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hi chows! please help me with recs for restaurants in oahu.. plan to try to go all over the island so all recs are appreciated! from cheap to fine dining looking for the best!
things i am interested in are and not limited to;
loco moco
farmers market


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  1. Leonards Bakery (Malasadas)
    933 Kapahulu Ave
    Honolulu, HI 96816

    Waiola Shave Ice
    Location #1
    Address: 2135 Waiola Ave, Honolulu
    Phone: 808-949-2269

    Location #2
    Address: Kapahulu Blvd, Honolulu
    (same street as Leonards Bakery & 2 blocks from Rainbow Grill)

    RAINBOW DRIVE-IN (Plate lunches & burgers)
    3308 Kanaina Avenue Honolulu

    Matsumoto Shave Ice
    Address: 66-087 Kamehameha Hwy., Haleiwa, Hawaii (North Shore)
    Phone: 808-637-

    2 Replies
      1. Poke - Tamashiro's Fish Market or Tanioka's.
        Breakfast - Liliha Bakery, Anna Miller's or Boots and Kimo's.
        Dessert - Cafe Laufer or Bubbie's Ice Cream.
        Luau - No commercial luau, but good Hawaiian food can be found at Helena's, Ono Hawaiian Food and Young's Fish Market (eat in or take-out).

        3 Replies
          1. re: monku

            ...and just about everything else! We had coconut cream- filled malasadas when we visited that were just incredible.

          2. Malasadas: Yes, Leonard's Bakery [take out] in Kapahulu.
            Hawaiian Food: Yes, Ono Hawaiian in Kapahulu [not upscale].
            Mall places: Kakaako Kitchen [take out with seating outside] at Ward Center and The Pineapple Room in Macy's at Ala Moana Center [upscale].
            Outdoors: Hau Tree Lanai [upscale] at the south end of Kapiolani Park.
            Other: Hiroshi Eurasian Tapas [fusion, upscale] in Restaurant Row, 500 Ala Moana Blvd.

            All of these are in Honolulu, not too far from Waikiki.

            1. A hole in the wall kind of place near the airport (near Nimitz Highway)is Ethels Grill. (breakfast or lunch open 6am-2pm)

              Huge portions. It is literally a hole in the wall...looked like it was the office of an old motel. But Ethel the owner is a fantastic host and her husband does the cooking in the back. Lots of fish specials too.

              Great ramen or lunch plates. I went there and for $5.50 you get a beverage of iced tea,miso soup, salad w/fantastic home made dressing, sashimi appetizer and your entree(huge).


              Review and some pictures:

              3 Replies
              1. re: monku

                Eh monku, Ethel's is crowded enough already at lunch time.

                1. re: curiousgeo

                  Believe me...I go before the lunch rush. I love the place. Last time we were there my daughter had the oxtail ramen and it was the biggest bowl of ramen I'd ever seen. Ethel's great...she gave my daughter a box of chocolate covered macadamia nuts when we left.

                  1. re: monku

                    I usually get the mahimahi plate and I also like the chicken katsu donburi. My co-worker swears by her Okinawan pigs feet soup.

              2. Sam Choy has several restaurants on the island. He's like the Emeril of Hawaii.


                1. Lunch - Mariposa @ Neiman's; dinner is not as interesting especially as there is no view
                  at night. However if you go on Friday night you can see the fireworks quite well.

                  Fish and other items - Nico's Pier 38, right on the waterfront across the fish auction house.
                  The furikake ahi is always good and the daily specials are quite special. They email their
                  daily specials from their website.

                  Assagio - Kailua. I know there are other locations but I only have been to this one. Both at
                  lunch (lots of martini drinkers during the day!), large portions, great fish/seafood items and
                  of course the Italian items you might expect - done quite well. They have a delicious Caesar
                  salad prepared tableside that is always a winner.

                  Morning Brew - breakfast/coffee/lunch - Kailua Marketplace (by Times Supermarket). Fabulous locally roasted coffee, hot chocoate, pastries and a full menu of breakfast items.
                  They have a really good bagel selection , the lox item is terrific. Cozy little place really
                  friendly people.

                  Sumo Ramen (Kaneohe Bay Shopping Center by Safeway and I think Pearl Highlands) - anyway really good ramen, chicken katsu curry, gyoza and such. Their Maebo tofu noodle
                  is amazing, lots of heat and creamy tofu. It is a nice little stop enroute back from the North
                  Shore or on the way. Carry out from there is always good.

                  town - Waialae Ave. Kaimuki - lovely little place! B/L/D. Dinnertime is quite loud so go early
                  if that is a problem for you. Lunch is a more mellow time. Delicious cocktail menu with freshly made herb floats, juices and that sort of thing makes for memorable libation. Their
                  burger is delicious, freshly ground NS cattle co. beef, great with added bacon and gorgonzola, their fries are the best with little deep fried herbs sprinkled atop. The cod
                  fritters and light, crisp and served with a malt vinegar aioli, their mussels are served
                  with a broth that just doesn't quite with flavor and little tiny round pasta that are positively
                  miniscule but bursting with flavor. GO! GO! GO! to town!

                  Roy's - the original Flagship in Hawaii Kai, great food, great view of Maunalua Bay if you
                  go early. Kid friendly if that is applicable and since it can get loud in there you don't even
                  notice if there are any in there anyway.

                  Teddy's Bigger Burger - Kailua and other locations. Another gem for burgers and great
                  fries, they serve them on a fluffy potato bun with this great sauce. Lots of different combinations offered.

                  Agree with Pineapple Room, Hiroshi Eurasion Tapas, Ono Hawaiian, and Leonard's. Kakaako
                  Kitchen must have gotten better, I used to eat there (or try to) for lunch a few times a week
                  when I was working in the area and the orders were always wrong or cooked wrong (like
                  underdone chicken for example on chicken fried chicken w/bacon gravy on Wednesdays).

                  KCC Farmer's Market on Saturday - you can get coffee, pastry, kalua pork, burgers and
                  sausages (andouille or portuguese) on a bun or loco moco from NS Cattle Co., there is a
                  great booth from Maui selling lots of interesting things and some prepared foods. Fried
                  Green tomatoes and onion rings are always popular, it's fun to go to. You might even
                  see the chef/owner of town there buying armloads of produce from everyone.

                  Some of my ideas are from the Windward side from which I try to never venture far from....
                  However I do get out every now and then and actually leave my house so that's a bit of
                  what I could come up with for now. Hope you have a great trip!

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: manomin

                    Assagios has locations in Hawai'i Kai and the Ala Moana Shopping Center and (not sure if this one is still open) Mililani. The linguine puttanesca (with or without chicken) is good.

                    Foodland supermarkets fish counter has kimchi shrimp that I find addictive, $5.99 a pound (last year, anyway).

                    If you like Korean cooked at your table, look up Seoul Yakiniku on King @ Kalakaua (or Kalakaua @ King). Get the steak pieces dinner.

                    Sorabol for 24 hour Korean, their iron bowl soups are great.

                    1. re: MobyRichard

                      If I recall the Foodland at Ala Moana has a great selection of poke dishes.

                  2. Kaka'ako Kitchen is not to be missed. Daiei superstore is great for a midnight snack...and the poke was super cheap but fresh.

                    1. try the grass skirt grill right in the heart of haleiwa town on the north shore. it is located at 66-214 kam hwy. fresh fish everyday. very casual, but great food.

                      1. Town - without a doubt my favorite dinner in Honolulu. Go for the Ahi appetizer, delicious gnocchi, great taste combinations.

                        You Hungry - Fav plate lunch, right across the street from the convention center

                        Diamond Head Grill - Favorite Poke, also try the Plantation Iced Tea from the counter outside and anything else there.