Star Noodle

It is so rare that I find a restaurant to add to my short list of favorites. Yet, I’ve found one. I was safely fed, the staff was knowledgeable, and the food was amazing!

There’s been a lot of hype surrounding Star Noodle as of late. They’ve won multiple awards from “Best New Restaurant” to “Best New Chef” and others. Sheldon Simeon, all the way from the Big Island, has created a fabulous new dining experience for the island. The menu is simple, but the food is full of well balanced, complex flavors. How he has been able to keep the momentum for this long is amazing; as is the following the restaurant has considering its location (hidden up at the top of a light industrial area).

The interior of Star Noodle is minimal in style, and has a mix of light and heavy materials with a slight Asian influence. The doors to the restrooms are heavy sliding slabs of wood, but the tables and chairs in the dining room seem as light as feathers to the eye. The lighting is neither too cold, nor too warm (though not fantastic for food photography when using an old generation 1 iPhone).

You’ll want to be sure to call in a reservation, or be prepared to wait 20 to 30 minutes for a table, even at 8:30pm (like we did). My only issue with this is that there is nowhere for customers to sit and wait, and we weren’t offered a menu to look over while we waited. We just had to stand there. That’s okay though when you’ve got the arms of your love to be enveloped in. If you’re alone, try to get a seat at the bar, or bring a book.

The mix of music was fun, and got more so toward the end of the evening shift. I know someone there likes Morrissey (so do I).

I think you’re ready for me to shush about the other stuff and describe the food aren’t you? Alright, well that’s easy and uneasy to do. You see, it’s one of those things where you can’t quite describe how good the food is, you can only describe how you felt while eating it, and after eating it.

First, let me say that my server Michelle was outstanding. She knew exactly what was gluten free and when I asked if they cooked the noodles all in the same water she went and found out. She said they did, but that if I was willing to wait they would put on a pot of fresh water to boil just for me. I said I was willing to wait, and so it was done. She shared her personal favorites with us, and we discovered we had a friend in common.

After a long time of looking at the menu we finally decided. It was difficult to decide because rice noodles, or 100 percent buckwheat noodles, could be used in any dish I chose them to be. However, we chose to go with Pad Thai since it is a good way to judge a restaurant. We’ve had Pad Thai so many places, so we knew we could tell if it was up to par or not. Oh yeah, it was.

Devin chose to have the pork buns (which are not gluten free). He said they were pretty good. A touch sweet, but they fit well. He really liked the hoisin sauce served alongside them.

I ordered the Vietnamese Crêpe. Basically, it’s eggs and glutinous rice flour made into a crispy crepe and filled with shrimp and ground pork cooked in coconut milk. With the crêpe were some Bibb lettuce leaves, mint, Thai basil, cilantro, and julienned carrot. I was told that the best way to go about eating it was to put pieces of the crêpe and meats into a leaf of lettuce with the herbs and carrots. A light sauce, which reminded me a bit of a mild Thai sweet chili sauce without the chilies, was there for drizzling onto my, now, little Vietnamese tacos. Oh my god, I’ll be ordering this again.

The crunch of the lettuce and crêpe, along with the textures of the meats, the freshness of the herbs, and the sweet sauce all made a delicious combination. But, it didn’t stop there. The flavors went on when I added the hot chili sauce, or the spicy wasabi mustard to my tacos.

As we shared the Pad Thai, and had our own plates, we were completely stuffed by the end of the meal and had no room for dessert. How sad. Next time we’ll eat less in the main courses and save room for dessert. However, we were starving after Devin’s gig at the Royal Lahaina.

Oh, I forgot to mention that you should try the Cranzu. It’s non-alcoholic, and it’s delicious. It’s cranberry juice and yuzu (a type of citrus) juice mixed together. Mmmm. Devin said it was like being kicked in the mouth in a good way.

Devin says “No single thing was the most amazing thing I’ve eaten, but all together it’s one of the better places on the island. It’s all about the overall experience of the place and the food.” He was also very happy with the prices.

I’m in complete agreement with him. It’s also so nice to know there is somewhere on the west side I now love and look forward to dining at in the future. I might even beg for trips over there just to go to Star Noodle.

Congratulations Star Noodle. You just won another award. You’re in the Top 3.

9 thoughts on “Star Noodle”

  1. Visited Stsr Noodle yesterday for a late lunch / early dinner. All I can say is, “WOW”! My husband and I were blown away by the freshness of the ingredients and the flavor of the dishes.
    We shared the Vietnamese Crepes – heaven on a plate! My husband had the hot & sour soup – he would have licked the bowl if we hadn’t been in public. I had the best GF Pad Thai ever.
    As you said, the staff was fantastic, and everyone was taken care of quickly and kindly. Can’t ask for more than great food, great service and reasonable prices!
    Was a little hard to find but so thankful we kept searching.
    Thank you so much for your recommendation – good to see that several years later, the experience is still spot-on!!

    1. That’s wonderful to hear! I haven’t been over there in a while, so it’s good to know that their standards have been maintained.

  2. I emailed star noodle to find out if there is anything I could eat on their menu because I have multiple food allergies:

    Gluten
    Soy
    Corn
    Peanut
    Almond
    Hazlenut
    Legumes (all beans including green beans and sprouts/shoots except for garbanzo beans – chickpeas)
    Yeast (I can have balsamic and apple cider vinegar)
    Pork
    Turkey
    Mushrooms (all fungus/molds)
    All grains (including wheat, oats, millet, etc. except for rice and quinoa)

    The response was thorough and I can tell that they really care about providing Allergen free options. I will post our correspondence below. I will also post another comment after I visit the restaurant.

    Team star wrote:
    Please see attached for the highlighted items that are easiest for your diet – I caught egg listed in the bottom one, so I neglected any of our egg based noodles.  Below please find an explanation for the items I selected.

     

    Pohole Salad – Fiddle head ferns, Maui onion, Kombu (dried salted seaweed), Dried Shrimp, Dried Cuttlefish, Sesame Oil

    Namul – we can do only Salt blanched watercress w/ sesame seeds, Pickled Daikon (takuan), and Ogo as long as you are ok with Rice Wine Vinegar (you mentioned Apple Cider and Balsamic, so I wasn’t sure).

    Greens Salad – We can neglect our dressings and supply Balsamic and Lemon pressed Olive Oil

    Scallops & Asparagus – no ponzu gelée as it has soy, but we have sauces on the side, or they are delicious themselves

    Ahi Avo – no soy, but the Lemon pressed Olive Oil and Sambal pack enough flavor

    Ribeye- no soy, no mushrooms, select sauces on the side

    Brussels Sprouts – no kimchee puree (there is soy in our kimchee)

    Vietnamese Crepe – the crepe itself is made of egg, but the dish is a lettuce wrap.  I think this will be one of the most enjoyable dishes for you.  We can substitute the pork for chicken or tofu, etc and cook the proteins in coconut milk without bean sprouts.  The lettuce wrap is composed of butter leaf lettuce, thai basil, cilantro, and mint and we also have a selection of sauces for you to choose from to enhance the flavor if the coconut milk is too rich for you.

    Yakitori – no teriyaki

    Pad Thai – no egg, no peanut

    Soba – no tsuyu (contains soy)

    Singapore – no egg

    Mango Pudding is a possibility without the garnishes… coconut milk, gelatin, diced mango, mange puree

     

    With all this said, we can use the pad thai, Singapore, and soba noodles in almost any application for you and modify other noodle dishes (garlic noodles are common with the soba noodle and no soy – garlic oil, sautéed garlic, and fried garlic).  Hope this helps!!

  3. I just found your blog via The Good Eatah and I’m so excited! I visited Maui for the first time in May, and am planning a return trip next April. Star Noodle looks right up my alley – what part of the island is it?

  4. Well darn! I wish I’d known about this place LAST week. It would’ve been perfect! As it was, we ate quite well while there & I didn’t have any obvious reactions to anything. Hooray!

    1. Oh no! I’m so sorry, but I didn’t even know about how good or safe this place was last week. I’m glad you were able to dine well here on the island without any obvious reactions (and hopefully none at all). You’ll have to visit again! Star Noodle seems to be a good excuse. LOL

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