CHEF SAMBRANO Food Articles Video Recipes




Monday, April 29, 2013


It was a warm Saturday in April, the birds were chirping, the cars were driving by, and all the friends and fellow employees were gathering for a day of celebration, a celebration of being alive, financially strapped, but nonetheless, alive...did I say financially strapped? I think I did.

Anyhow, it was also a day of a mandatory meeting for work. And get this, I was supposed to be off. Was I pissed off? No, I was kind of bummed, but there was food to be eaten, food my friend, good home style food, and friends....friends that are financially strapped, but friends nonetheless. Did I say financially strapped? Yeah, I think I did...never mind. Back to the get together, it was a meeting of minuscule proportions, but there was sushi, and chips and dip for starters, good stuff. And my boss baked snicker doodles for dessert but I ate a few before the meal was cooked.

The best thing about our meetings is we have two expert grillers, and man if you could smell that picture, you'd devour a piece of that tri tip steak, seasoned to perfection with Hawaiian Sea Salt. That's all, nothing else, no special rubs, no herbs or spices, just the salt that brings out the flavor of the meat itself cooked medium well.

The tri tip is a good part of the cow or cattle to eat, it is tender for grilling, and if you get a prime or choice cut it will be marbled pretty good. It will be juicy. Like a good woman. Healthy and juicy, and fertile.

Imagine eating this meat with rice, chow mein noodles, green salad with papaya seed dressing, macaroni salad, and a cold beverage? That's heaven man, heaven.

The tri tip comes from the bottom part of the sirloin and is triangular weighing in about two pounds per side. Just keep in mind most cuts from the loin region is great for dry heat cooking including grilling, sautéing, stir frying etc. and even roasting in the oven. 

Maui folks does grilling the simple way, get that meat and Hawaiian sea salt and go to town.

Monday, April 22, 2013


Some days eating the foods from the Philippines just hits the spot. Vidad's in the Queen Kaahumanu Shopping Center in Kahului just minutes from the airport has all the Filipino standards as well as some other local favorites.

If you are new to the islands, this is how you order the food here, like many other plate lunch diners. You step up to the counter, and order from the warmers, there's a few items to choose from, and you'll be charged for 2 or 3 entree selection which comes with rice or pancit noodles. Pancit noodles are like chow mein noodles, sautéed with some pork, shrimp and veggies. Some pork adobo, some pork and mung beans, some chicken dish, longanisa sausage. Even some Korean style food.

It's all good. The last meal I ate their was their Hamburger Steak Plate, it had two thick hamburger steaks, tasty but it was too hard for me, a good hamburger steak is juicy on its own and can be cut with a fork, and the gravy need not be soupy which was just how Vidad's made my plate, but I'm not really complaining, it was good, and the macaroni salad was perfect and the rice was cooked good too. Back to my version of a great hamburger steak, it has to be simply seasoned with some salt and pepper, maybe some onion powder, and some finely minced sweet onions, some mayonnaise, some mustard, some steak sauce, and just a bit of bread crumbs with no seasonings. It has to be about 5 oz each. Formed by hand into an oval shape, patted about 1/4 inch thick, seared on a flat top just right not over cooked, and plated, with brown beef stock gravy homemade. No onions or mushrooms needed, although there's no problem with me if it's on the burger steaks.

Keeping a hamburger steak simple is the key, with too much herbs and spices you kinda ruin it, unless you're trying to get a different style, like maybe an Italian spiced mix, I guess it can work, but really, the salt and pepper concoction can't go wrong at all. 

And the macaroni salad needs to be made with Best Foods Real Mayonnaise or something close to it, elbow macaroni, some minced onions, minced celery, a tad of shredded carrots, and maybe some peas. If someone put some tuna in there all the better that would be a filling plate. Remember lots of locals in Hawaii love white rice, meat, fish, and mac salad.

My cookbook is going to be out soon.


Are you staying in Kapalua any time soon? If you'll be staying at the Napili Kai, Coconut Grove, Residence at Kapalua Bay, any of the Kapalua Villas, The Pineapple Hill Estates, The Plantation Estates and you want local grinez. The Honolua ABC Store has pretty good local food, not the best local food but for where this is located right next to the Ritz Carlton Hotel, you can at least get a taste of what locals crave.

The loco moco is an island favorite, white sticky rice, with a hamburger steak patty, an egg over easy, topped with grilled onions and brown gravy, this meal is like the meal of all meals if you love rich food and lots of cholesterol. Loco moco plates are popping up everywhere, in every mainland foodie's conversation. "Hey I tried a loco moco for the first time it was nuts!" Hmmm, I can see it now, a loco moco bar, where all you get is foods with an egg on it with gravy, imagine that? "Hey let's go to Joe's Loco Moco Bar, they got great Goat Chops Moco."

So if you'll be staying in the Northwest side of Maui, hit up the Honolua ABC Store located on Office Road, Kapalua Maui, and get this you sinners, the Sacred Hearts Church is right next door.

Friday, April 19, 2013


Maui foods, it encompasses every nationality here, so Mexican foods are gaining popularity as a local food too. The herbs and spices used in Mexican cooking is similar to the foods I cook which is Filipino foods, both have a Spanish influence with peppers, pork, vegetables, soups, wraps. Really we are all connected.

Recently I had myself a fish taco plate from Casa Maya in the Lahaina Cannery Mall, it was very tasty, the fish was seasoned just right, the rice was flavorful, the beans were good. 

Mexican food on Maui is getting better with more Mexican people moving to the island, they are bringing their home style recipes to share with the people and it is a beautiful thing. Sharing is.

Recently we did a part 1 on making tamales video with a woman from Mexico that lives on Maui, and she shared with us a cookbook of Mexican comfort foods printed in Mexico it was a book that was handed down to her from her own mom. The book had a picture of every meal that was in there.

If you are coming to Maui, there are some decent Mexican places to visit, just google it and you will find it. Casa Maya, Amigo's, Maui Tacos, Fernando's, Poli's, are all pretty good.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

MAUI- Plate Lunch Crazy

Local Maui Style, local Hawaiian style eats, it's all simple stuff, no wine sauces, no fancy expensive foods and preparations. Our comfort food can be as simple as some ground beef and veggies and a curry sauce to make Hamburger Curry like the plate on the left from Nagasako Okazu Ya and Deli in Lahaina Maui, two scoops of rice and some salad, with a Spam Musubi and breaded teriyaki beef in the small container on the left.

Nagasako's have been in business way before I was born, the family operated a supermarket in the old Lahaina Shopping Center, the best cuts of beef, pork, chicken, and fish could be found there, and their cooked foods was awesome. As time moved forward, the old shopping center's building was knocked down and replaced with a new building to what it is now, if you visit Maui and have tickets to the Ulalena show, this is the spot where the Nagasako Supermarket once stood, today a Foodland occupies as the only market in that area.

Today the Nagasako family operates their Okazu Ya & Deli across of the Foodland in another building, their deli is busy in the early mornings and during lunch time, this is the only place to get real local style home cooking, where finding chow fun, roast pork, shoyu chicken, chicken hekka, hamburger steaks, sushi, sandwiches and soft drinks, the line can go out the door and into the parking stalls.

Local food here is just simple, cooked with simple ingredients you'd find on your racks in your home. Local style is the good then...this is what we call local food, or some of it.

Tips on ordering:

1. make up your mind as to what entree you want by looking in the hot pans in the display case, if you don't know what it is ask them.

2. decide what kind of starches you want, do you want white rice? Or chow fun noodles instead?

3. Order a soft drink or some water and pay for your plate lunch, and away you go. 

What do I get?

Ron gets, if they have it. An order of chow fun noodles, a scoop of macaroni salad, shoyu chicken, and hamburger steak, that would be two chicken thighs and two hamburger steaks with brown gravy over the burger patties. I top the mac salad with soy sauce, as well as the chow fun noodles, there you have it, how an expert orders his plate at the Nagasako Okazu Ya & Deli.

Friday, April 12, 2013

MAUI- Sam Sato's Hamburger Steak Plate

You want what we want you visitor from Anyplace U.S.A., you want the local grinez, the local ono (delicious) food we crave on a day off, or after a hard day of fun in the sun. Well my friend, you gotta hit up Sam Sato's in Wailuku for some Hamburger Steaks with gravy, white rice and some tasty macaroni salad on the side, or actually on the same plate. This photo I got from so I wanna say thanks for letting me post this, well I didn't get full permission, but this is where I got it on

Now look at this beautiful picture, look how the brown gravy shines on the hamburger steaks, that's two good sized patties of ground beef seasoned to Sam Sato's perfection, and the two scoops of rice, I just look at it, I know it's cooked perfect, nice and sticky that clings to your fork, take a stab at the hamburger, dip it in some gravy, and take a bite, and quickly nail a fork full of rice, maybe dipping that fork full of rice into the gravy too. And then, a fork full of the tasty macaroni salad. We locals love macaroni salad, I say it all the time and can be repetitive however, we just love it. Macaroni salad, simply made with macaroni noodles cooked just right, mayonnaise, and some shredded carrots and celery. We love mayonnaise, it's like the local sauce, the local dressing. Don't be surprised to see a big local brother asking for a side ramekin of Best Foods Mayonnaise and seeing him scoop it all over his rice and then pouring some soy sauce over it. Yeah it's bad stuff for the heart but that's how we roll here on the island. The fattier the ground beef the more flavor you will have, and the brown gravy needs to look just like this picture, not too cloudy, but sort of clear. Can you smell it? Can you? Man I'm licking my chops man, I need to go to Sam Sato's in Wailuku Town Maui. 

Sam Sato's
1750 Wili Pa Loop
Wailuku, Hawaii 96793

Thursday, April 11, 2013

MAUI- Da Kitchen, Katsu, Loco Moco, Comfort Foods

Da Kitchen is a great local plate lunch restaurant, I love the one in Kahului near the airport, the portions are huge. I try to stop by there when I can to get the chicken katsu plate, complete with lots of panko breaded chicken, rice and macaroni salad.

I'll utilize all the yelpers out there for a picture. So you visitors out there you want we want, hit Da Kitchen, also in the Rainbow Mall in Kihei, lots of local faves including kalua pork.

On the left the chicken katsu on the right the loco moco. Yes this stuff is rich and filled with calories, so if you are in need of putting on some weight Da Kitchen is the place to go. Locals here love rich food, savory food, food that's simple and Da Kitchen offers great food at affordable prices, and the staff is friendly.

What is a loco moco? It is a hamburger steak or a couple or maybe 3 depending on the size, most local cooks season the ground beef with salt and pepper, garlic powder, maybe some minced onions, some include tabasco, worcestershire sauce, yellow mustard even mayonnaise to make the patties (steaks) rich with flavor and juicy. It is seared, plated and topped with 2 eggs any style with lots of brown gravy, 2 scoops of rice and macaroni salad. Loco moco is becoming a huge popular dish among the visitors to the islands, this meal can put you out, make you go into a coma.

Maui- We Love Kim Chi

Kim Chi is a side of veggies locals love to eat with our plate lunches, that spicy, salty, sour cabbage inspired from Korea can add bite to a simple plate of hamburger steaks, rice and macaroni salad. I love to spoon some of the kim chi sauce on to the rice and macaroni salad giving it more zip.

Locals on Maui, or Hawaii in general are simple eating people, we don't go searching for that rare turmeric root, or that expensive clove, we just use whatever we got in the cupboards and run with it, so our tastes buds aren't complex at all.

Salted and spicy veggies called kim chi makes a plate awesome, one of the places I like to visit is Pearl's in the Queen Kaahumanu Shopping Center, up stairs in the food court, Pearl's offers kim chi, macaroni salad, and a few local and Korean inspired dishes. 

I love to eat the meat jun, which is a marinated piece of beef that is dipped in an egg batter and fried, or the kalbi bbq ribs, with rice and kim chi and macaroni salad. They also have other pickled veggies in the pans, like bean sprouts, potatoes, cabbage, tofu, kelp. It's all good at Pearl's and their kim chi rocks.

Photo fro Meat Jun on the left, Kalbi ribs on the right.

Photo from, Pearl's veggies, lots of good stuff, if you're a vegetarian you can just pick the veggies from the display it is always fresh, not once have I had stale veggies there. Occasionally when they're busy, I'll get an entree and you can tell it was precooked in case they got too slammed.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Maui- Chicken Papaya Soup

Photo from (mahalos)

Man, growing up Hawaiian style is good, being exposed to so many different kinds of foods from all the diverse peoples and cultures. Coming to Hawaii or Maui for the first time and wondering what you should look for as far as eating? Try going to a local dive that serves up good Chicken Papaya soup. It is rooted in the Filipino culture as well as other island nations such as Thailand and Vietnam and Malaysia. However in Hawaii when we think Chicken and Papaya soup we most refer to the ones rooted from the Philippines. On Maui there are a few restaurants that serve this soup, one is Paradise Market on Wakea Avenue in Kahului just minutes from the airport and minutes from Wailuku, 20 from Kihei and 40 from Lahaina. 

So what is this soup? For one it isn't an appetizer it is a full on meal fit for a king. In the bowl you'll get hints or chunks of fresh smashed ginger root, possibly some watercress, and a fresh soup made from chicken parts, the soups are generally on the cloudy side unlike the French Euro soups, these soups are just skimmed of the froth that develops but enhanced boldly by the chicken meat which is always portioned in a generous fashion, hence this is not an appetizer soup, one may add rice to the bowl and scarf it up quickly. What sets this soup on its own path is the green papayas, not ripe ones but sliced thin green papayas when cooked it transforms into a tender being, and of course every Chicken Papaya aficionado knows the patis (Pah tees ) or Filipino fish sauce needs to be in every soup, the pungent salty and flavorful sauce is common in Filipino cooking as well as Thai, Vietnamese and Chinese cooking too.

Remember to try a bowl of this soup, you may not be used to the smell of the fish sauce, but once you take a slurp of the soup, you will scarf it up. It is also a common sight to be seen in restaurants where people who are hung over from the night before delving into a huge bowl of Chicken Papaya Soup. It's just a great bowl of soup Asian style.


Video of Howard and Steve Canastra's Aloha Deli in Maalaea, Maui at the Harbor Shops, the best coffee and hot dogs, a real father and son mom and pop kind of place.

Maria's Tamales on Maui - Maria Ayala makes Tamales

Video of tamale tasting in Napili on Maui. Da Foodie Boodies episode, tamales by Maria Ayala.

Maria's Tamales on Maui - Maria Ayala makes Tamales

Sampling Maria Ayala's tamales in Napili on the island of Maui. On Da Foodie Boodies

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Maui Eats Pork & Peas

Pork & Peas is one of the dishes locals on Maui love to eat, an influence of Spanish/Filipino, you can find this dish in a few Asian restaurants or strictly Filipino markets. On Maui you can visit Foodland Supermarkets and find it at the deli. Or Paradise Market on Wakea Street in Kahului.

What makes this dish so popular? For one, if you love pork it will make your mouth water, with spices like cinnamon, peppers, bay leaf, vinegar, tomato sauce, green peas. It is a braise, or some will call it a stew. Usually pork shoulder is used with some pork bellies sautéed in oil, and the other ingredients are added in and simmered to perfection.

Served with white, brown, or a fried rice with macaroni salad, this dish makes a perfect plate lunch. If you are out in the Kapalua area, there's a store called the Honolua General Store operated by ABC Stores, and on certain days you'll be able to get a Pork & Peas plate.

Picture from

Friday, April 5, 2013

Maui- Plate Lunches The Comfort Food!

Visitors to Maui, or Hawaii in general you getting hungry? And you want to eat what we eat don't you? Well, let's just stay on Maui for a minute, there's a lot of places you can go to to eat simple kick ass ono (delicious) meals.

Noodles are a big thing in the islands, chow mein (Chinese), udon (Japanese), chow fun (Chinese), Pad Thai (Thai), Pancit (Filipino).

Pictured here from is a plate of chow fun from Aloha Mixed Plate on Front Street in Lahaina. Google them, chow fun is definitely something we locals love to eat, and this place makes their own noodles, fresh from scratch! Can't get any better than that, and the prices here is reasonable.

Thanks to for another picture, here is a meal, some soup, some BBQ sticks, and the large plate is Sam Sato's famous Dry Noodles. Sam Sato's has been around before I was born, and it is totally local, simple foods of Asian background, very tasty stuff, they're located in Wailuku, Maui in the Mill Yard. Google them if you want some local style this is where we go to grine or to eat.

Pancit noodles is like a Filipino version of chow mein, seasoned with herbs and spices, meats ranging from pork and chicken to beef and shrimp. The base season though is the fish sauce or patis. If you love Pad Thai, try pancit if you can. Paradise Market in Kahului, RVN in Lahaina.

In Hawaii Saimin noodles in a seafood broth with garnishes ranging from chopped scallions, fish cakes, ham, pork, beef, eggs just to name a few. This soup is not for an appetizer, some restaurants have small sizes that two can share. It is a meal in itself, if you had frozen saimin, or cup ramen, you'll love fresh saimin made to order, hot with the broth's aroma permeating through the air, it's a great meal on chilly nights, or after you and friends went out drinking the night before. Locals would get a bowl of saimin, with a cheeseburger on the side for breakfast. Or a whole plate lunch such as a hamburger steak plate with 2 scoops of rice with macaroni salad, imagine a whole plate of food and a bowl of saimin? Hungry locals don't fool around, they take their eating seriously. 

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Maui- Filipino Foods RVN Deli Lahaina

Local foods...this blog is geared towards local style eats here in Hawaii. From here on out, it's about the grinez, the good foods, comforting, savory, ethnic, just plain good you can smell it and taste kine. A ha. 

Filipino foods are rocking in Hawaii, visitors are finding out how delicious foods inspired from the Philippines can be, simply because when you are talking Filipino foods, you are talking foods that can be salty, sour, sweet, umami, steamed, braised, fried, baked, roasted, grilled, and just goooood!

If you come to Lahaina, Maui and want to get some good Filipino food, and how do you know if it's good? Well once you park the car and step out, you can smell the pork adobo simmering, you can smell the soups, the garlic, ginger, fish sauce... it all comes together in an exotic concert of excellent eats.

Noodles, Filipinos noodles are something like the Chinese, utilizing egg noodles, wheat noodles, rice noodles, in soups, salads, or in stir fries. Pancit (Pahn sit), is a chow mein like dish with veggies, spices and herbs, and choices of seafood, poultry, pork or beef. I find my culture to be privy to pork and seafoods.

One such eatery you need to check out is R.V.N. Deli Kitchen & Catering Services at 840 Wainee St. Phone 808-661-0044. Owned by Roger & Vangie Navarro. Hours are Sun-Sat 7:00A to 8P. If you see the Chevron station on Hwy. 30, turn either left or right depending where you are at on Papaulua St. and turn left on Wainee at the corner you'll see Mc Donald's, and then left in the Lahaina Square Shopping Center, head directly to the end of the lot and it's tucked underneath the two story section.

On the menu the prices are totally reasonable, Plate Lunches range from 5.95 for 1 choice entree, to 6.95 for 2 entrees, and 7.95 for 3 choice.

Egg rolls are a hot item, they even got prime rib, and dessert the fruity with ice Halo Halo for 3.95

Korean Kalbi Ribs 9.99

Baby Back Ribs 13.95

Shrimp w/ Veggies 12.95

Ham & Cheese Melt 6.75

BLT 6.95

Spaghetti w/ Meatballs 8.99


Egg Omelets 9.95

Hawaiian Style French Toast 7.50

Eggs, Bacon or Sausage 7.99

Buttermilk Pancakes 7.45


Teriyaki Chicken 8.50

Chicken Katsu 8.25

Panko Fried Mahi Mahi 10.99

Beef Broccoli 9.99

Shrimp Tempura 12.99

Hamburger Steak 7.75

And in the hot hotel pans, the true Filipino favorite can be found hot and juicy and ready to go with some hot rice. Of course, the one entree that everyone craves... it's the Pork Adobo.

So my friends, try R.V.N. Deli Kitchen & Catering.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Local Eats Pork Adobo

Coming to Hawaii? Wondering what is the in thing to eat? Well my friend that's a tough question because in is a lot of things. For one thing, Filipino foods are in, if you haven't tasted Filipino cooking you are missing out. The Filipino style encompasses a wide range of styles, borrowed some from the Chinese, Americans, Spanish it becomes a well rounded cuisine, it uses all of the cooking methods known to the culinary world, grilling, roasting, sautéing, braising, stewing, frying, boiling.

One of the most popular of Filipino dishes is the Adobo, this tangy salty, spicy dish is made with chicken or pork usually, or both at the same time. Some chefs will make fish adobo, or beef adobo. Definitely an influence of the Spaniards, Filipino adobo varies from different regions of the Philippines, but in Hawaii I have found it either on the sour side or salty sour side, less spicy.

So if you are on Maui, there's a few places to get pork or chicken adobo.

Paradise Market in Kahului    Lynn's Kitchenette in Honokowai    Bistro Manila in Kahului    Four Sisters Kitchen in Wailuku    Vidad's in Queen Kaahumanu Mall Kahului

Picture from 

Tip: The good way to eat pork or chicken adobo is to pour it over hot sticky white rice, the natural gravy from the cooking pot is tasty, I used to get extra rice and smother it with the left over gravy, it was delicious, if you do visit the islands, find a Filipino eatery and sample what they have. The cooking utilizes a lot of garlic, ginger, herbs and spices like the Spanish and European cuisines, as well as vinegar and lots of soy and fish sauces like Vietnamese and Chinese cuisines. Filipinos also make awesome coconut desserts.

Local Grines Chinese Style Roast Duck

Hanging roast duck Chinese Style at Roast Duck Restaurant Kitchen in Aiea, on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Picture taken from; thanks.

What locals love is Chinese food, since the Chinese immigrated from China aboard boats and landing on the Hawaiian shores, they introduced their style of cooking which was widely accepted because of its tasty and pleasant aromas.

In the picture is hanging roast duck Chinese style, these birds are seasoned with 5 spices, and you just got to try them, if you love duck or just poultry in general, you'll love these roasted birds. On Maui there's a few places you can go to get roast duck, Wei Wei in Wailuku, and Siu's Chinese Kitchen in the Maui Mall in Kahului.

Locals usually order a whole duck and take it home to eat, there's always a dad or uncle at home with a cleaver and he'll hack the bird up into sections. What goes well with this? White rice or stir fried rice is always great, along with crisp won tons, and chow mein noodles, that's a great Chinese dinner right there.

So this is what we locals in Hawaii love to eat, we love Chinese foods too, and for me I can always nail a Chinese roast duck, if it's a small duck I can scarf the whole thing! Get away! It's all mine! The crisp skin is everyone's favorite, just picking the skin off and eating it before it is hacked up, like trying to get the drumsticks on the Thanksgiving turkey, got to love it man! Roast Duck Chinese style, go find out where you can get it close by your hotel, and eat, eat, eat!

The Loco Moco

Loco Moco, what is it? First of all I need to mention the picture here on this blog post is a loco moco, however I had to paste this picture from another website because I did not have time to cook one for you guys. So thanks to the guys a for this beauty.

Okay guys who don't know what this is, a Loco Moco is a dish made up of seasoned hamburger steaks (patties), and seared to perfection, it is then topped with brown gravy, and two eggs cooked the way you want it. Most people have it sunny side up or over easy so the yolks run right in with the gravy. It is served with two scoops of white rice or fried rice, however now days people are opting for healthier brown rice. And we cannot forget the macaroni salad. Mac salad as the locals say, is just boiled macaroni, seasoned with salt and pepper, it may come with minced onions, minced celery and carrots, depending on the chef or cook, even canned crab meat or tuna is added, or even canned green peas. But remember, a good mac salad has rich real mayonnaise. Good cooks use real mayonnaise of good quality. I like Best Foods.

So this my friends visiting the islands, go and have your fill of our local foods, and if you see Loco Moco on the menu, have a go with that, it'll definitely fill you up. Now if you are still hungry, order another one, if the eatery sells mini plates, ask for a mini loco moco to go.

Here are some of the well known eateries that have it here on Maui.

Aloha Mixed Plate, Da Kitchen, Tasty Crust, L&L Drive Inns, Zippy's, Honolua Store, Sam Sato's, Koho, Kahana Grill.

And if you go to the outer islands especially Honolulu, you'll get a lot of options for Loco Moco, in fact Honolulu has more local eateries than Maui does. Good luck foodie!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Like Like Drive Inn

If you are coming to Hawaii for the first time, and you'll be on Oahu, possibly to visit Pearl Harbor, or visiting Waikiki, for business or pleasure, one institution that you need to visit and that is Like Like Drive Inn. Pronounced (Lee keh, Lee keh). Local Hawaiian style food can be found here, and again local food encompasses foods from all over the planet. If you happen to stop by this place expect a long line of people trying to get in.

Located at 745 Keeaumoku St. Honolulu, HI 96814; Phone: 808-941-2515. The street is pronounced (Kay ay ow mo koo)

My favorites:

Saimin- a Japanese style soup for one person, noodles, seafood broth, fish cakes, veggies.

Loco Moco- Hamburger patties, seared with egg on the top, and topped with brown gravy, rice and mac salad.

Butterfish Plate

Chopped Steak

go to their website

Local Plate Lunches- Chicken

Hawaii is home of plate lunches, foods from a diversified ethnic base, if you are a first timer to Hawaii and wondering what we locals crave, I want you to understand what you are in for. You'll experience a myriad of comfort foods done simple to the point, it could be a stew, a braise, a piece of grilled meat, or soup that is not for starters but for a meal.

So my new to Hawaii friend, or "malahini" (Ma- lah- hee nee) or newbie. Here are some chicken dishes to try from various ethnic groups.

Chicken & Papaya Soup: 
Origin: Philippines.
Ingredients: Chicken parts, chicken broth, ginger, garlic, spices, green sliced papayas, hint of fish sauce.

Chicken & Black Beans Sauce:
Origin: China
Method: Wok Fried
Ingredients: Slices of chicken, veggies, garlic, ginger, fermented black bean sauce, sesame oil, oyster sauce.

Chicken Katsu:
Origin: Japan
Method: Deep Fried
Ingredients: Chicken thighs w/out bones, salt and pepper, flour dredge, egg wash, panko flakes. Served with a ready or homemade katsu sauce.

Chicken Hekka:
Origin: Japan/Hawaii
Method: Braise
Ingredients: (varies) Chicken pieces, oil, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sugar, veggies, long rice noodles, oyster sauce, sesame oil.

Chicken Chow Mein:
Origin: China/Hawaii
Method: Wok Stir Fried
Ingredients: Chow mein noodles, chicken pieces, veggies, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, scallions, sesame oil.

Chicken Luau:
Origin: Hawaii
Method: Stew
Ingredients: Oil, chicken pieces, Hawaiian sea salt, garlic, pepper, taro leaves, coconut milk, chicken broth.

Chicken Teri:
Origin: Japan
Method: Deep Fried
Ingredients: Battered chicken chunks, salt and pepper, teriyaki sauce.

Huli Huli Chicken: 
Origin: Hawaii
Method: Rotisserie
Ingredients: Half chickens or quartered, Hawaiian salt, homemade or purchased huli huli sauce.
* Huli (Hoo-lee) in Hawaiian means to turn or flip.

Korean BBQ Chicken:
Origin: Korea/Hawaii
Method: Grilled/Sear
Ingredients: Chicken thighs w/ skin, Korean BBQ sauce marinade.

Chicken Mushrooms:
Origin: American
Method: Braised
Ingredients: Chicken parts, cream of mushroom soup base.

Chicken Charsiu
Origin: China/Hawaii
Method: Stewed or Roasted
Ingredients: Chicken parts, charsiu BBQ sauce.
* These sauces are usually ready made.

Chicken Curry:
Origin: Malaysia/Vietnam/China/India
Method: Stewed
Ingredients: (varies) Chicken parts, curry sauce, spices, veggies.