By Kim B
The U.S. military Okuma Beach recreation area located far north in Okinawa's Kunigami Village is a great place for a daytime visit or a multi-day vacation. It can be exhausting, however, while enjoying the nine-hole Habu Links golf course, miniature golf, tennis, basketball, go-kart rides, batting cages, playgrounds, camping, scuba diving, and beach activities. During our very busy three day stay over the holidays my family and I refueled a few times at the Surfside Restaurant located on the waterfront at Okuma.
Even though the restaurant is the only choice for dining out while on the military recreation facility - other than driving off base to Kunigami Village - we found a lot to like about the restaurant run by Kadena Air Base's morale, welfare and recreation entity. The seating in the Surfside's spacious dining room is furnished and decorated in a subtropical island motif. Subtle Okinawan colors along the walls, sturdy faux wicker inspired chairs, colorful place mats, and a few photos of Okinawa along the walls help preserve the festive mood that spills over from the resort-like activities just outside the restaurant.
The menu changes depending on the time of day. Gravy with biscuits, three omelet platters, pancakes or waffles, and cereals are on the menu during the morning time; sometimes the weekend mornings alternatively feature a buffet breakfast bar. Lunch features sandwiches, burgers, soups, salads, Okinawa favorites like soba and taco rice, and a few chicken and fish selections. The mid afternoon from 14:00 ~ 17:00 the Surfside only serves a few items such as hamburgers, cheeseburgers, hot dogs, grilled cheese, chicken nuggets - all with fries or vegetable sticks - or chef salads. The real fun begins during the dinner meal service.
Selections greatly expand for evening meals. A full line of appetizers including calamari and shrimp cocktails becomes available. The Surfside outdoor pizza oven is fired up for delicious hand made hand-tossed pies. Seafood, steaks and specialty chicken and Okinawan favorites round out the menu. The full Surfside menus with prices plus additional information on the restaurant and the U.S. military Okuma Beach resort can be found on its website.
My family and I tried the oven baked Surfside Special pizza, a large size combination style pizza topped with four meats and four vegetables, enjoyed the large portion ribeye steak, tried the Okuma's Special Blend Curry which comes with chicken cutlet and rice, as well as a variety of the burgers, the hotdog, Alaskan pollack and Chicken Bara Bara. The food was delicious with no complaints from our party. Just about everything came with a few side dishes as well as a drink; the kids meals came with a scoop of ice cream. The service was quick and courteous but the staff wasn't particularly skilled in the English language - not that it became a problem during our visits. A 10% discount is available if anyone in the party happens to be a U.S. Air Force Club member.
The Surfside Restaurant is located on the U.S. military Okuma Beach recreation Area which is next to the Japan Airlines Okuma Resort in Kunigami Village just west of Route 58. Admission is only available to eligible U.S. military and civilian identification card holders, military retirees, and their guests. The restaurant is open for breakfast daily from 07:30 ~ 10:00, lunch from 11:00 ~ 14:00, limited to sandwiches or chef salads between 14:00 ~ 15:00, and for dinner from 17:00 ~ 20:30 (21:00 on Friday and Saturday, as well as Sundays if Monday is an American holiday. Dollars, yen, MasterCard and Visa are accepted.
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