Sake to me

Yum Cha Asian Eatery is known for its delicious array of Asian fusion cuisine. It also is home to some of the Grand Hyatt’s most delicious beverages.

If you haven’t tried some of its sake drinks, you better make your way down to South Shore.

Baren Pimsaguan, evening bartender at Yum Cha, has been a part of the Hyatt for 15 years. He is the creator of this week’s drink — the Saketini. When I first walked into Yum Cha, I was greeted by day bartender Elmer Ballesteros. Baren was on the sideline, listening and chiming in whatever details I needed for the drinks.

“What’s your name, sir?” I said to Pimsaguan.

“I’m Elmer,” Pimsaguan said.

Everyone in the restaurant laughed.

Of course, I naively thought, “Wow, two Elmers?”

After the laughter, Pimsaguan introduced himself and proceeded to make the Saketini.

“I basically put some ingredients together one day, and everyone seems to like it,” Pimsaguan said.

The Saketini is $13. It is a very smooth, refreshing beverage. The mix of ingredients give the Saketini a sweet, cucumber-like taste. The Saketini is poured into a Martini glass that sits upon a fishbowl-chilled glass.

Other sake cocktails available at Yum Cha are the Sake Potions, including the Purple haze, Lilikoi Blossom, Hawaiian Sun and Lychee Love Potion #5 — they are all priced at $12.

On Thursday and Friday nights there is a kama‘aina special. Locals get 10 percent off on food, draft beer is discounted at $5 and specialty martinis are priced at $8.

Yum Cha, located on 1571 Po‘ipu Road, is open Tuesday through Saturday from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. For more information call (808) 240-6456.

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