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Tanioka’s Seafoods & Catering: A Hawaii Food Institution

A visit to Tanioka’s Seafoods & Catering is like taking a crash course in Local Hawaiian Grinds 101. Founded in 1978 by Mel and Lynn Tanioka, this contemporary delicatessen has been serving local delicacies for nearly 30 years. Tanioka’s is as close as you can get to an IRL cheat sheet of local foods.

Located in the old plantation town of Waipahu, Tanioka’s popularity stems from their successful catering business, however, that doesn’t stop locals from standing in line (out the door and often in the hot sun) for some local comfort food. If Hawaii’s okazuya and crack seed shops of yesteryear were to have a baby, Tanioka’s would be it. And trust me, that baby is oh so delicious.

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Moku Kitchen by Peter Merriman

A founding contributor of Hawaii Regional Cuisine, Peter Merriman has long been known for his inventive menus that champion local farmers and fisherman. We are definitely fans of Chef Merriman and always make it a point to enjoy his offerings when visiting the neighbor islands. His namesake Merriman’s restaurants are found in Waimea on the The Big Island, Kapalua on Maui, and Poipu on Kauai. Oahu is home to two of his more casual, concept restaurants: Monkeypod Kitchen and Moku Kitchen. We finally had a chance to check out the latter.

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Eating House 1849 at Kapolei Commons

Kapolei is hardly the first place that pops to my mind when it comes to contemporary, modern dining. That said, Oahu’s “Second City” has been stepping up her game. The latest addition worth mentioning is Chef Roy Yamaguchi’s contribution to the westside, Eating House 1849. Located next to the Regal Kapolei Commons 12 Theater Complex, this is the second of three Eating House 1849 restaurants to pop up in the state. If you’re a fan of Roy’s, then you’ll likely want to make the drive out.

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Siphon Coffee at Cafe Lani

All-you-can-eat bread & pastry, good coffee, lovely ambience, and notoriously long wait times. These were all things that I had either heard or read about before I stepped into Cafe Lani, one of the restaurant offerings in Ala Moana Center’s new Ewa Wing. But what would my actual experience be like?

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Hank’s Haute Dogs

In 2007, Hank Adaniya walked away from his highly acclaimed Chicago-based restaurant, Trio, to move to Hawaii to open a hot dog stand. This seemingly random diversion was nothing of the sort since his parents owned a small hot dog stand in Waikiki during the 1940’s. Fortunately for Adaniya, the high-end hot dog idea was a success and has become a go-to favorite for locals craving a great hot dog.

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