Archive for the 'Parties' Category

Hilo’s KWXX Ho’olaulea 2007

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2007

It wasn’t sleepy Hilo Town this past Saturday.

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The rain was on schedule…

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John Cruz…
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Donna’s Smokin BBQ Shack…
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Baby Back Ribs, 5-Meat Chili, Mac Salad, Rice ($10)

Juicy juicy, tasty and slightly tangy. Great ribs! Chili was really good too — very thick and hearty with a slight kick. I need to check Donna’s Smokin BBQ Shack later. It is located in the Keaau Village Market.

13th Annual Ho’olaule’a

Sunday, October 1st, 2006

13th Annual Hoolaulea

Hilo town was rockin’ with the best Hawaiian music and sooo much food! It’s amazing how much people gather for this… I’m sure this is the largest event every year on the Big Island. See my last post for an aerial shot from last year. It felt like this year was even huger!

Last year, I had a sad experience: I was so indecisive about what to eat that I ended getting a generic BBQ chicken plate, and after, I had a very empty feeling deep down inside. This year, my strategy changed: walk around and just try a little bit of everything… plus, now that I have a wonderful wife, it’s easy to share portions… quality not quantity, right?

So here is our Ho’olaule’a food adventures!

First, we started off with some pupus.

Poke Your Way Truck Poke Your Way

1/4lb poke ($3.00) from Poke Your Way. What was really cool is that after you order your poke, you can add on what you like to your own poke from a nice tray of condiments (no additional cost). We added in some ogo seaweed, inamona (kukui nuts), green onions, and a chili pepper (this guy is hot!). The ahi was very fresh and nicely seasoned with crunchy hawaiian salt. It was good poke… melt in da mouth kine!

Next, we moved on to Nori’s tent for a bowl of…

Nori’s Saimin Nori’s Sign

Saimin! ($3.00) Man, Nori’s makes a really good bowl of saimin. Their noodles are so fresh tasting — they have a nice chewy texture to them. Their broth is also very flavorful and rich.

Ono Hawaiian Food Lau Lau

How about some lau lau ($4.00)? This was from Ka ‘Uhane Hemolele Ka Malamalama Church… some long da church name. These guys have a lunch wagon right off bayfront. I always wondered how their food is. So how was the lau lau? ONO BRAH! Everything was so moist and there was a nice piece of fat (very important). Nice size too… and good balance of luau leaf and pork. Recommended.

Pizza Hawaii Pizza

Pizza Hawaii had a stand, but I didn’t get to take a photo. We ordered a slice of pepperoni pizza ($4.00), and it was so yummy! I love thin crust pizzas and this one was very thin crust NY style. The crust at the end had a nice bubbly crust too. Excellent… best in Hilo maybe?

We wanted to get some malasadas from that place in Papaikou called Baker Tom’s since I’ve heard they have good malasadas, but they were out! :(

Baker Tom’s Malasadas

So we got some ice shave from Higa’s instead.
Higa’s Higa’s Ice Shave

Vanilla and Strawberry ($3.00). This was almost a great ice shave… the ice was very light, fine shaved, and the syrup was really tasty. But the guy pouring the syrup didn’t put enough syrup and the middle was just ice.

Ok, we are pretty satisfied.

We didn’t have room to try Aunty Peaches “Onolicious Poi Balls”. There was a huge line for this.

Poi Balls

That’s ok. We were so happy that we got to try a lot of different Hilo foods all in one place. So much better than just a BBQ chicken plate lunch!

Aerial shot of food lines

This is how packed it gets where the food is.

Oh yeah, and the music was awesome!

Kapena Kapena Kapena Ho’onua

Kapena and Ho’onua! They were both really fun.

Can’t wait for next year!

13th Annual Ho’olaule’a Tonight!

Saturday, September 30th, 2006

It’s tonight! I can’t wait to go… for the food.. err… music!

This is a shot from last year, courtesy of KWXX. Sleepy Hilo Town turned into a huge block party!
Last year's Hoolaulea

Who else is going? I’ll post about it later. :)

Hilo Yacht Club

Thursday, December 8th, 2005

The entire office at work was treated to a nice Christmas luncheon at the Hilo Yacht Club, a beautiful recreational club sitting on the beach (Reed’s Bay).

View Another View Inside

This is an exclusive recreational club kept alive by its members who pay an initial and monthly fee which varies depending on your age and living location. Members can use all of their facilities as well as their banquet rooms for special events. So is it worth joining here for the food?

I started with the French Onion soup with Gruyere Cheese ($4.50)

French Onion Soup

Sadly, this soup tasted more like beef broth with soggy bread and onions. The onions still had a small crunch to them, not caramelized at all, which onions in a proper french onion soup should be. Even the crust of the bread was soggy, and the bread was not even good bread. French onion soups need bread that can hold up to the soup and stay crusty, me thinks!

Rib Eye Steak (medium rare) with mushrooms & onions ($14.95)

Rib Eye Steak

The steak tasted good and was well seasoned, but was unevenly cooked and was a bit tough considering it was a rib-eye. Half of the steak was thin and other half was thicker, making one side well-done and the other a medium. I wish they cut it thick instead of thin and large. Vegetables were good and buttery though.

Chocolate Mousse with Strawberries

Chocolate Mousse

I think this was the best thing that came out of the kitchen so far. The mousse was smooth, chocolaty, and not too sweet. The strawberries were ripe and sweet. It was a great ending to the meal.

Here are some of the other dishes ordered which I didn’t get to taste:

Lobster & Crab Salad with Fresh Fruits and Sherbet ($9.50)

Lobster and Crab Salad

Homestyle Chicken Curry ($8.95)

Chicken Curry

Mud Pie ($3.95) and Chocolate Brownies with Kona Coffee Ice Cream ($3.95)

Mud Pie Brownies

Food-wise, this club just doesn’t cut it, but they offer a lot more including an oceanview pool, three tennis courts, a black sand volleyball court, and beautiful views of the beach.

The best food on the Big Island…

Sunday, August 7th, 2005

The best food on the Big Island cannot be found in restaurants, but at local family parties.

Last night I went to an open-to-all graduation party way down in Kalapana right before the lava flow took over the road, near Kalapana’s black sand beach. It was a beautiful place. The owner of the house is a very friendly pure Hawaiian man, and he fully represented with the food!

Hundreds of people were there, with great live local bands. I didn’t even know who graduated, but everyone was welcome. The vibe and the food was wonderful. Everyone was welcome to eat. This is why I love the Big Island; parties that are open to anyone with positive energy, amazing food, and great music. There was even an Awa bar!

I so wanted to take pictures of the awesome spread, but my camera still didn’t come in yet, so I took a plate home to take a picture of with a borrowed camera (well, I would’ve took a take-home plate in any case!). There was so much food. This plate was made at almost 3am and still had trays and trays of fresh poke, opihi, poi and so much other grinds left.

Here’s da onoz!

Da Onoz!

Clockwise from top left: Poke (raw fish seasoned with Hawaiian salt, seaweed and inamona), raw a`ama crab, opihi (a Hawaiian limpet), ake (raw bull liver seasoned with alaea), small piece of kulolo (sweet taro pudding), mac salad, some kind of spicy fried rice, steamed sweet potato, pork guisantes (pork and peas), some kind of grilled fish, and kalua pig!

The poke was so fresh and tasty. The opihi was so fresh and ono. One thing I tried for the first time was the ake, which I was told was raw bull liver. I never ate any kind of raw liver before, so I was glad I was told only after I tried it, because it tasted so good! The liver had a very different rich and creamy taste/texture and it was seasoned really well. Little bits of the alaea gave a lot of crunchy salty bits. The kalua pig melted in my mouth and had a wonderful smoky flavor. Everything else was so ono too.

On the side was a sour `ulu (breadfruit) poi.

Sour Ulu Poi

This poi was delightful. I think poi is always the best a bit fermented, and this one was, which gave it a great sour taste. It was thick too. One finga kine brah! So good with da poke, opihi and crab!

For your viewing pleasure…

Ake and Opihi closeup

Broke da mout’ yea!!?? It’s good to live in Hawaii.