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Oct 27, 2011 12:43 AM

Big Island local foods

We're coming to the Big Island in 10 days, staying at the Four Seasons. We may well not do a lot of eating off property, so I'm not looking for specific restaurant suggestions, but no matter where we eat, what are some local ingredients and dishes that we should look for?

I've already got on my list:
Ohelo berry jam
poha berry jam
spam musubi (sushi)
kiawe honey (do I remember this from a previous visit?)
lilikoi jam (other lilikoi products, like honey?)
shave ice

What else is unique and great? We'll try pretty much anything (once....)!

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  1. I know you're not looking for restaurant suggestions, but you can't get more local than the fresh fish or pork chops at the Manago Hotel in Captain Cook. Sorry, I couldn't help myself.

    1 Reply
    1. re: curiousgeo

      You're forgiven! (I am keeping a list of local restaurants, just in case!)

    2. We like to check out the Homesteader's market on Saturday up in Waimea town.
      They have a variety of home grown and homemade products, They also have some wonderful food stalls that serve up some very tasty local dishes.
      There are baked goods. We always try and pick-up some lilikoi shortbread from one vendor.....Jane's..I think it .....sells out fast.
      For your situation at the 4S ......some products wouldn't be suitable...but we have a our food basket would differ a bit.
      Palani French Bakers are there and have a Brioche loaf that is off the charts....toasted with lilikoi is spectacular. I take a loaf home as well.
      As wonderful as the dining options at Hualalai are...and unless you are only there for a few nights....i would suspect you may well want to venture away from the resort for a few meals.
      We like Manago....feels like you've stepped onto a 1950's movie set..
      But my rec for killer Pizza is nearby Manago in Captain Cook.....Patz Pies. Out of this world NY style pizza . fresh ingredients, salads etc. They just recently moved locations into what used to be "paparoni's" We virtually head straight there from the airport.
      Mike's BBQ serves up some wonderful options at the Kona International marketplace.
      Kona coast Macadamia Nut factory has a small tour and sells chocolate covered macadamia bark....also in coffee country area.
      Green well farms is a good little tour in the area (coffee)

      2 Replies
      1. re: easily amused

        The market sounds great, but it looks like it's Saturday morning only, and we're there Sunday afternoon through Friday morning. Any other good markets during that time period?

        1. re: waldrons

          Oh, it's a shame your visit won't encompass a Saturday on island....many of the popular markets have Saturday as their prime day. There are other options though.

          The Anna Ranch market and the Waikoloa Beach King's Shops Wednesday markets may work for you. They are relatively new to the Big Island market and continue to add product vendors.

      2. If you get to Hilo, pick up some really special mochi and manju at Two Ladies Kitchen. Call ahead - they run out!