Eating with Angie in Kaua’i

Eating well on vacations is a mission of mine. I research, read reviews and print lists well before I take flight or get in the car. Our November trip to […]

Eating well on vacations is a mission of mine. I research, read reviews and print lists well before I take flight or get in the car. Our November trip to Kaua’i was no exception. We had some “must go” restaurants in advance, but also jumped on a few unplanned destinations on our visit. Our iPhone travel guides helped tremendously. If we’d pass an interesting restaurant, Brian and I would race to see who could find reviews and a menu first.

Needless to say, we had some excellent meals. Here are some quick reviews should you be lucky enough to visit Kaua’i:

Cheap, Quick & Tasty
Bubba’s Hawaii: This place is just fun. Celebrity customer photos on the walls including Ozzy Osborne, a slogan that reads, “We relish your buns,” along with simply tasty burgers and hot dogs and milkshakes. Bubba’s is a great place for kids and/or when you don’t want to spend a lot of time and money. I loved the “Slopper” chili burger. We dined at both the Po’ipu and Hanalei locations.

Puka Dog: Brian and I first heard of Puka Dogs on an Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations” TV show. Just a hole-in-the-wall joint serving polish or veggie dogs sunk into a super-soft, bun-sized loaf of bread. The fun part is experimenting with the sauces. I went with the polish dog, spicy jalapeno garlic lemon sauce and mango relish. Yu-um. Don’t be afraid to go spicier…I plan to zoom it up to hot chili pepper if I get another chance.

Great Roadside Trip on way to Waimea Canyon

Island Taco: Who doesn’t want fish tacos in Hawaii? This little roadside stop on the way to Waimea Canyon serves up some excellent fish tacos…my favorite of the trip. I had the Cajun Mahi Mahi, Brian had the Seared Ahi and Joe went for Kalua Pork (not everyone loves fish). The tacos are stuffed with seasoned rice, salsa, cheese and cabbage. Sooo good. And very filling. Don’t be thinking you need three tacos. Two was too much.

Kalaheo Cafe & Coffee Company: This cafe is so good that we went twice…and we all ordered the exact same things! Trying to recreate my Feta, tomato, spinach and bacon omelette has been a fun culinary challenge since we got back. But Sam’s Sweet Bread French Toast with pineapple, powdered sugar and macadamia nuts can only be truly experienced in Hawaii.  The coffee is great, too.

Lappert’s: Fantastic Hawaiian inspired ice cream flavors and a great bakery. Yep, we went to Lappert’s multiple times in Po’ipu.

Pub Grubbin

Cheers to the "Westernmost Brew Pub"

Waimea Brewing Co: The “westernmost brew pub” was a must stop for us. The IPA hit the spot for sure. The food was very fried and pretty tasty though the wings were a little too breaded for Joe’s taste. At 11, he is quite the wing expert.  The service? Not so good. Don’t be in a hurry. But lingering there was quite enjoyable and exploring the plantation and black beach on the property was great time.

Downstairs Cafe: Literally “downstairs” from the fancier Merriman’s, is a bar/pub with seat yourself service and a very full, family-friendly menu. The pizzas, fish tacos, burgers and beer were all perfect for lunch or dinner.

Nice Meal

Keoki’s Paradise: Keoki’s has the perfect Hawaiian dining experience. Fresh air, lush plantings, bubbling water, etc. Dinners are on the more expensive side so we opted for lunch and all had reasonably priced and delicious meals.

Casa di Amici: Located just a short stroll from our condo, was this cute and fabulous and spendy restaurant. Definitely a standout meal on Kaua’i. We all chose different pastas. Mine had spicy, house made sausage. Ridiculously good. Ben chose just a simple house fettucine alfredo and added shrimp. It was delicious. I “had” to finish his leftovers. Lots of great choices. Make reservations.

Our condo had a full kitchen, so we did do some cooking. Costco is a bit of a vacation “buzz kill,” but when you see the prices at the other stores, you’ll find it is worth the stop. And, we were thrilled to find a few items we could only see in Hawaii: Kona coffee, bacon and pineapple brats, and Oroweat Hawaiian sweet bread. And, if you want to find some fresh fish to grill up or some ahi poke and the like, drop by the Koloa Fish Market.

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