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Yamaguchi’s new concept to debut at Kauai tavern

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Chef and restaurateur Roy Yamaguchi will open a new restaurant later this month in Princeville, Kauai, at the Prince Golf Course.

There are more than 30 Roy’s restaurants around the world, but this will not be branded as such.

The Tavern at Princeville was borne of Yamaguchi’s memories of his Grandpa Henry’s tavern in Wailuku, Maui, opened in the 1940s, according to the back story he prepared for the restaurant menu.

"Grandpa used to cook for the family when we visited him on Maui," he wrote. "Many of the dishes I ate growing up were dishes that my father would prepare based on his experiences working in Grandpa’s tavern." The tavern was a gathering place for the community where food was sourced from local farmers and fishermen, he said, and the new restaurant will have its own garden.

"The Tavern at Princeville is designed to be a place that visitors and residents alike can gather and enjoy a casual evening of good food and drinks," Rainer Kumbroch, president of Roy’s restaurants in Hawaii, said in a statement.

The parent company, Hawaiian Island Taverns LLC, lists Yamaguchi as its sole officer and has so far registered only The Tavern at Princeville by Roy Yamaguchi as a trade name. However, one might note that the word "tavern" appears in plural form in the parent company name.

The anticipated soft-opening date is Sept. 23, with a grand opening to be announced in October.

NEW AM STATION FOR MAUI

A new radio station will be built on Maui at 740 on the AM dial, now that California-based IHR Educational Broadcasting, which does business as Immaculate Heart Radio, has been awarded a construction permit by the Federal Communications Commission.

The listener-supported company has three years to get the station on the air, but IHR President Douglas Sherman believes it can do it within a year. It will share a tower with another local broadcaster and computer modeling shows its signal should "cover all of Maui … parts of Honolulu and parts of the Big Island," on the Kona side. "Five thousand watts on 740 is a good signal," he said.

IHR applied for the rare AM station allocation years ago and the application was finally granted Aug. 31.

The nonprofit broadcaster has 24 stations and translators in five western states, "but with every new station, first we start with getting the permission from the local bishop to make sure this is something he’d like to see happen," he said.

Christian radio is prevalent on the radio dial around Hawaii, but IHR is Catholic-focused. The permit now granted, Sherman will reconnect with Honolulu Diocese Bishop Larry Silva to see whether and how he would like to use the daily hour IHR will provide for local programming. In San Francisco, Sacramento, Calif., New Mexico and Salt Lake City, local bishops "have taken up our offer to develop a local show so that the bishops can be in more direct contact with the people."

For the other 23 hours a day, "we create some programming and primarily, we pick up the best in Catholic programming from around the country and around the world," including some from Vatican Radio, said the Maui homeowner.

Sherman and his wife built a second home in Kihei 33 years ago "and coincidentally, that’s the city of license for the permit," he said.

ON THE NET: IHRADIO.ORG

Erika Engle is a reporter with the Star-Advertiser. Reach her by e-mail at erika@staradvertiser.com.

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