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Hawaiian Tropic Zone

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Clearly, Hawaiian Tropic Zone is the consummate place for dinner to keep our guys happy that Sunday night of The Big Game. (Don’t ask me which game. There’s always a game.) Amazingly, it is not because our lithe, tattooed waitress in a few wisps of polyester from Nicole Miller dips in to do our bidding so adorably. That midriff. That tattoo. Only my gal pal and I are noticeably obsessed. Their “Y” chromosome eyes are glued to the plasma screen as a kitchen runner delivers the pupu platter of our pubescent memories—really good ribs, oddments of pork, deep-fried prawns, spring rolls, skewers, and more ($41 to feed four). “You guys still working on that?” our beach bunny asks. Okay, so we gals are just guys, too. It’s not just real estate and wide-screen playmates between the plasma screens that lifts this gambit above Hooters. It’s the ambitious food, unleashed from the imagination of star chef David Burke, so much better than it needs to be. Actually, it was almost fabulous the first time we came and Burke himself was at the range. Tonight, to be cruelly frank, the gargantuan crisp fried pork shank is sadly dry. But the veal chop is splendid and the chicken is not overcooked, always a plus. Happily, our guys are so distracted by the intense last-minute football play that my pal and I get to ravish the sensational banana split before they lift a spoon. The crunchy little candies lurking in the superior hot fudge are a real Burkesonian touch.

Hawaiian Tropic Zone
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729 Seventh Ave., at 49th St.; 212-626-7312


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