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“Good Idea, poor execution”
3 of 5 bubbles Review of Cactus

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Ranked #25 of 143 Restaurants in Kailua
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: US$8 - US$25
Cuisines: Mexican, Latin, Spanish, Chilean, South American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special Occasion Dining, Child-friendly
Dining options: Lunch, Dinner, Full Bar, Outdoor Seating, Parking Available, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Hamakua Drive
Transit: Bus 57
Description: Cactus is "a celebration of the cuisines of the new Americas with Aloha," transporting the flavors, culinary traditions and techniques from Central and South America as well as Cuba, Puerto Rico and Mexico.Offering the cuisines of the sun, land and sea, Cactus menu selections focuses on:•Local produce from the islands•Shinsato Farms pork from Kahalu’u•Kulana and Kuahiwi beef, veal, wild boar from the Big Island•Sustainably caught or farmed seafood from the island chainDrop-in or reserve a table in our casual, convivial environment with warm, engaging, professional service.
Independence, Oregon, USA
Level Contributor
155 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
“Good Idea, poor execution”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 February 2014

With an interesting menu that is overpriced and a reservation system that could confound anyone, this place is a diamond in the rough. The food was certainly above average, but the rest of the experience drags it down.

  • Visited February 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank RichVW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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178 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Honolulu, Hawaii, United States
Level Contributor
19 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Excellent latin inspired cafe”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 February 2014

Not a Mexican restaurant more a latin cafe but one of 3 places in Kailua I frequent and quickly becoming me and my wife's go to spot for good food. I like the use of all the local ingredients, the chef is super friendly and so is the bar tender. (sorry but we don't get a table as the bar is our spot) Get the house made chips and Guacamole - you'll never eat a chip from a bag again. The seafood is fresh and there's always a handful of daily specials. I could like on croquettas and fry bread.

  • Visited January 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Fred H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
12 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Great local restaurant - inventive and fresh!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 January 2014

Good on Cactus for providing innovative, fresh cuisine to the sleepy side of Oahu in Kailua! Short ribs were excellent and we enjoyed the local vegetables (green pepper dish). Service was friendly.

Visited January 2014
Thank CanKahuna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kailua, Hawaii
Level Contributor
156 reviews
105 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“Local favorite”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 December 2013

Good food and fun atmosphere. Happy Hour is a deal. Staff friendly. The Chef used to be at Kalapawai Market and he opened his own place. He has an eclectic menu and uses local ingredients as much as possible. I like the small plates to share..and don't forget the frozen sangria!

  • Visited December 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank LTVL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pittsburgh, PA
Level Contributor
99 reviews
64 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 88 helpful votes
“Nice Presentation, Food Just OK”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 24 November 2013

My husband and I were visiting friends in Kailua a couple weeks ago. Out of the "highest recommendation" from one of my friends who lives in Kailua, we decided to try Cactus for lunch. I "know" good Latino food having traveled throughout Mexico and Latin America, and this experience was not it. I ordered the chorizo tacos, and my husband ordered a starter with soup and fish tacos. I can say the presentation of the food was very appetizing, but the food itself did not tantalize our tastebuds; very bland. Overall, it's a cute restaurant, and our waiter was very good .... just couldn't get past the "big hype" over this super, delicious Latin food that I feel totally missed the mark.

  • Visited November 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank SandraPittsburgh_PA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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