da Mouth Grindz (6.3, 16 minutes) Broke da mouth is Hawaiian pidgin slang for “delicious,” and grindz means “food,” and Broke Da Mouth Grindz delivers on that name. If you’re looking to try real-deal unfussy Hawaiian and Filipino food in a casual atmosphere, don’t miss this Kona-icon for dishes like Oxtail Adobo, Garlic Furikake Chicken and Kalbi Beef Ribs. Featured on Food Network’s Diners Drive-ins and Dives with Guy Fieri.
  • Izakaya Shiono (6.1, 15 minutes) A sister restaurant to their flagship Sushi Shiono, Izakaya Shiono offers delicious classic sushi and sashimi, but also a delightful variety of other Japanese staples. Offering the highest quality fresh seafood, be sure to look for local seasonal Kona delicacies such as kampachi, ahi, ono, butterfish and abalone.
    night exterior of a top Kona restaurant

    The Entrance to Ulu Ocean Grill & Sushi Lounge. Photo Courtesy of Four Seasons Resort Hualalai

     

  • Ulu Ocean Grill & Sushi Lounge (19.4 miles, 35 minutes) Ok, ok, so this one isn’t right in Kona, but it’s worth the drive- both for food and ambiance. Regional, seasonal, and artisanal, Ulu Ocean Grill located at the Four Season Hualalai takes fresh and local to whole new levels. Outdoors, right on the beach, just steps away from having your toes in the sand and a sweeping view of the coastline. At night, tiki torches and star light provide an unbeatable romantic atmosphere. For an indulgent splurge, it can’t be beat.
  • Kenichi Pacific (5.6 miles, 11 minutes) Their elegant décor is only surpassed by their Japanese and Pacific Rim fusion menu. Each sushi roll is a work of art, as is their signature Duck Confit. Enjoy a wide selection of sake and don’t miss their Tenderloin Carpaccio drizzled in truffle oil appetizer.
french toast breakfast near Kona

Holualoa Inn’s Liliko’i French Toast Breakfast Special

 

After a fantastic meal at one of these unforgettable Kona restaurants, don’t miss out on breakfast sourced from fresh, local ingredients (many right here on the farm) at our Big island bed and breakfast. The Innkeepers at Holualoa Inn are happy to book a table for you. Just e-mail concierge@holualoainn.com or call (808) 324-1121. Bon appétit!