The Big Island of Hawaii – Where to Eat and Drink

The Big Island of Hawaii – Where to Eat and Drink

July 10, 2018 Indulge Plan 5

As we keep visiting the island, we will keep updating this list with a focus on small, local and unique businesses. When there is only one location of the place mentioned, if you click on its name, you will be taken to a Google Map where you can pin the location for future reference.

For poke:

Da Poke Shack: Located in Kona, Da Poke shack is one of the more popular poke places and it’s delicious but not cheap at $27.99 per pound. Considering how expensive sub-par poke is here in Vancouver, the poke at Da Poke Shack pricing is on par but the quality is outstanding, it’s never frozen and not salty.  More information: http://dapokeshack.com/

Poke from Da Poke Shack and salad from Island Naturals

Poke from Da Poke Shack and salad from Island Naturals

Hale l’a Da Fish House: Located in Kawaihae, Hale I’a Da Fish House is our favorite place to grab poke to go. It’s a very small place that sells out fast to it’s best to go to early and remember they’re only open Monday-Friday during the summer and Monday-Saturday in the fall/winter. At $12.99 per pound, they have some of the freshest poke we’ve ever had in Hawaii and it’s not overly salty. This small family owned and run poke shack credits the taste and quality of their poke from the love they feel in making it and sharing it! More information: http://dafishhouse.restaurantwebexpert.com/

Hale l'a Da Fish House from outside

Hale l’a Da Fish House from outside

Umeke’s: With 2 locations in the Kona area, Umeke’s offers up delicious poke bowls and other food in either a small restaurant with counter service or a sit-down restaurant (there is a poke bar for takeout as well). More information: http://www.umekesrestaurants.com/locations

For craft beer/cider: 

Ola Brew: Located in Kona, Ola Brew has the best beer on the island and tasty craft ciders brewed in-house. You can enjoy the beer and cider in the tasting room or purchase cans and get growler fills. More information: https://www.olabrewco.com/

Ola Brew tasting room

Ola Brew tasting room

Beer and cider flight at Ola Brew

Beer and cider flight at Ola Brew

For coffee:

Daylight Mind Coffee Company: Located in Kona, Daylight Mind’s café setting is one of my favorite ones in the world. You can sit in a rocking chair as you face the ocean and enjoy your coffee. They also have a full service restaurant and bar, and happy hour featuring beer, cider, wine, and cocktails (Ola Brew is on tap here!). There is a second location in Waikoloa but we recommend the location in Kona for the atmosphere. More information: https://www.daylightmind.com/

Outdoor seating at Daylight Mind Coffee Company in Kona

Outdoor seating at Daylight Mind Coffee Company in Kona

For happy hour:

Lava Lava Beach Club: Located in Waikoloa on the beach, the Lava Lava Club is a great place to have a casual happy hour barefoot on the beach. Happy hour runs daily from 15:00-17:00 and offers discounts on select draft beers, cocktails, wine and food. The Lava Lava Beach Club is a very family friendly place so don’t worry about bringing children. We love how casual it is here and find that this type of setting is missing from other Hawaiian Islands. Since we’ve last visited, they have expanded to add a lawn area where you can play games as well as enjoy drinks and food. We would also recommend the Lava Lava Beach Club for those wanting to enjoy the stunning sunsets on the west coast of the Big Island. More information: https://lavalavabeachclub.com/bigisland/

Max enjoying a $5 beer at happy hour at the Lava Lava Beach Club

Max enjoying a $5 beer at happy hour at the Lava Lava Beach Club

Lava Lava Beach Club lawn area with games

Lava Lava Beach Club lawn area with games

Sunset at the Lava Lava Beach Club

Sunset at the Lava Lava Beach Club

Hurricane fries for $6 during happy hour at the Lava Lava Beach Club

Hurricane fries for $6 during happy hour at the Lava Lava Beach Club

For produce:

South Kona Fruit Stand: If you’re in the captain Cook area, check out the South Kona Fruit Stand to find exotic fruits and veggies grown locally as well as home-made snacks like sandwiches and smoothies. More information: http://www.southkonafruitstand.com

Exotic fruit at the South Kona Fruit Stand

Exotic fruit at the South Kona Fruit Stand

For huli-huli chicken and ribs:

Randy’s Huli Chicken and Ribs: Located off the Mamalahoa Highway in Kealakekua, Randy’s Huli Chicken and Ribs serves up chicken and ribs a-la-carte or in the plate lunch format with rice and corn. More information: https://www.facebook.com/randyshuli/

For salad bar/prepared food:

Island Naturals Market: With locations in Kona, Hilo, and Pahoa, Island Naturals Market is a good place to find a salad bar, prepared salads and other foods, as well as organic produce and natural foods. Lots of options here for vegans. More information: https://www.islandnaturals.com/

For thin crust pizza:

Big Island Pizza: With a location just outside of Kona and one in Hilo, Big Island Pizza is a great place to grab a takeout thin-crust pizza or to eat in. More information: http://www.bigislandpizza.com/

For local snacks:

Kona Chips: Located in the Captain Cook area, Kona Chips is a great place to visit to pick up some snacks, like their delicious and addictive handmade kettle chips. The plain chips are good but it’s the furikake that we love for their sweet and salty taste on a super crispy potato chip. They also have other local products and snacks, like lillikoi butter, mac nut brittle, and shrimp chips to name a few. More information: https://konachips.net/

Kona Chips store-front

Kona Chips store-front

For a farmer’s market experience:

Located in Waimea, the Kamuela Farmer’s Market is open on Saturdays from 07:30-noon and offers up locally made food and other products: from art to moringa plants to racelette and smoothies, there something for everyone. With plenty of food options, it’s a good place to grab a snack as you explore the Waimea area. We were full from breakfast but would like to try the lebanese food next time. For more information: http://www.kamuelafarmersmarket.com/.

The Kamuela Market in Waimea on Saturdays

The Kamuela Market in Waimea on Saturdays

For casual home-cooked farm-to-table breakfast and lunch:

If you’re planning to visit the Waipio Valley, a stop at the Waipio Cookhouse is a must. This open-aired restaurant with stunning views serves up common and local favourites using local ingredients exceeded our expectations. Everything is made fresh and to order and it’s BYOB. We ordered the Kanahonua Farms burger served with homemade pickles and slaw and for $10, it was a budget friendly meal that didn’t compromise on taste, quality, and quantity. We really enjoyed the Hawaiian bun’s sweetness and the freshness of the tomatoes and lettuce on the burger. Next time, Jason wants to get the lamb burger and I want to try the fish salad. For more information: https://waipiocookhouse.info/ .

View of the Waipio Valley just down the road from the Waipio Cookhouse

View of the Waipio Valley just down the road from the Waipio Cookhouse

View from the outdoor dining area at the Waipio Cookhouse

View from the outdoor dining area at the Waipio Cookhouse

The Waipio Cookhouse restaurant

The Waipio Cookhouse restaurant

For local desserts:

Two Ladies Kitchen: if you find yourself in Hilo, make your way to Two Ladies Kitchen for some delicious local desserts all home-made in this small bakery. The specialty here is “mochi”, and they are renowned for their strawberry mocha. Due to ongoing popularity, you may want to pre-order because they sell out fast. More information: https://www.yelp.ca/biz/two-ladies-kitchen-hilo

Mochi from Two Ladies

Mochi from Two Ladies

For a grocery store with extended hours:

Foodland Farms Mauna Lani: We visited the Foodland Farms in Mauna Lani during our last visit because they’re open daily from 06:00-23:00 and have a great selection of general groceries, produce, beer, wine, and poke. For anyone staying at the Westin Hapuna, this is your best option to pick-up supplies. More information: https://www.foodland.com/stores/foodland-farms-mauna-lani

For an acai bowl:

Basik Cafe: Located in Kona on the beach stretch in the town’s more tourist commercial center, Basik Cafe offers acai bowls and smoothies in an open air-shack style setting. More information: http://www.basikacai.com/

Acai bowl from Basik Cafe

Acai bowl from Basik Cafe

Do you like to research where to eat and drink before your trip? Do you prefer local places or chains that you’re used to? Is there anything on this list that we should add?

Related Posts:

Kauai:

Oahu:

Big Island:

Other:

 

5 Responses

  1. […] The Big Island of Hawaii – Where to Eat and Drink […]

  2. Erin says:

    We also totally loved Umeke’s!! Makes me wish I had some good quality poke now!

    • weleavetoday says:

      Poke seems to be a global trend now…Wonder if you’ll encounter some on your trip that will satisfy a craving!

  3. […] The Big Island of Hawaii – Where to Eat and Drink – WeLeaveToday says: October 8, 2018 at 3:08 pm […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *