What's New at Cactus

May 2-5: Cactus’ 2nd Birthday & Cinco de Mayo Celebration

Update- May 2:

Cinco Breakfast and Lunch Menu now available!


Update- April 29:

Sunday night (May 4)– Live music! Come join us and enjoy El Mariachi Loco.


Photo Gallery


  • Center of photo: Pollo al carbón y Papas con Chorizo

    Beer-brined, Jidori half-fryer chicken grilled over Kiawe' wood. Crispy Ewa fingerling potatoes tossed with house-made turkey chorizo, roasted chiles & onions. CACTUS' guacamole & early-harvest island mango pico de gallo.

    Background (upper-left)-- Huarache, Ensalada: Corn masa flatbread topped with grilled Hele Street nopales, roasted chile Poblano, pepitas, queso Cotija, charred Kahuku corn, local Sharwill avocado & Hau'ula tomato all tossed in a chile Guajillo vinaigrette
  • Center of photo: Tikin Xic

    Day caught island fish, pan-roasted in local banana leaves with local sour orange, lime, achiote, roasted chile Habanero, & oregano. Ho Farm's micro-tomato salad, arroz Mexicano with crispy plantains.
  • In background of photo (clockwise): Queso Fundido & Enchilada

    Top Center-- Queso Fundido: 4 cheeses baked with Big Isle, wild boar picadillo, roasted chiles & Hau'ula tomatoes. Just made papas & tortilla chips, salsa borracho

    Top Right-- Enchilada:, Corn tortillas layered with Kiawe' smoked Hamakua mushrooms, roasted Hele Street nopales, Big Island goat cheese, Kahuku corn, Hau'ula tomatoes & a charred tomatillo, green chile salsa
  • Brisket


Cinco de Mayo CactusJoin us Friday May 2 through Monday May 5. Cactus will be hosting a very happy, second birthday party and a Cinco de Mayo celebration, featuring the sights, sounds and flavors of Mexico and it’s thirty-one sovereign states.

The celebration will include many of Mexico’s unique and delicious street foods, regional cuisine’s and specialties. 
Chef, Owner John Memering will bring to life past experiences working alongside the esteemed Diana Kennedy. Diana is one of the foremost authorities on the art of Mexican cuisine, as well as a practitioner, teacher and author of numerous cookbooks. We’ll be serving it up, all weekend long (and Monday, too!). View the dinner menu….

The three-day celebration will also feature hand crafted cocktails and unique tequila flights, developed by Manny Hinojosa, mixoligist for Tequilas Corzo and Cazadores from Jalisco, Mexico. Also enjoy our infamous sangrias, margaritas and a special selection of Cervezas. Auga Frescas, Horchata, Jarritos sodas, Coca Cola (hecho en México) and house-made paletas for the keiki.

Along with birthday wishes and celebrating Mexico’s independence (which actually occurs in September), Cactus will also be reveling in Mexican culture. The artists, authors, poets, and musicians of Mexican descent will all be part of the weekend’s events.
We will be serving up the best of the best, all that Mexico has to offer.

The celebration begins at 4 pm Friday May 2nd! We hope you will join us as our guest.

Feb. 27: Next Farmers’ Dinner with Oahu Fresh

Oahu Fresh LogoCactus Kailua will host the next installment of its Farmers’ Dinner Series on Thursday February 27, 2013. The menu, developed by owner and Executive Chef John Memering, will feature ingredients from local Oahu farms provided by Oahu Fresh. Oahu Fresh is a collaborative that provides delivery or pick up services of farm fresh produce, meat, pork, cheese, butter, and coffee from farms on Oahu.

The five-course tasting menu is priced at $75, or $105 with wine and cocktail pairings for each course. The menu can be ordered prix fixe with or without drink pairings or ala carte.

Farmers' Dinner menu Oahu FreshHighlights of the evening will include “talk story” sessions with the proprietors of Oahu Fresh along with some of the many local farmers Oahu Fresh works with.

Come and enjoy a sumptuous meal and gain additional perspective on how important Hawaii’s agriculture is to our island’s future.

Two seatings will be available 5:30 and 7:30 by reservation only.

Join us February 14 (and all weekend) for “Cucina Amorio”

Valentine's Day Menu 2014Food plays a starring role in the most important, formative ceremonies of our lives. Thanksgiving, Communion, Ramadan, the Seven Feasts of Israel, weddings, you name it — we use food as a means to celebrate and mourn, welcome and bid farewell, from birth to death.

The food we eat has the ability to improve our health, change our emotions and has even been known to heat things up in the bedroom. In a single bite of a well-prepared meal, one can set the tone of the evening on a first date and may even be responsible for true love.

Cactus’ Valentine’s Day menu will explore the following along with using all the senses as you work your way through each course. We will also be featuring most of our special menu, all weekend long.

November 21: Farmer’s Dinner Featuring Shinsato Farms

CACTUS will be hosting the next installment in its Farmer’s Dinner series on Thursday, November 21, when we warmly welcome Glenn and Amy Shinsato of Shinsato Farms.

In the early 1940’s, Shigemichi Tomei started raising pigs on the windward side of Oahu, and today this farm is still in operation by daughter Amy and family. Shinsato Farm produces pork that is 100% local, their pigs are born and humanely raised right here on Oahu. They are raised on a commercial, corn-based feed; no slop is ever used. Also, no growth stimulants or antibiotics are ever used. Shinsato Farm pork is processed onsite in a USDA-approved facility and under USDA inspection.

Nov farmer's dinner thumbChef John Memering has created a six course tasting menu along with wine and cocktail pairings. The menu will feature lots of pork, of course. But also something new— the Shinsato’s are offering locally grown rabbit!

The six-course, prix fixe tasting menu is priced at $70, or $100 with wine and cocktail pairings for each course. Items on the  menu can also be ordered ala carte.

There are two seatings for the evening, one at 5:30 and 7:30; reservations are recommended.

Come and enjoy a sumptuous meal and gain additional perspective on how important Hawaii’s agriculture is to our island’s future.

Hale ‘Aina 2014: CACTUS Recognized in Best Mexican Restaurant Category

Hale 'Aina 2014 Award LogoWow, what a pleasant surprise!

We at CACTUS are pleased to be recognized by Honolulu Magazine’s readers in the 2014 Hale ‘Aina Best Restaurant Awards with the top write-in votes in the Best Mexican Restaurant category. Our thanks go out to those who shouted out CACTUS Restaurant as their favorite; we are honored!

O’ahu Fresh Now Delivers to Kailua at CACTUS!

Oahu Fresh LogoAloha O’ahu Fresh members! We have exciting news to announce:  we’re expanding to Kailua!  We know there is a lot of interest in the Kailua area for a local produce delivery service and we have partnered with CACTUS restaurant, known for using plenty of locally grown produce on their menu.  

With plenty of parking and seating inside and outside, CACTUS is a wonderful place to stop to pick up your bag of locally grown produce and have a pupu and cocktail before you head home!  O’ahu Fresh produce bag delivery service to CACTUS will begin Thursday November 14.  Bags will be available for pick on Thursday afternoons after 3pm.

Visit O’ahu Fresh to sign up and choose the Cactus Restaurant drop off option if you would like to pick your bag up in Kailua.

Oct. 31-Nov. 3: Dia de los Muertos Celebration


Catrinas, one of the most popular figures of the Day of the Dead celebrations at Mexico. Courtesy Wikiamedia Commons

Join us for CACTUS’ first annual Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead celebration. This is a joyous celebration of loved ones lost, but more so a celebration of ohana, food and libations.

Starting Thursday, October 31st through Sunday, November 3rd, we will celebrate this holiday along with Mexico, Peru and many cities on the mainland. Dia de los Muertos is deeply rooted in the Pre-Columbian cultures of the Azetcs and the Mayans which inhabited what is now present day Mexico. Today it is celebrated throughout Central and South America.

Traditional specialties will be featured, such as Pan de Muerto, Calabaza en Tacha, arrays of handmade tamales. We will also be showcasing many of the styles of cuisines of Mexico from street food to regional specialties.

CACTUS will also be featuring bebidas and libations from Mexico, including hand crafted tequilas, agua frescas, Coca-Cola (Hecho en Mexico), and Jaritos Sodas. We will be receiving a special shipment of Mexican confections and candies for the keiki or the young at heart.

Learn more:

Sept 19: Next Farmer’s Dinner with Hawaiian Fresh Farms

Hawaiian Fresh Farms

We invite you to join us for the next CACTUS Farmer’s Dinner Series installment with Hawaiian Fresh Farms, Thursday September 19, 2013.

Chef and owner John Memering will create a menu featuring ingredients from several north shore farms operated by Hawaiian Fresh Farms and founder Tristan Reynolds.

The six course tasting menu is priced at $70, or $100 with wine and cocktail pairings for each course. All items featured on the tasting menu will also be available a la carte. View the menu…

Some highlights of the evening will include “talk story” sessions with Tristan, where he will share insights about his crops and livestock, as well as some of the traditional and contemporary farming techniques and strategies he uses.

Please join us for an incredible meal and gain additional perspective on how important Hawaii’s agriculture is to our island’s future.

Seating will begin at 6 PM and tables are available throughout the evening by reservation only. Call (808) 261-1000 to secure your spot!.

Aug. 16-19: Explore the Flavors of Argentina

José de San Martín Celebration

José de San MartínJoin us August 16-19 as we celebrate José de San Martín, the great liberator of Argentina. We will be celebrating the cuisines, culture, history, libations and wines of Argentina all weekend long. From Buenos Aires to Mendoza, Cactus will be celebrating everything Argentina.

We’ll have lots of local grass-fed beef, prepared in the traditional Parrilla, “big bellied” Argentine empanadas, house made Chorizo de Argentina, and lots of local seafood prepared with Argentina in mind. We will also be featuring lots of Argentine wines by the glass and bottle, as well as traditional handcrafted cocktails. Perhaps a little Tango as well!

Call now to reserve your spot.

May 17: Chef John Creates Menu for Maui Brew Fest Beer Dinner

Maui Brew Fest Beer Dinner Menu

Maui Brew Fest Beer Dinner Menu

This year’s Maui Brew Fest Beer Dinner includes the cuisine of the New Americas, created by CACTUS Kailua’s very own Chef-Owner John Memering. The special menu features Chef John’s selections, paired with specialty craft beers from Maui Brewing Company. The dishes and the craft beers feature locally-sourced ingredients.

The event takes place Friday, May 17 from 6-9 PM at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center in the Morgado Hall and Lanai. Proceeds benefit the Maui Arts & Cultural Center’s art, educational and cultural programs. Hope you can join us for this exciting event.