An outdoor patio, wood-fired oven and a menu featuring elements of Hawaiian cuisine are in-store for a new restaurant set to open in Savage next year.

An ongoing renovation is transforming the former Perkins into Pau Hana restaurant, with an opening date expected late spring.

Chef and restaurant owner Chris Ikeda opened Lake & Irving restaurant in Minneapolis in 2013, but said this summer Pau Hana is a new concept with the same style of service.

A Lake & Irving take-out menu continues to operate from the Savage restaurant ahead of Pau Hana’s official opening.

“I’m a big fan of Lake & Irving so I’m excited for this to open as well,” Savage Planning Commission Chairwoman Stacy Crakes said before the commission voted unanimously Dec. 10 to approve the restaurant’s conditional use permit and site plan.

Under plans submitted to the city for approval, seven parking stalls will be removed from the restaurant’s parking lot for the creation of a 69-seat outdoor patio.

Steve Ikeda — Chris Ikeda’s father — originally built and ran the Perkins restaurant in Savage. Two years ago, when Perkins went through bankruptcy, he took the operations back and terminated the franchise agreement with plans for his son to create something new.

While the menu will highlight Hawaiian cuisine, it’ll also offer foods that’ve become increasingly popular during the pandemic, such as pizza, to be made in the restaurant’s Italian-made, wood-fired oven.

Chris Ikeda attended The Culinary Institute of America in New York, and later moved to Hawaii and began an apprenticeship with world-renowned chef Alan Wong at the Four Seasons Hualalai Resort.

Wong is a co-inventor of Hawaiian regional cuisine, which is best known for — but not limited to — its use of fresh island produce, tropical fruits and seafood.

“There’s really no bounds with that cuisine, it’s literally a melting pot of cultures,” Chris Ikeda said in an interview this summer.

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