Standing out from the crowd is something that Crab Bucket strives to do, which is evident in its eclectic menu and unique restaurant decor. With menu items like Fried Alligator ($15) and walls covered in colorful writing, the eatery on the corner of Keeaumoku and Young streets surely is gaining a reputation for being original.
Crab Bucket owner Lyna Nguyen was the first to introduce the Cajun concept to Hawaii when she opened Kickin’ Kajun (which Crab Bucket no longer is affiliated with). Now, at her current venture, Southern-influenced fare offers both locals and tourists a taste of different cultures and flavors that Hawaii often doesn’t have the opportunity to savor.
Take, for instance, Florida Stone Crab Claws ($40). This ocean delicacy is found in rocky Florida waters, where it is fished specifically for its sweet-tasting, firm-textured claw meat. At Crab Bucket, the claws are boiled and served with mustard aioli, which also is from Florida.
The rest of the menu includes a wide variety of a la carte seafood options, combination buckets for a multiplex of Cajun flavors and a diverse selection of seasoning and sauce variations to choose from.
Creative desserts also are offered, like the eatery’s Pineapple Shave Ice ($8), which utilizes a whole pineapple by cutting out the meat and using the shell as a dish. The pineapple is filled with shaved ice, pineapple chunks, li hing mui and even the option to add alcohol — for those 21 and older, and for an extra charge, depending on the selection of alcohol.
Worried about the mess? The restaurant has installed built-in buckets at each table for conveniently — and neatly — depositing shells, tails, claws, and rubbish. There also are paper tablecloths and bibs for extra protection. But, if you’re not worried about getting your hands dirty, Crab Bucket encourages you to dig in!