There’s a very fine line distinguishing modern-day Honolulu from historic Chinatown. Indigo sits on such line and creates a balance between the two as a longtime Honolulu mainstay. The classy restaurant not only brings harmony to cultural districts but to worldly flavors; it’s the only place on the island that blends modern Asian, French and Mediterranean cuisine into one decadent delight.
Indigo’s known for its blend of fine-dining and laid-back ambiance.
Call it foodie Feng Shui or just a cross of East meets West, Indigo is the yin to the yang of flavorful fusion in Hawaii. Local chef and owner Glenn Chu grew up eating his grandma’s cooking, with a giant wok as her secret weapon. He went on to study Greek and Italian cooking in college before eventually opening Indigo in 1994.
Since then, it has helped showcase a classier side of Chinatown. Every day from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., a musical repertoire of jazz and blues stream from its doorway and up Nuuanu Avenue, which is defined mostly by the holistic medicine shops, tattoo parlors and florists. The Indigo night life offers music, drinks and preposterously delicious pupus that can be found in a separate bar area appropriately named the Green Room Lounge for its string of green lanterns hanging across the ceiling. They light up the aged brick walls with a dim green glow and add to the relaxed ambiance of martinis, pinot noir and chardonnay.
VIDEO: A bluesy night at Indigo’s Green Room Lounge brings a little class to Chinatown.
Our friend Jason Laeha has been playing here for quite some time, acquiring a slew of fans eager to be wooed by his melodies every Tuesday night. Sometimes, my boyfriend will join him for a set, which gives me a good excuse to come to Indigo (as his #1 fan, of course!). I love the vibe and the mod decor in the Green Room, which acts as a seamless continuation and extension of the main restaurant. The knee-high tables and padded ottoman stools remind me of stuff you might see at the Honolulu Design Center on Kapiolani Boulevard; along with the elaborate abstract paintings and bronze wall adornments that sink into the scene.
Find a different shade of nightlife at Indigo, as it emerges from the budding arts and culture district of Honolulu.
INDIGO • 1121 Nuuanu Ave., Honolulu, HI 96817 • See website for menu, drink specials and business hours www.indigo-hawaii.com • 808-521-2900 • Valet and street parking; near bus route