There are many ways to create and present Mexican food, the Tortilla Republic restaurant in Poip'u has a twin dining areas that bring island infused modern Mexican cuisine to the table. The daytime into evening ground floor "TR Taqueria and Bar" features a casual friendly environment with easy seating for breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily. For a finer dining environment the upstairs Tortilla Republic Grill opens Monday through Saturday for dinner service only. It is literally next level, but many a local mention how the food downstairs is the way to go for convenience and easy seating, with the exception of the Sunday Brunch which gets rave reviews.
At a Glance:
Cuisine:Modern Mexican-island fusion
Location: Poipu, Kauai
TR Taqueria & Margaritta Bar (downstairs):
Breakfast: Mon Sat 8am 11:30am
Saturday & Sunday Brunch - 9am 3pm
Lunch: Mon Sat 11:30am 5pm
Dinner: daily 5pm 9pm
Happy Hour: daily 3pm 5pm
Tortilla Republic Grill (upstairs):
Monday- Saturday Dinner 5:30 to 9 pm
Open airy chic modern Mexican with riaterrace seating amidst the Shops at Kukui'ula.
*Reservations recommended upstairs/ walk-ins easy downstairs
The Shops at Kukui'ula has a number of eateries to choose from, as Poipu's newest centralized shopping center drew several higher-end restaurants. Yet when asking locals where to grab a bite many suggested the very casual and charming Tortilla Republic for the downstairs service. No reservations necessary, though you can make a call if you have a larger party. The terrace seating is very light and airy with tropical plants and broad shade trees as the view of the scenic central courtyard.
The TR Taqueria and Bar has great modern takes on traditional Mexican faire with bold flavors and Hawaiian fresh ingredients. Lots of artful food presentation, and with the fresh ingredients you can get quite the colorful Kauai palette on your plate. No refried beans or canned heavy ingredients in these dishes. The ownership pledges to avoid such things in favor of quality organic ingredients as much as possible.
The menu has some great alternatives for the "I don't like Mexican food" folks in your party, burgers, salads, and soups are all good options.
Our Staff's Picks:
The island local catch Fish Tacos was hebi, a local reef fish, the day we visited and they were deliciously prepared with a tropical salsa with mango and pineapple chunks. Crazy good! The drink menu itself could keep you here for days. We liked the "Horchata Colada" which mixed Bacardi Superior, Horchata Rum, coconut water, coco puree, lemon squeeze, and orange bitters a brilliant in house creation.
The Sunday Brunch service is very popular in the upstairs seating:
Phone: (808) 742-8884
Lunch menu link: http://tortillarepublic.com/hawaii/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/mb-lunch-menu-012514.pdf
2829 Ala Kalanikaumaka St.
Koloa, HI 96756
From Lihue head west on HI 50/Kaumualii Hwy for 6.6 miles. Turn left onto Maluhia Road/ HI 520 aka the "tree tunnel" and follow for 3.2 miles to stop sign and turn right onto Kaloa Road. Drive 0.1 of a mile then turn left onto the Poipu Road driving 1.5 miles to the circle. At the roundabout take the first right on Ala Kalanikaumaka St. and pull into the Shops at Kukui'ula and turn left and look for parking. The restaurant is in the central courtyard of the shopping center. Look for the orange umbrellas.