If you could visit just one of Chef Peter Merriman’s restaurants, it should be his flagship Waimea location. Merriman’s Waimea has been praised by Honolulu Magazine as the “Best Big Island Restaurant” for 15 consecutive years. 15 years. Insane. And yes, the food is indeed delicious. Chef Merriman defined what became known as Hawaii Regional Cuisine, along with other notable chefs, including Alan Wong, Roy Yamaguchi, and George Mavrothalassitis.
When in Kona, you drink coffee. You drink a lot of coffee. That’s what you do. Below you’ll find five coffee shop stops that we made during a recent trip to Kona. Do note that the locations chosen below were selected based on location and convenience. This is by no means a Top 5 list of any kind.
For some reason, Hawaii has been obsessed with that insulated bottle brand that starts with an H and ends with a K. You know what brand I’m talking about. Thing is, that brand of water bottle always seems to break down on on me. Yup, I’ve never had a Hydro Flask last longer than three months. I’ve even sent back for replacement bottles (read the very bottom for more information on said replacements), only to have the replacement bottle then break down. And by break down I mean it no longer will maintain insulation as promised. In other words, they sucked.
Enter Klean Kanteen. Klean Kanteen renewed my faith in the insulated water bottle market.
Move over frozen yogurt, the next cool thing has arrived to the islands. Nitrogenie, located in the brand new Ewa Wing of Ala Moana Center, is the first made-to-order liquid nitrogen ice cream shop to hit Hawaii. Earlier this week I had the chance to chill (the icy puns continue) with Nitrogenie co-founder, Todd Farr, and taste some of their unique offerings.
I first read Rolf Pott’s Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel many years ago, upon recommendation from Tim Ferriss. The book blew me away. Wanderlust through words, I thought. But the act of vagabonding is much more than just a lust for wandering. Vagabonding, in many ways, is about inner self-discovery, coupled with the ability to experience pure joy from the people that we surround ourselves with and the world that we live in.
If you’re willing to spend some time standing in line and waiting for a table to open up, then Island Vintage Coffee should be on your list of must try breakfast spots. The food here is colorful, filling, and oh so worth the wait in line.
If you’re looking for a relaxing lunch spot, then you really don’t need to look further than the Halekulani Hotel. The two restaurants located at this acclaimed 5-star hotel, Orchids and House Without A Key, both have a magical calming touch that will enhance your sense of rest and relaxation. The ambience and impeccable service, the sound of the waves, and of course, their indulgent signature coconut cake.
I’ve been on a bit of a health kick over the last couple of months (more on that in a future post, and yes, you may commence the rolling of the eyes). That said, I’m never one to turn down a good burger. And Square Barrels, well, they’ve got some pretty darn good burgers.