Thursday, January 12, 2023

Island Kine Grinds (Aloha Island Grille) - Restaurant Impossible Update

On this week's episode of Restaurant: Impossible, Robert Irvine and his crew are in Nampa, Idaho to makeover Island Kine Grinds. Island Kine Grinds is a Hawaiian restaurant owned by married couple Renus and Ludi .  The restaurant has them on the brink of bankruptcy and it is also impacting Renus' health.  With Renus unable to help Ludi much around the restaurant, it has her feeling overwhelmed and unable to manage the restaurant.  Robert will need to help Renus turn things around to help his health, marriage and restaurant.

As I normally do with Restaurant: Impossible episodes, I searched around the Internet to read stories, comments and reviews about Island Kine Grinds to get an idea of how the restaurant is doing since Robert Irvine visited, and here is what I found (note - all reviews are post Restaurant: Impossible):

Positive Reviews:
  • "We were excited to check it out since Restaurant Impossible came earlier this week and it did not disappoint! Yes, the menu is different for now so we tried several new things amongst the table.....The wait staff was busy but smiling and friendly the whole time, in spite of some being frustrated at the new menu. Go by for a little adventure and try something new! We will definitely be back!"

Negative Reviews:
  • "This review is post remodel. I was excited to hear about the remodel. However the food was remodeled as well. I had the Kalua Pork Sandwich. To be honest, it tasted generic pulled pork. My friend got the chicken, and he said his "mac salad" wasn't very good. After coming back from a trip to Hawaii I was glad to see a more authentic Hawaiian restaurant. It now feels like a lazy attempt at Hawaiian food."
  • "Easiestly the worst Hawaiian food I've ever had. We are from Hawaii and couldn't finish what we ordered."
  • "My hula sister and I decided to stop here for lunch. I got the fried chicken with Mac salad. I was expecting an actual piece of fried chicken, but instead got strips of chicken. It lacked flavor and was bland. The mac salad did not use macaroni noodles, but with another type of noodle. This was also very bland. I would not come here again."
  • "Apparently Robert Irvine bought this place and re-created the Menu...its sad the food was better last year!!! And how are you not Serving rice with this plates WTF...his mac salad is not right at all.. This restaurant was on the food networks restaurant impossible show and he ruined it. Hawaii food staples sides is rice and mac salad made with actual Is macaroni noodles...not what the hell Robert's take on it...horrible..I dont know how many times this guy has been to Hawaii for have no idea what the culture and background of the island food is like! Original menu was better!! If you think the show helped this place it didn't the prices for the amount of food is horrible..serve the damn rice it helps fill people up and its cheap."
*Reviews from Yelp, Google

Other News and Links:
  • The Restaurant Impossible makeover for Island Kine Grinds happened in May 2022.
  • During the makeover Island Kine Grinds was renamed to Aloha Island Grille.
  • Here is the Island Kine Grinds Facebook page which hasn't been updated
  • Here are the reviews for Island Kine Grinds/Aloha Island Grille from Yelp, TripAdvisor, and Google.
  • Reviews around about September 2022 start talking about new ownership at Aloha Island Grille.  So it seems as if Renus and Ludi no longer own the restaurant.
    • The reviews for Aloha Island Grill are not that great since the ownership change and exist at the same Yelp and Google links above.


During the Restaurant Impossible makeover, Island Kine Grinds was renamed to Aloha Island Grille.  The reviews after the makeover were not that great and people didn't like the food or new menu.  Based on reviews, it seems that around September 2022 (about 3 months after the makeover), Aloha Island Grille is under new ownership.  They have kept the name and still serve Hawaiian food, but the reviews haven't improved much.  This restaurant will be marked as 'Sold' on the Restaurant Impossible Updates page once confirming there are new owners.

*Visit Our Restaurant Impossible Update Page to see all Restaurant: Impossible updates, and which restaurants are open, closed, or have been sold. Also Follow Us on Twitter

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