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Lunch at Compadres

The Best Damn Enchiladas You’ve Ever Eaten, Period!

No, I didn’t proclaim those were the best damned enchiladas you or I have ever had. That’s actually what they’re titled on the menu. In the spirit of our wonderful previous experience at Los Chapparos, the crave for Mexican cuisine continues – this time of the “Tex” variety – over at Compadres in Ward Center.

Compadres Bar & Grill has been at Ward in the same location for as far back as I can remember. This place often bustles in the evening with locals for pauhana cocktails. It has a festive, roomy, open air ambiance, including an outdoor terrace and a view overlooking Ala Moana Beach Park.

Our lunch hour visit was on a Thursday. With that, there was a special of half-prices on all Enchilada menu items, which if I remember correctly by the sign, was effective Tuesday thru Thursday from 10am to 4pm.

With that, I ordered what they tout as pictured above, “The Best Damn Enchilada You’ve Ever Eaten, Period!”. A platter of two enchiladas – grilled fajita-marinated chicken breast, sauteed mushrooms, roasted red peppers, black olives, green onions, and cojita cheese folded in fresh corn tortillas and topped with fire-roasted fresh tomato salsa and guacamole. Served with fiesta rice, our “best outside of Mexico” refried beans and Compadres slaw. $16.95 menu price, but on special it was just $8.48.

Cross-cut of the “Best Damn Enchilada”
Like most Mexican dishes (in my opinion), the various components of the entire dish often become homogenized into one, but if I had to give a flavor profile of this “Best Damn Enchilada”, I’d say it reminded me of a “Mexicanized Pastele”. Mostly likely because of the pronounced Olive flavor. The red sauce had a nice tang and spice to it and complimented the enchilada well. The slaw was pretty good. The fiesta rice and refried beans were standard fare. Not bad, not great, but it worked. At half price, I certainly agreed to the dish. Not sure I’d feel the same if I had paid the full price.

Diner “number 2” ordered Enchilada Dela Casa…

Enchilada Dela Casa

The “dos” version includes 2 tortillas, stuffed with shredded beef and (in this case, the other one was chicken), topped with a mixture of marinated vegetables and olives, with cheese melted over and smothered in a mild red sauce. $15.50 menu, half price special $7.75. While perhaps not ready to do the salsa in celebration of how good it was, he was satisfied with the dish.

Diners “number 3 and 4” ordered the Chimichanga…


A deep fried burrito – your choice of shredded beef or fresh cooked chicken, refried beans, then topped with tomatillo guacamole and ancho chile sauces.
Served with fiesta rice and Mexican salad. $12.95 menu price (no special on this item).

Above you can see the Chimichanga’s shredded beef. Diners #3 & 4 were satisfied. Enough that they both finished their entire plate. So that says it was good. Especially being that they’re two rather petite young ladies! You go girls! They really loved that guac’ and ancho chili sauces. Sure looks great. I should’ve asked them for a bite so I could describe exactly how they tasted. Maybe next time.

Diner “number 3”, the birthday girl ordered the Vegetarian Enchilada…

Vegetarian Enchilada (sorry about the blurry picture)

A fresh spinach tortilla filled with fresh seasonal vegetables, guacamole, Monterey Jack cheese, and cilantro, covered with green sauce and topped with salsa fresca. $11.75 menu price, $5.85 half off special. Birthday girl was happy. She finished the entire dish.

The “Mexican” component of the green salad provided with each entree was this bottle of salsa-like dressing (I don’t know the actual name of it)…

There was so much sauce already provided on each dish, that nobody used the dressing on their salad.

Because he had just had Mexican the night before, Diner “number 5” opted out of the theme and ordered the All American Burger…

All American Burger

Eight-ounces of fresh ground beef, broiled to order, and garnished with a tomato slice, Bermuda onion, and lettuce. $10.95 menu price. He said the grilled patty itself was juicy and flavorful. His only complaint was the tiny “cheap” bun they used, kinda’ like a half-ton 4×4 truck rolling on spare tires. lol. For over $10 a burger, they really need to improve on their bun selection. Those thick-cut fries were excellent. Tender inside, crispy outside. I tried a few.

As with most Mexican restaurants, complimentary bottomless salsa and tortilla chips were provided immediately upon seating…

Everyone really loved the salsa and chips here. So much that we almost ate too much before our meal. Aren’t we all guilty of doing that? Admit it! lol The salsa had nice body to it, with a good-size dice of the tomatoes and just the right viscosity; not watery, not too thick. Just enough to adhere to the tortilla. Pepper level was mild-medium hot. The fresh tortilla chips were thick and extra crispy.

That was just nipping the bud of what’s available at Compadres. Click on this link to their view the entire (PDF) menu.

Portions were perfectly suited to our lunchtime appetite. Enough that everyone was able to mostly finish their plate without feeling underfed or overstuffed. We were overall well satisfied with the food and quick, attentive service.

Free parking is conveniently located in the structure located just steps away from the front door.

Compadres Bar & Grill

1200 Ala Moana Boulevard Honolulu, HI 96814
Phone:(808) 591-8307, FAX: (808) 593-2901

Tasty Island Rating:


5 thoughts on “Lunch at Compadres

  • June 24, 2007 at 10:59 pm

    I miss the free tortilla chips and salsa! In Japan, you have to pay to have them.

  • June 24, 2007 at 11:27 pm

    Campadres… feh. I’ve had better (far, far better) in California, and California can’t hold a candle to Texas or New Mexico.

    Stiil, its nearly the best on-island, but thats like comparing the best mexican food you’ve ever had on an airplane, or in a hospital.

  • June 25, 2007 at 8:49 am

    ¡El alimento era autorización pero el precio la hizo agradable!

    Iría ciertamente detrás para el almuerzo otra vez.

    Diner “number 2”
    Viva Mexico!

  • July 3, 2007 at 3:32 am

    You guys are killing me with these food pictures! You’ve got to tell me what kind of camera you’re using! Thanks for sharing and for making me think I haven’t eaten in weeks! I like the musubi rating system by the way.


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