Hawaii’s first Italian street fair hits Kakaako

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By Desiree Sumaoang

Pizza, risotto, arancini and more: Hawaii's first-ever Italian festival hits the streets of Kakaako this Saturday, and for one night at least, Festa Italiana is bringing a slice of Italy to the middle of the Pacific.

Think food, Italian fashion and cars, live entertainment. A beer and Italian wine garden. You'll stroll amid the flavors, aromas and sights of Italy while stilt walkers mingle with the crowds and live art takes shape on Cooke Street. There'll be performances by Mango Season, Hawaii Opera Theatre and more. Tantra Grillo, the Italian-American musical personality, will host the event by the Friends of Italy Society of Hawaii.

Along with Festa Italiana in Strada: The Street Festival, which is free and open to the public, you can buy tickets for the Passaporto Italiana: Passport to Italy VIP experience. For $100 you'll get nine tastings from restaurants like Taormina, Noe at the Four Seasons and Vino, plus curated wine pours and a cocktail. You'll find Festa Italiana details and the ticket link at the end of this post.

Intrattenimento: Entertainment

Live performances
Mango Season
Hawaii Youth Symphony
Hawaii Opera Theatre
Pierre Grill
Mike Lewis Trio
DJ Mickey Gold
Tantra Love
DJ ML Smoothly

Street performers and artists
Italian sports cars from Velocity Honolulu
Stilt walkers
Chalk artists
Live art performances

Cibo e Vino: Food & Wine


Appetito Waikiki food image 2
APPETITO — Crispy fried portobello

Appetito Waikiki food image 3APPETITO — Naomi's spicy meatballs

22140892_356265768158392_2356560103065814148_nAPPETITO — Shrimp arugula pasta

Appetito Waikiki food image 1APPETITO — White bean hummus
APPETITO — Italian strawberry and lilikoi sodas

e733395c4524c7d4ab9d59983f5a545cBRICK FIRE TAVERN — Margherita pizza

C & K LUMPIA — Chicken, bacon, and alfredo pizza lumpia

FLAVORS OF THE WORLD — Italian sausage sandwich; and parmesan chicken on penne pasta topped with sizzling Italian meatballs

HULA SHRIMP — Butter garlic noodles with choice of fish, chicken or steak

20374709_1648523701824808_2353786845079155750_nIL GELATO HAWAII — Assorted gelato & sorbetto flavors; and Affogato cold Kona espresso poured over gelato

INFERNO PIZZA — Truffle pizza with mushrooms, garlic, truffle oil, pepperoni and bacon

ISLAND OLIVE OIL — Samplings of extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegars

JJ DOLAN'S — Italian sausage and grilled onion and pepper sandwiches; and Zeppoli

KOOLAU BURGER — Meatball sliders

megaload aranciniMEGA LOAD BURGERS — Sicilian arancini; Crab cakes; Seafood risotto; Italian burger

Olay-Thai-428x570OLAY'S THAI RESTAURANT — IThaiLian Cheesy Rice Ball with Italian/Thai red sauce

Olay-Thai_2-428x570OLAY'S THAI RESTAURANT — Pumpkin spaghetti
OLAY'S THAI RESTAURANT — Drunken Pasta; Pad Thai Risotto

ONO KETTLE POP — Italian flag popcorn & Italian-flavored popcorn

WAIMANALO COUNTRY FARMS — Italian lemonade soda


PASSAPORTO ITALIANO: Passport to Italy VIP Experience

DONATO'S CHARCUTERIE STATION from FLAVORS OF ITALY — Parmigiano reggiano, 40-month-old Vacca Rossa, and salumi (salted meats)

Aroma Caffe - Mafiachino

Aroma Caffe - Aromamore image 2
HAWAIIAN AROMA CAFFE — Coffee cocktails: Caffesta Italian tiramisu-inspired cocktail; Mana Mia mint & mocha cocktail; Mafiachino; Aromamore espresso-based cocktail

Island Olive Oil_Chef Passanisi
ISLAND OLIVE OIL and DAVID PASSANISI — Dish Dessert Trio: Island Olive Oil Basil "Bigne" filled with Vincente Sicilian Almond Cream & topped with basil flower; Lemongrass Ricotta Panna Cotta with fresh tropical fruit and pomegranate & finished with 100 lemon "pearls"; Chocolate Balsamic Cream Soda, a dark chocolate balsamic & blood orange olive oil dessert mocktail

MATTEO MISTURA from MATTEO'S OSTERIA — Risotto ai funghi porcini, Carnaroli risotto, porcini mushrooms, saba, aged parmigiano reggiano foam

Maurizio Roberti Food Dish
MAURIZIO ROBERTI from VELOCITY HONOLULU — Pizza Pinwheel Lollipops, a classic recipe rolled on a stick & topped with gourmet delights

Sale Pepe Maui - credit Chef Robert Barrera
MICHELE DI BARI from SALE PEPE — Gnocchetti Sardi con Niihau agnello (lamb); sugo e riotta salata

NOE at FOUR SEASONS RESORT OAHU — Chef Ryo's Panzanella with ahi, baguette, red onion, Ho Farms tomatos, champagne vinegar, balsamic reduction, lemon, micro basil, EVOO, ricotta cheese, black pepper, red salt

Patrizio Roncato Food Dish
PATRIZIO RONCATO from VELOCITY HONOLULU — Seppia, a raw cuttlefish tagliatelle in al nero (infused squid ink) with velvety seaweed, ink dust and crispy tentacles

TAORMINA — Calamari ripieni con couscous Siciliano with calamarim onion, bread crumbs, anchovy, olives, caper, oregano, egg, salt, pepper, olive oil

VINO ITALIAN TAPAS & WINE BAR — Crab & shrimp ravioli in a seafood bisque with bread crumbs and parmesan cheese

Andrea Onetti of Bevy
Crepes Hawaii
Da Ultimate Grindz

Festa Italiana
Saturday, Oct. 7
4 to 10 p.m.
Cooke Street at Auahi Street
Admission to Street Festival: Free
Admission to Passoporto Italiano: $100
Passaporto Italiano Tickets