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“Why shut so early?”
Review of Hapa J's

Hapa J's
Ranked #11 of 222 Restaurants in San Clemente
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Hawaiian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Bar Scene, Business meetings, Romantic, Groups, Local cuisine, Special Occasion Dining, Child-friendly
Dining options: Breakfast, After-hours, Dinner, Lunch, Reservations, Takeout
Reviewed 19 October 2017 via mobile

We had a great time here. I wish we had known that some of the appetisers were sharing size as we definitely over ordered. The food was great but the cocktails were even better! But why shut at 9pm? We were set for a rip roaring night out that was cut short .

Thank quikflik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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3 - 7 of 191 reviews

Reviewed 3 October 2017

This is an excellent Hawaiian restaurant, contrary to another person's over lengthy review. The recipes are all from a Hawaiian chef who lives on the Big Island - a native Hawaiian! The restaurant is super chill, mainly locals, not tourists - the bar is like a Cheers setting, we all know one another.
The food is excellent, extremely tasty. Our favorites are the Thai Beef Salad, the Country Chicken salad, and their pulled pork anything!
Also, try the Taco Tuesday, the Ahi tacos are a local favorite!

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Thank Michael K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 September 2017

The tacos were fresh hand made with corn tortillas. The chips and guacamole were great. The servers were polite and attentive. The south room was full and very loud. We enjoyed our meal but it was difficult to hear ourselves speaking to one another.

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Thank 401l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 September 2017

Gotta try the unique food options here and make sure not to miss the pulled pork. This place has an island feel to it and the portion sizes are big. Pleasant music and good service round out the positive experience. It was recommended to me and I will recommend it to you.

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Thank Julie P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 September 2017 via mobile

I always feel a little mean leaving three stars especially when the people were nice and the food was more than edible. Service was reasonable attentive and the food was served really fast, which really served our purposes well! We were driving to LAX and needed a quick and close lunch stop, we placed our order on their website and food was ready shortly after our arrival. So again filled the need, filled the belly.

But for reals... so far from authentic Hawaiian, so far... (SMH).

I should have known it was a tourist spot, and probably more for drinking than eating, based on the location. Any suspicions were confirmed the second he put the plate in front of me and said "short ribs?" My heart sunk as I looked on three slices of boneless steak covered in sauce. I considered for a moment that maybe the waiter had delivered the wrong order and he must have mistakenly given me someone's Teri-steak, except that it was accompanied by a pile of kimchee as detailed on the menu. There is no way any Hawaiian ever would call this Kalbi. Kalbi does not have sauce. It's marinated. It's delicious. This was meat with teriyaki sauce. Grrr. Just call it what it is. It's not a problem paying 15 bucks for Teri steak if that is what you want, but is a major disappointment when you like Kalbi as much as I do.

The hubs ordered a loco moco (smh). The burger was well-well done and dry as a bone. In Hawaii, if you order this you get a massive pile of rice, eggs, patty just SMOTHERED in gravy. He referred to this one has having a light glaze. Probably would have been manageable had the burger not been so dry.

Friend ordered the poke, was smothered in spicy mayo. But she said was good and filling enough despite being small.

All of these things actually make sense if this place is going for, as another reviewer mentioned, "Hawaiian fusion." And they certainly make sense if you want a Hawaiian themed restaurant that is tourist friendly, where you can get away with charging $4 for an iced tea. Had I caught wind of that ahead of time I probably would have skipped it just because I do so love the real deal. Will definitely not go back.

1  Thank Chrissy G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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