Din­ing & En­ter­tain­ment

101 Things to Do (Big Island) - - DINING & ENTERTAINMENT -

Go to a Lu‘au

Loosely trans­lated, a lu‘au is a big feast with a lot of singing, danc­ing and fun. Lu‘au of­ten fea­ture home­grown en­ter­tain­ment, com­plete with tra­di­tional hula and Poly­ne­sian fes­tiv­i­ties. Served with that is a main course of kalua pig—ten­der, shred­ded pork cooked in an imu (un­der­ground oven)—and typ­i­cal Hawai­ian sides of poi, sweet pota­toes, lomilomi salmon and hau­pia. It’s the per­fect cel­e­bra­tion of cul­ture and ca­ma­raderie.

The Sun­set Luau at the Waikoloa Beach Mar­riott Re­sort & Spa treats guests are treated to an imu cer­e­mony, where the pig is brought out of the un­der­ground oven, tra­di­tional dances from around Poly­ne­sia and a se­lec­tion of con­tem­po­rary and Hawai­ian fare—all as the sun sets over ‘Anaeho‘omalu Bay.

• Hawai‘i Savers (808) 937-3737 or (888) 283-8818 • Is­land Breeze Lu‘au (808) 326-4969 • The Sun­set Luau at the Waikiki Beach Mar­riott

Re­sort & Spa (808) 866-6789

Ab­sorb the Spirit of Hula

In its au­then­tic form, hula is the most pow­er­ful ex­pres­sion of in­dige­nous Hawai­ian cul­ture that ex­ists. The chants and dance com­prise an oral his­tory of Hawai‘i’s na­tive peo­ple, passed down from a kumu hula (teacher) to each gen­er­a­tion.

Hula per­for­mances also abound at shop­ping cen­ters and schools around the is­land. If you’d like to learn the art of the dance your­self, look into tak­ing a class at var­i­ous re­sorts.

If you want to ab­sorb the his­tory and cul­ture of Hawai‘I, head to a nearby slack key gui­tar per­for­mance, a mu­si­cal style unique to th­ese Is­lands.

In the 1800s, pan­iola (Hawai­ian cow­boys) learned rop­ing from Mex­i­can cow­boys brought to the is­land by King Kame­hameha III. Th­ese main­land cow­boys brought with them their style of gui­tar play­ing. The Hawai­ian pan­iola be­gan

Dis­cover Slack Key and Lis­ten

loos­en­ing the strings, adapt­ing the sound to lo­cal mu­sic. Slack key was born.

If you’re not lucky enough to stum­ble across any back­yard kani ka pila (Hawai­ian for “play mu­sic”), you can check out the sound at the fol­low­ing places, among oth­ers: Four Sea­sons Hualalai Re­sort’s Lava Lounge, Kailu­aKona; nightly, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. (808) 325-8000 Cen­ter­stage at King’s Shops, Waikoloa, Tues­days, 6 to 7 p.m. Bam­boo Restau­rant, Hawi, monthly (808) 889-5555 Red Water Café, Waimea, typ­i­cally on Sun­days, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. (808) 885-9299

En­ter the Shave Ice De­bate

Shave ice—it’s not your av­er­age snow cone. De­bates rage over which shack, shop or stand has the most finely shaven ice or per­fectly crafted syrup. From hau­pia (co­conut) to li hing mui (a salty, dried plum) to straw­berry, shave ice fla­vors can be se­lected to fit any­one’s taste buds, the per­fect end­ing to a sunny day at the beach.

On top of all of the de­li­cious fla­vors avail­able, lo­cal shave ice is of­ten ac­com­pa­nied by ice cream, con­densed milk, or azuki beans. To try it lo­cal-style, add all three.

There are numer­ous op­tions through­out the is­land: In Kona, try Scan­di­na­vian Shave Ice on the cor­ner of Ali‘i Dr. and Likana Ln. In Ka­muela, visit Anu­enue Shave Ice at the Kawai­hae Har­bor Shop­ping Cen­ter. Or for Hilo, check out Itsu’s Fish­ing Sup­plies, 810 Pi‘ilani St.

Get Fish as Fresh as It Comes

You’ve seen lo­cals dig­ging into a dish that re­sem­bles cubes of raw fish—this is poke (“poh-keh”), ar­guably the best way to eat freshly caught ‘ahi (tuna) or tako (oc­to­pus). Poke can be raw or smoked, and tossed in a va­ri­ety of sauces, from sim­ple shoyu (soy sauce) to orig­i­nal fla­vors like wasabi or sesame.

You can pick this dish up at lo­cal gro­cery stores such as KTA, Food­land, Sack N Save or fish mar­kets like Da Poke Shack in Kailua-Kona or Suisan in Hilo. If you want, you can also get a side of white or brown rice.

Visit Poke Shack at 76-6246 Alii Dr. in Kailua-Kona or Suisan at 1965 Kame­hameha Ave in Hilo.

Try the Is­land Take on Fine Din­ing

Fine din­ing in Hawai‘i is an ele­gant meal that is the di­rect re­sult of a chef work­ing from fresh-off-the-farm pro­duce. Here, that com­bi­na­tion is known as Hawaii Re­gional Cui­sine, which com­bines the clas­sic tech­niques of Europe, the savvy style and so­phis­ti­ca­tion of Amer­i­can Re­gional Cui­sine, and the ex­otic in­gre­di­ents of the Pa­cific Rim. Peter Mer­ri­man, owner of

Mer­ri­man’s restau­rant in Waimea, was among the orig­i­nal chefs in­volved in de­vel­op­ing Hawaii Re­gional Cui­sine.

At Kawai­hae Har­bor, Café Pesto and Kawai­hae Har­bor Grill and Seafood Bar serve great food in fun set­tings, as do Blue Dragon Coastal Cui­sine and Musi­quar­ium, which serves pro­duce from Hawi farms and fish from just across the street in Kawai­hae Bay.

EatLunch, Hawai‘i-Style

The plate lunch is a quintessen­tial part of Hawai­ian cui­sine. Two-parts rice, one-part mac salad and one-part meat, th­ese large meals cover the ba­sics and some­times even all three daily meals. Even bet­ter, their prices ri­val those of any typ­i­cal fast-food joint found on Hawai‘i. Just pick up a plate lunch, plop down on a beach, and en­joy what life has dished you up.

Some typ­i­cal and au­then­tic Hawai­ian plate lunches are: loco moco, a ham­burger steak served over rice and topped with an egg and gravy; Kalua pork, tra­di­tion­ally pork that has been slow-cooked in an imu and served with cab­bage; and chicken katsu, which is a Ja­panese-style chicken cut­let. Korean plate lunches fea­ture items such as kalbi and bi bim bap.

Plate lunches can be found at lunch wag­ons, drive-ins, and small mar­kets around the is­land—you’ll be sur­prised at the places you’ll stum­ble upon them.

SeeCho­co­late Made from Bean to Bar

Ever won­dered what goes into mak­ing that mag­i­cal treat called choco­late? Lucky for vis­i­tors to the Big Is­land, Kona boasts not only cof­fee farms but also a one-stop field-to-bar ex­pe­ri­ence, The Orig­i­nal Hawai­ian Choco­late Fac­tory.

While ca­cao isn’t en­demic to Hawai‘i, the same Kona slopes that are ideal for cof­fee grow­ing are per­fect har­vest­ing ca­cao. On South Kona’s Mt. Hualalai, The Orig­i­nal Hawai­ian Choco­late Fac­tory not only farms ca­cao beans, but also hand­picks, sun dries, and process the beans.

The com­pany also takes it the fi­nal step, turn­ing the pro­cessed beans into au­then­tic Hawai­ian choco­late bars. So with a sin­gle visit to the farm, guests get to see the en­tire choco­late process in ac­tion.

Tours run ev­ery Wed­nes­day at 9 a.m. and Fri­day at 9:30 a.m. by phone ap­point­ment. Call (888) 447-2626.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.