Living808 got the exclusive first look and taste at Easy ‘que, a new barbecue theme restaurant set to open May 15th in Kailua from the same married team behind the popular brunch spot Over Easy.
The owners, Nik & Jennifer Lobendahn, took their chef team on a barbecue research trip to Austin, Texas for inspiration.
They brought back an appreciation for smoked meats and Southern faves like Sweet tea, but they wanted to do a fresh Hawaii take that incorporated different ingredients and flavors.
While they will smoke ribs and brisket and do many meat dishes, they also have a wide range of vegetables such as a smoked curry cauliflower, beets, and cole slaw.
They’ve also created a mac & cheese dish and an assortment of dipping sauces such as a traditional bbq sauce dubbed “over Easy” in honor of their successful brunch restaurant and Kailua Green which uses Green Thai Curry.
Easy ‘Que will also have a take out counter where you can grab and go and “alcoholic slushies” such as Sweet Tea & Lilikoi.
The slushies are a nod to the popular mixed drinks that were a staple of their predecessor, Cactus Restaurant.
The Lobendahns met years ago while working at Alan Wong’s Restaurant.
Nik is a Kailua native and cooked at Ame in San Francisco and built his reputation for making great pancakes as executive chef at Kapolei Golf Course before following his dream to open his own restaurant with his wife Jennifer.
The two had been contemplating opening a second restaurant in Kailua for a while and are eager to bring what they call “Aloha Barbecue” to Hawaii.
Easy ‘Que is scheduled to open May 15th.
It’s located at 767 Kailua Road.