Mediterranean Gourmet Opens on Kauai

Restaurant breathes culinary excitement into north shore

By: Dawna Robertson

A unique new restaurant has opened on Kauai’s north shore, featuring traditional Mediterranean dishes and popular island cuisine with a Mediterranean twist. The Mediterranean Gourmet Restaurant is situated in the oceanfront facility originally known as Charo’s, located at Hanalei Colony Resort in Haena.

Mediterranean Gourmet is operated by husband-and-wife team, Imad and Yarrow Beydoun. At age 23, Beydoun moved to the U.S. from Lebanon. He settled in the Monterey, California area, where he worked for many years in kitchen and food and beverage positions at upscale hotels and restaurants.

Last year, the Beydouns relocated to Kauai’s north shore, where Yarrow has family. Beydoun quickly gained a following for his homemade hummus, sold at local farmers markets. His packaged products, including hummus, babaganush, falafels and tabouleh, are still available on Kauai under the Mediterranean Gourmet label at Papaya’s health food stores in Kapaa and Hanalei, Kilauea General Store and the Saturday and Tuesday Hanalei farmers markets.

At Mediterranean Gourmet, Beydoun shares the cuisine of his childhood, featuring fresh, traditional preparations with a homemade touch “just like Mom used to make.” Open for lunch through dinner six days a week, the restaurant presents a menu of appetizers and entrees including popular Middle Eastern standards.

For those whose tastes aren’t so exotic, the menu also offers such familiar dishes as chicken quesadilla, Caesar salad, grilled fish sandwich, hamburger, steak and fresh fish entrees. Diners can complete their meal with island-made cheesecakes, Beydoun’s homemade baklava and a cup of Turkish coffee or French press teas.

Dinner specials are offered each evening, and a bellydancer entertains on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday nights. The restaurant has not yet obtained its liquor license, so diners are invited to bring their own beer or wine.

Situated directly on the beach at Hanalei Colony Resort, Mediterranean Gourmet is open Monday through Saturday from 11a.m.-9 p.m.