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Southern Homestyle Cuisine that Captures The Definition

By Jeremy Neal Photos by Sean Newsome

The name says it all! When I go to a restaurant that dares to brand itself with a name such as “soul,” there’s certain qualities that I automatically expect it to live

up to. It can’t just be simple food that tastes good, it has to be something that reaches into the inner depths of my being, my heart, my soul, and forces me to

understand why this place carries this name. If you haven’t been to Soul, located at 3040 Wailae Ave., you need to go, because this place has definitely got it.

When you first walk up and view the menu, you get a sense of the vibe that is offered here. Menu items such as Sweet Potato Pancakes, Chicken and Waffles,

Fried Catfish, and Biscuits and Gravy instantly direct you to the core of southern cuisine from South Carolina where the parents of Chef Sean Priester inspired

his cooking. Integrating the technique and flavor of southern cuisine with the passion and appreciation of the Aloha spirit is what has caused this restaurant

to thrive. The knowledge of “soul” cooking is only paralleled by the soulful ambiance provided once you enter the doors. With an array of classics playing in the

background like Al Green, Barry White, and Aretha Franklin, you can’t help but be transported to another place and time. Pair that with the classic albums lining

the walls, and Soul Train playing on the television, and you’ve got the recipe for a perfect “soulful” experience.

Chef Sean Priester has seemingly succeeded in embodying the spirit of his restaurant within the staff, and the overall feel that you get once you cross the threshold.

Being that he himself has had an extensive career in the restaurant industry before opening Soul a little over a year ago, he has successfully been able to

take the best aspects of food, culture and respect, and bring them inside the walls and on every plate served. When asked why he does what he does, he simply

replied, “we’re just here to make people feel good.” Well… they’re definitely accomplishing their goal!

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