Sam Choy Opens Food Truck at Polynesian Cultural Center

The Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC) welcomed renowned chef Sam Choy to the Hukilau Marketplace this weekend with the opening of his new food truck, Sam Choy & Tita’s Seafood & Poke Truck, in the Roulotte Court of outdoor eateries.

Also opening today at the Hukilau Marketplace were So’Da Bomb and Fia Fia Farms, along with My Island Spa, a massage spa station, all of which was in celebration of the Hukilau Marketplace’s second anniversary. Additionally, guests enjoyed live performances by Vaihi and Roots Rockaz, along with fun keiki activities including inflatable slides and face painting.

Located at the entrance to the PCC, the Hukilau Marketplace highlights the traditions of Laie and the North Shore, featuring local cuisine and retail shops that showcase the unique heritage of the area. Admission and parking to Hukilau Marketplace is free to the public.

“Since Hukilau Marketplace opened its doors, our team has been working to find a unique blend of food and retail offerings for our guests,” said Delsa Moe, Vice President of Cultural Presentations of the PCC. “We are pleased to introduce these new additions to our Roulotte Court.”

Also offered at Hukilau Marketplace are Pounders Restaurant, Hapa Home Store, Na Hoku, Jaseboards and Polynesian Wood Carving.

The Roulotte Court features the following:

  • Sam Choy & Tita’s Seafood & Poke Truck – Owned by chef, restaurateur, and television personality Sam Choy, one of the founders of Hawaii Regional Cuisine. This food truck will offer fresh seafood and ono poke.
  • So’Da Bomb – Owner Kalin Uluave will serve a variety of fountain drinks. Guests can add different pumps of flavors to their favorite soft drink.
  • Fia Fia Farms – A must try is the specialty patented Mango Otai. Fia Fia Farms also has fresh fruits to enjoy and bananas to be freshly picked from the bunch.
  • Tita’s Grill – The popular Kahuku eatery run by the local Ah You ‘ohana (family) offers some of their most popular dishes, including generous plate lunches, loco moco, several varieties of burgers, stir-fry, kalbi ribs, and Tahitian steak frit.
  • Island Scoops – Featuring hand-scooped ice cream in local flavors such as Macadamia Nuts and Haupia, as well as traditional options including Rocky Road and Cookies and Cream.
  • Délice Crêpes – Sweet or savory? Choose from a selection of creative crêpes, such as the S’More with marshmallow, chocolate, and graham crackers; the Tahiti with coconut; the Butter Cup with peanut butter, chocolate and banana; or customize your own from a choice of 14 crêpes or waffles and 20 toppings.
  • Island Breeze – Concoct unique flavor combinations at the self-serve flavor station. Choose from pina colada, strawberry, mango and banana. Then add condensed milk or a scoop of ice cream to create a truly delectable and refreshing treat.

Hello Kitty Cafe Truck Coming to Hawaii

delete-helloThis Summer, the hugely popular Hello Kitty Cafe Truck will be crossing the Pacific Ocean to make its first-ever visit to Hawaii.

The special three-day appearance will take place from Friday, June 17 through Sunday, June 19 at Ala Moana Center in Honolulu. The “mobile vehicle of cuteness and sweets” will serve goodies from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily to Hello Kitty fans of all ages.

Treats on board the Hello Kitty Cafe Truck will include a macaron box set with one surprise Sanrio character macaron inside, a delicious three-piece Hello Kitty cookie set in adorable packaging, a four-pack of mini cakes, and a pink bow-shaped water bottle. In addition to the goodies, a Hello Kitty Cafe mug, a supercute pink Hello Kitty Cafe T-shirt and the pop icon’s signature bow headband will also be available to purchase.

The Hello Kitty Cafe Truck will be stationed in front of the Sanrio store, making it easy for fans to continue their experience by stopping by the retail location.

The Hello Kitty Cafe Truck is the first-of-its-kind food service venture for Sanrio in the U.S. The cafe truck made its first official debut at Hello Kitty Con in October 2014 and has been rolling up to festivals & events ever since, spreading Sanrio’s message of happiness, friendship and fun while offering yummy goodies to Hello Kitty fans and foodies.

Eat the Street Celebrates Turning One with Luau

Eat The Street

Eat the Street turns a year old this month, and organizers are celebrating the milestone with a “Luau Food Truck Festival” on Friday, Jan. 27 in Kakaako.

The “luau” will feature an array of dishes and Hawaiian-style activities, music, and entertainment. Food trucks expected to participate include Kai’s Pasteles, India Café, Koi 808, Elena’s Restaurant, Extreme Tacos, Ono Pops, Simply Ono, Hawaii’s Fried Musubi, Chimney Cakes, Alonzo’s, Why’s, Grandma G’s Kitchen and Soul Patrol, among others.

Music will be mixed by Shogunai’s DJ crew, and there will be a monthly art battle hosted by Lightsleepers.

Friday’s “Luau Food Truck Festival” will take place from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. at 805 Ala Moana Boulevard, mauka of Kakaako Waterfront Park. Admission is free. Organizers suggest the public seek street parking on Ilalo Street and other nearby blocks.

Past events, held most often on the last Friday of every month, have drawn thousands of people and more than 30 food trucks and street vendors in Honolulu. “Eat the Street” is organized by, which host large and small food truck events and assists organizers, businesses and schools in booking events and catering needs.

For more information, call 808-780-9288, or connect with StreetGrindz on Twitter at @StreetGrindz or on Facebook. Partners include Kamehameha Schools and Nonstop Honolulu.

Zaratez Mexicatessen

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During my previous visits to Zaratez, I’ve tried the burrito plate, mulitas, and the tacos, all of which that will take you to Mexico and you won’t have to pay for plane fare.

According to the couple standing next to me in line who are of Mexican descent from Los Angeles, and who have been living here for a while, Zaratez is the best Mexican food in Honolulu hands down.

But today, during my visit to Zaratez for a snack and to talk story with Paul Zarate, the owner, informed me that his last day of business will be this Friday, October 28th due to financial reasons. Even though Zaratez won 2011 Ilima Award’s Critic’s Choice for the best Mexican food in Honolulu, it could not save it from the present economic conditions.

But, as one door closes, another one opens, with Paul focusing his energies on catering special events and to search for a new restaurant location in the Honolulu area.

Located across the Pan Am building on Kapiolani Blvd., Zaratez will be open today through Friday from 11AM until all the food has been sold.

Please follow Paul Zarate on his quest to satisfy his customers gastronomic cravings on Twitter at @Zaratez and Facebook.

The last picture in this post are two chicken tacos that will be my last order from Zaratez for a while.

Ono To Go

During the past few weeks, I had the distinct pleasure of dining at the Ono To Go food truck on several occasions. Through the coconut wireless, I heard that the food here is unique in taste, with an ambiance to match, should you choose to eat on location.

From afar on your first visit, you will notice the contemporary art displayed on the food truck, and, as you get closer, the smell of burning kiawe wood for the barbecue permeates the air. As we all know, we tend to eat with our eyes, but, the aroma of the various meats (Pulehu short ribs, chicken, kal bi & pork chops) sizzling on the kiawe barbecue will have your appetite grow exponentially, as it did on my first visit and subsequent visits.

I noticed that to keep a high standard of quality, the homemade chili pepper water is kept on ice as a condiment for the ahi poke bowl.

The food here is excellent with a staff that is friendly and very accommodating. As you view the picture gallery, you will want to visit this food truck as soon as possible to satisfy not only your appetite, but, your curiosity as well.

The On to Go food truck is located in a parking lot of an entertainment establishment on the corner of Makaloa and Sheridan Streets between Walmart and Kapiolani Boulevard. By the way, they don’t take reservations or credit cards, but, they will accept take-out orders via the phone and on Twitter. Until next time…



On the Web:

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Tacoako Tuesday Grows

Tacoako Tuesday

Tacoako Tuesday,” A weekly gathering of food trucks in Kaka’ako, welcomes another vendor today: T.I.K.I. Truck, run by traveling chef and mortgage broker Abe Jazmmin. Mari Taketa of Nonstop Honolulu interviewed Abe on video last week:

Also on hand today will be Tacoako Tuesday organizer Jesse DeRamos of Flip’t Out Eats, and Camille’s on Wheels. Sending regrets are Fairy Cakes. No word yet from Xtreme Tacos or Shogunai Tacos.

Photo by Ed Oshiro/

Food vendors sought for Eat St. show, app

Eat St. on OahuThe creators of a street food television show and iPhone app are looking for new vendors to feature.

Paperny Films and Invoke Media, the partnership behind Eat St., say that they’ve built “the most comprehensive list of street food vendors in North America,” and are hoping to see it continue to grow.

“Since the launch of our iPhone app and TV show, both products have been doing well,” writes Invoke Media intern Justine Yu. “We’re beginning to film a second season of the show… [and] we’re encouraging vendors across North America to enter their cart in our database to increase the chances of being featured on television.”

The Eat St. mobile app (see my review on Nonstop Honolulu), which marked 100,000 downloads a few weeks ago [PDF], helps vendors connect with their customers and helps customers find vendors anywhere in North America. It features full profiles of each vendor who signs up, including location, type of food, hours of operation, menus, specials and Twitter feeds.

Street food vendors, including food truck owners, are encouraged to claim their businesses in the database.

Claim Your Cart

As for the television show, Eat St. consistently ranked among the top 10 programs on Food Network Canada. The show airs Wednesdays at 9:30pm ET/10:30pm PT on Food Network Canada and Tuesdays at 8PM ET on The Cooking Channel in the United States.

Producers hope Season 2 will feature vendors in Hawaii, Brooklyn, Philadelphia, Florida, Georgia, California, Portland, the Midwest, and Canada.

About Eat St.

“Eat St. is a lip-smacking celebration of North America’s tastiest, messiest, and most irresistible street food. From Tijuana-style tacos served out of an Airstream trailer and pizzas baked in a brick oven on wheels, to classic hot dogs with all the fixings and sirloin burgers slathered in bacon jam — food cart fare is the most delicious trend going. The stars of the show are the vendors — food mavericks with creative takes on mobile meals and inspiring stories.”