Best Kapa Restaurants will Satisfy any Craving

Kauai may be the smallest of the Hawaiian Islands, but it is home to an abundance of delicious restaurants, and historic Kapa'a Town does too. The east side locale is the central part of the island, displaying more of a hustle and bustle than any other part of the island, so it makes sense that there would be a selection of awesome places to east. From hole-in-the-wall eateries that harbor spectacular cuisine, to high end places to dress up for, the Kapa'a restaurants should not go unexplored.

On the far end of Kapa'a, near the lushest area of the town is Caffe Coco. We don't know why it's spelled differently, but we know that the food is great and the ambiance seems to be out of a fairytale. Dine in a garden setting surrounded by flowers and vines, while serenaded by live acoustic music and Christmas lights illuminating the dinner.

Not far down the road is Brick Oven Pizza, where you'll find an all you can eat Italian buffet every Thursday night. Great food in abundance can be found here. For an entirely different culinary experience, Restaurant Kintaro serves up the island's best sushi and homes style Japanese food.

So when you feel those cravings for a delicious meal, remember that our list of the ten best restaurants on the east side will guide you to the right place.


The beautiful gardens surrounding this luau make for a magical setting, and one that you'll want to explore before the night kicks in. This is the traditional Hawaiian version of a buffet, with a feast of Polynesian food. When the conch is blown and the roasted pig set out, the feast begins. The buffet ensures that you won't go hungry and includes lomi salmon, mahi mahi, chicken, beef, macaroni salad, and plenty of vegetables and desserts. A full bar is available throughout. The dramatic production that follows features a wealth of color, music, dance, and spectacle that represents the whole of the Pacific world. A wonderful environment.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Lu'aus are a traditional Hawaiian feast, and Smith's is known as the best on the island.

Local Expert tip: Check out some of the nearby sacred Hawaiian places along the river before going to the luau.

Read more about Smith's Tropical Paradise Luau →

Delectable cuisine, mingling the flavors of Thailand and Hawaii, awaits at this charming establishment, sheltered in an old homestead. Fresh ingredients figure prominently on the menu, and fish and seafood are especially appealing, whether in sushi rolls, in saut�s, or simply cooked to perfection. If you're in the mood for meat, you'll find that pork, chicken, and lamb are also skillfully prepared. A relaxed, tropical ambience colors the place, providing an appropriate cap to a day of fun and leisure. Located in the heart of Kapa'a, Lemongrass Grill won't be far from just about anywhere you're staying. Most nights are okay without reservations, but they're worth the effort on weekends.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Located in the heart of Kapa'a, Lemongrass Grill is easily accessible and serves up large portions of regional fare.

Local Expert tip: Try the grilled salmon in choo chee curry.

Read more about Lemongrass Grill and Seafood & Sushi Bar →

The name says it all, the full bar and restaurant is truly a beach side Oasis. Breathtaking ocean views can be enjoyed, and both outdoor and indoor seating are available. A unique and positive aspect at Oasis is that they serve a menu that features 85 percent locally produced food. Sea food is all prepared wonderfully wit a Pacific twist, meats are served in unique forms such as lamb pot pie and ox tail bao bun. For dessert, don't miss the white chocolate chiffon cake or the haupia, a classic local coconut dessert.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Happy hours drink specials run daily from 4 to 6 p.m.

Local Expert tip: The Sunday brunch is one of the best on the island.

Read more about Oasis →


Healthy is the goal here with unique meals such as fish or tofu wraps, tacos, salads, satays and sandwiches. You'll find lots of veggies mixed in with the vegetarian options or the fresh local fish. They also make really great unique drinks such as hibiscus lemonade, as well as a regular and really good lemonade. It's pretty simple, order at the counter and take out or enjoy at one of the few sidewalk tables or tiny bar in the back. Great, healthy food that is quite different than anywhere else. Mermaid's is an easy place to stop and grab lunch to go or enjoy it at their few tables along the sidewalk.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: A true hole-in-the-wall, Mermaids Cafe is one of those unassuming restaurants that surprisingly serves up amazing food.

Local Expert tip: Try the ahi wrap and check out the specials.

Read more about Mermaids Cafe →

Papaya's Natural Food Market
Photo courtesy of papayas

Known for its selection of organic, vegetarian, and health-food fare, this market and gourmet deli is as good for eating as it is for shopping. Dining is available inside, but the best tables are outdoors, shaded by market umbrellas. Salads and soups are crafted from fresh ingredients and make terrific light snacks. A variety of daily specials ups the ante, offering chicken, fish, pastas, garden burgers, pizza, and an array of ethnic dishes. Smoothies and desserts also make yummy treats. Papaya's is one of the best places in Kapa`a for grab and go lunch to take to a nearby beach or attraction.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Papaya's is the only true natural and organic place to eat in Kapa'a, and they do well with their hot bar and deli selection.

Jade's expert tip: Get a fresh juice from the deli to go with lunch.

Read more about Papaya's Natural Food Market →

Olympic Cafe
Photo courtesy of aol travel

Sunny and comfortable, with French doors thrown open to the street, this pleasant cafe invites patrons to stop in for a bite to eat or just a sweet snack. Full-bodied espressos serve as a nice counterpoint to the variety of pastries (including muffins fragrant with pineapple and coconut), while breakfast features French toast, egg dishes, and omelets. Later in the day, you'll find fresh seafood, burgers, chicken, kalua pork, and other local favorites. Kick back for a while and enjoy the food and ambiance. Located in historic Kapa`a town on the eastern shore, the eatery is very close to many other restaurants and shops.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Olympic Cafe is centrally located, and offers large portions of traditional breakfast fare.

Local Expert tip: Drop in for taco Tuesdays for all you can eat tacos.

Read more about Olympic Cafe →

Brick Oven Pizza
Photo courtesy of kauai cottage

Travelers and locals alike lift up Brick Oven's as the best pizza on the island, and you will too once you sample the fragrant, hearth-baked pies. The family-owned establishment has honed its craft well over the past decades, and crisp crusts (white or whole-wheat), succulent sauces, and authentic toppings conspire to test your resolve. Local seafood, real cheeses, fresh vegetables, and even homemade sausage number among the options – and that's just to start! The menu also offers salads and sandwiches made with fresh-baked breads. They offer a good selection of local beer to accompany pizza or other classic Italian dishes.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Brick Oven pizza prepares awesome pizza, and offers affordable all you can eat buffets.

Local Expert tip: If you've have children in your party, ask for a ball of dough for them to play with.

Read more about Brick Oven Pizza →

One of Kauai's most celebrated Asian establishments, Kintaro has built its reputation on sublime cuisine and unobtrusive service. Amid serene Asian decor, folks dive into sushi, sashimi, teppanyaki, tempura, yakitori, and hot pot dishes. Chefs are eminently capable, crafting incredible fare from the freshest fish, vegetables, seafood, and meats. Tatami and table seating are both available, and dinners come with miso soup, pickled vegetables, rice, and tea. The sushi bar makes for a fun hangout, too. You'll want reservations here, but just make sure to stop in at this unassuming roadside restaurant in Kapaa. This is no doubt the best sushi on the island.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Kintaro is a tried and true Kauai eatery for the freshest and most well prepared fish on the island.

Local Expert tip: Restaurant Kintaro is only open for dinner and reservations are necessary.

Read more about Restaurant Kintaro →

Should you be in the mood for a leisurely meal, surrounded by tropical foliage and the charm of a restored home-turned-restaurant, this winsome cafe is a wonderful destination. The creative menu gains inspiration from island produce and seafood and is eminently healthy. No red meat is served, but you'll find plenty of local fish (grilled with local fruit, dressed with wasabi cream), poultry, and vegetarian dishes along with pastas and other Italian dishes. Daily specials, fashioned from what's freshest, are consistently top-quality. The pace is rather relaxed, so plan accordingly. It's casual but offers a local style elegance in a very unique setting.

Recommended for Kapa'a's Best Restaurants because: Dining here is like eating in the Secret Garden, enjoying great food with a live jungle atmosphere highlighted by Christmas lights.

Read more about Eat Healthy Cafe →


Meet Jade Eckardt

Raised on the Big Island of Hawaii, Jade has traveled the world and doesn't intend to stop, yet the Hawaiian Islands are still her favorite place. She spent seven years living on Oahu and...  More About Jade