Saturday, August 31, 2019

this week

Friday, met up with V, she had the "last" of her avocados to share.

We had lunch at Ohana Hale Marketplace (OHM).

It is the perfect place to get out of the heat & humidity.

We tried a ginger tumeric smoothie from Miko and the Juice...delicious...lots of citrus in this and the ginger and tumeric are pretty strong in a good way.

And bun cha gio from L & K Pho & Sandwich, a shop which Jalna wrote about here.

I thought the spring rolls were a little sweet.

The lady working there calls everyone "honey" and she gives lots of spring rolls for this dish.

She runs the place by herself so it does take some time for orders to come out...be prepared.

Or like she told the guy before us, "next time you call ahead, so you no need wait, honey"

In the middle of the marketplace are seats and tables to enjoy your food, there is also live entertainment.

I'm glad we got to try this place and look forward to trying other booths.

Saturday, Wen and I went to Royal Kitchen to get our manapua fix.

We prefer the baked type.

I also tried their coconut filled one and lup cheong.

All so good!

Dinner was at Kalapawai Cafe in Kapolei...little did we know that the menu goes kind of "fancy" after 17:00....

I ordered their watermelon salad...not quite what I had envisioned...

My version would have had salad greens (maybe arugula or baby leaf), "cubed" watermelon, feta cheese "sprinkles", the sprinkle of mac nuts and balsamic drizzle...

Afterwards we went next door to Lanikai Juice...where I ordered the Kailua Monkey (banana, peanut butter, organic soy milk, chocolate whey protein, honey)...

next time I'm having "this" for dinner...

Sunday, Wen and I went to Rainbow's for lunch...I had their BBQ Beef Sandwich and a slush.

So so good!

How awesome are these watermelon carvings Satoshi saw at the Ikegami Festival?


Dinner was at Aunty Marian's where we had Sam's Club pizza...during the year, the fam has been comparing Sam's and Costco's pizzas.

Sam's is the winner because their crust and toppings have a balanced ratio.

Going home, there was a stabbing on the freeway, WT? luckily, I got off the freeway and took the back roads down to Nimitz Highway instead of sitting in traffic...took this photo of the sunset before we got in the car....

Monday, Aunty Merle gave us a dragon fruit....it was my first time to peel this and luckily, youtube had a tutorial.

I love technology!

Tuesday, Malia has been hiding in the back of my closet, I guess because it is quiet and dark there and also because Aunty Kat has no clue as to where she is...I swear she disappeared...

Wednesday, met up with Flickr friend, Rex...every summer we've been trying to eat at W & M, but always end up elsewhere, finally, we had lunch there, parking is always krazy here, but we were both lucky to each get a stall.

I had the cheeseburger...so good! while Rex had their HAL special.

Always fun talking with Rex, he's super tech savvy and keeps me up to date on things regarding iPhones and such.

Thursday, got an email from the realtor, he will be mass mailing some realtors and planning to have an open house on the Sunday after Labor Day. (Hoping this will spark some interest in our property)

Lunch was from Roast Duck Kitchen...this tiny shop mainly sells roast duck, roast pork, roast chicken and char siu.

I got their roast chicken plate and a gau gee (long fried won ton).

The chicken was tender and very moist.

And I also enjoyed the gau gee, it is stuffed to the gills!

Bummer that the rice was really dry and the cabbage underneath the chicken really oily.

Still, I'm glad I tried this place and there was definitely enough food for two meals...I want to go back to try the cake noodle with oyster sauce chicken and char siu.

That was more or less my week...it is still gross and humid.

It is the end of August, seems so fast, yet it doesn't.

Hoping we'll get an offer in the coming weeks that I am here...have a nice weekend.

Miko and the Juice
333 Ward Avenue (inside OHM)
Honolulu, Hawaii
Phone: 808.861.5046
Hours: 10:00-20:00 (Mondays-Saturdays), 10:00-17:00 (Sundays)

L & K Pho & Sandwich
333 Ward Avenue (inside OHM)
Honolulu, Hawaii
Phone: 808.722.9730
Hours: 10:00-20:00

Roast Duck Kitchen
99-115 Aiea Heights Drive, Aiea Shopping Center 2nd floor
Aiea, Hawaii
Phone: 808.486.0005
Closed Mondays
Hours: 9:00-17:00

Saturday, August 24, 2019

this week

Friday, met up with Instagram friend @cre808 ...turns out we went to the same high school but different graduating class, still, small world yeah?!

It was fun talking with her.

She was nice to give us all this omiyage (thank you!) and introduce us to Yuzu Jelly Soda from Uproll Cafe.

Forgot Friday was a holiday and I was thankful she could meet up on her day off (Thank you!)

Saturday, my brother and I did some errands.

Dinner was a solo pupu party...cole slaw, ahi limu poke (tuna with a type of seaweed), oyster sauce poke, chips and Maui Brewing's Coconut Hiwa Porter.

Sunday, the big day!

Vacuumed and got the house ready for the Open House.

BFF Wen, let me hang out with her until 17:00.

When I got home the realtor left us a note...11 people came and 2 seem interested....crossing fingers the house sells quickly!

Dinner was from Palisades Drive Inn...mini sweet sour spareribs.

Monday, met up with family friend D at Chubbies.

Always fun talking story with him. (Thank you!)

Afterwards I roamed the aisles of Whole Foods in Kaka'ako...got some items from their salad bar for dinner.

Tuesday, lunch from Uproll Cafe.

Tried their Ahi Lover...fresh ahi (tuna), green onion, cucumber, takuwan (pickled radish), ginger sauce...I added carrots, lettuce and fried onions...and also got a yuzu jelly soda.

This is a massive futomaki (literally fat roll!)

So good with all the "goodies" in it, want to try some of the other items on their menu.

Wednesday, lunch with Jalna and Mich.

It has been awhile since we've been able to get together.

We met up at Goma Tei.

I tried their Won Ton Tan Tan...meh, I'm a ramen snob.

Their housemade noodles seemed a bit dry almost like wheat pasta sometimes can be and the tan tan soup a bit watery.

Their won ton are delicious, but HUGE filled with shrimp and other ingredients.

Jalna shared some of her handmade cards as well as some omiyage from her trip to Hokkaido. (Thank you!)

Mich shared some dark chocolates and 'ulu chips. (Thank you!)

It was nice to spend time with them and catch up on things.

In the afternoon was a 2nd showing for a couple that came to the Sunday Open House...We'll see what happens

Dinner with BFF, Wen at La Tour Cafe.

This time around I tried their Thit Khia Loaded Fries : coconut juice braised pork, white sauce, carrot & daikon pickles, cucumber, red onions, fried garlic, cilantro

Too bad they didn't serve this in a bigger container, it was so hard to eat!

Loved the braised pork, which kind of reminded me of the sweet char siu I grew up with...but, I would've enjoyed this if there were more chunky pieces rather than sparse and thinly sliced pieces.

Their fries are super crispy and delicious.

Thursday, drove out to Wahiawa because I wanted to check out Taqueria El Ranchero.

This restaurant is open from 7:00 in the morning!

They serve breakfast everyday from 7:00-noon.

I know if I lived closer, I would be picking up breakfast from this place (often).

I ordered their Burrito Grande...I chose chorizo which is made in house and is spicy!

I also chose black beans...the burrito comes with pico de gallo, guacamole, sour cream, rice and cheese.

It was so HUGE, that I had it for 2 meals.

I also tried watermelon agua fresca (literally fresh water) for the first time.

They make this in house too and while it was a little too sweet, with the gross humidity this really hit the spot!

I hope to go back to try some other things on their menu.

All in all, heat and humidity were pretty evil this week. Not as bad as Japan, but pretty close.

More photos here if you are interested.

Hope it is cooler where you are, have a nice weekend.

Uproll Cafe
Pearl Highlands Center Food Court
Pearl City, Hawaii
Phone: 808.567.7655
Hours: 11:00-20:00 (Monday-Saturdays), 11:00-18:00 (Sundays)

Goma Tei
Kahala Mall
Honolulu, Hawaii
Phone: 808.732.9188
Hours: 11:00-21:30 (Mondays-Thursdays), 11:00-22:00 (Fridays & Saturdays), 11:00-21:00 (Sundays)

Taqueria El Ranchero
823 California Avenue
Wahiawa, Hawaii
Phone: 808.621.9000
Hours: 7:00-24:00 (Mondays-Fridays), 7:00-26:00 (Saturdays-Sundays)

Saturday, August 17, 2019

update

Friday, some "me" time...I went to see this movie...(photo from wikipedia)


It was my first time in an IMAX theatre where the chairs reclined (glad I was the first one in the theatre so I could take some photos).



Late lunch...Tanioka's ahi patty musubi.

Dinner was a solo pupu party (boiled peanuts & mochiko chicken from Tanioka's, salad, ume arare & Waikiki Brewing's black strapp molasses porter)

When you first open the can, you can really smell the molasses.

Saturday, lunch with BFF Wen and friend Steph at Assagio's...meatball sandwich (Thanks for lunch Wen)

It was nice spending some time with Steph and Wen.

Dinner was at the PC Bon Dance with Val...this was at the church that my mom used to be a member of.

Their congregation is getting older and smaller, so it was sad to see how little baked goods they had to sell and how small the crowd for the Bon Dance was.

Dinner was chili rice and some andagi.

Sunday, dinner at Aunty Marian's was an assortment of pupus and salad.

It was nice to see Aunty's friends, Mary Jo and Billie Jean.

Monday, the photographer and the realtor came to take photos of the house.

While the photographer took photos of the exterior of the house, the realtor and I opened the windows, shades, turned on the lights, prepping for the interior shots.

10 minutes or so and they were done.

Lunch was from The Elephant Shack, this time around I tried the Yum Pla...fried fish tossed in fresh chili-lime jus with cilantro, red onions, scallion, grape tomatoes served w/jasmine rice.

This was so good! The fish had a thin batter and was fried nicely.

I had this for 2 meals.

Wednesday, I have been sleeping in the living room because it has been humid and the living room has the ceiling fan.

Sleeping on the sofa next to a window is not good, especially when your "furry niece" decides to use you as a springboard to look out said window to check out the cats or mongoose?! roaming about outside at 4 a.m.!

And while I thought I was through purging, my brother and I whittled down some of the stuff that was still in the cupboards.

When my mom renovated the house, she definitely built her dream kitchen, filling it with her gadgets and containers.

She also made storage to fit EVERYTHING, so her cupboards went DEEP! and WIDE...she had a LOT of cupboards.

2 counter tops filled with things packed in the backseat and trunk of the car...

The guy working at Salvation Army was snarky, probably having a bad day...yelling at one person donating things to put their items onto the loading dock.

Yelling at me that I should've put everything into boxes because they will get injured because of all the glass items...geez.

Lunch was from Nanding's.

Chicken empanada and macapuno (coconut strings) ensamada.

How have I not known about macapuno?!

Though it is different from desiccated coconut...more gelatinous...a bit too sweet from the syrup the coconut strings are packed in.

Still, I'm glad I got to try it.

The realtor sent the photos of the house, it came out nice, if I do say so.

Since I cannot use the photographer's photos, check out my photos here.

Thursday, the house went on the market.

Open house this Sunday.

After that, the realtor gives us 1 day notice when he has an appointment to show and we need to be cleaned and ready...stress!

A trip to the library to bring in a few more items to donate.

Lunch with Aunty Marian and Aunty Viv at Hamada General Store.

When my cousin P saw my post, she commented, "Again? How many times have you been there?"

Yes, if you've been keeping track this is my third time there in the three weeks that this place has been open...

This time around I tried the Fried Ahi Katsu...this had heat, sweet and savory, they should make this into a sandwich!

V, also said she's been here a couple more times after we went last Thursday.

Hope this place will continue to succeed.

Basically this was my week...the humidity as well as the heat are still lingering, though we did get some rain Thursday night.

It's a holiday today, Admissions Day.

Oh, and if you were wondering, that missing troll was spotted in Aunty Viv's garden (hope this made you smile).

Have a nice weekend.

Saturday, August 10, 2019

this week

Oh em gee this week was so hot and humid, it was pretty miserable.

But, that didn't stop me from enjoying all sorts of different foods.

Friday, I had my solo pupu party...chicken lumpia from Ba-le, furikake popcorn from Island Popper, Down to Earth Salad Bar & Underwood Rose.

Island Popper, who had a food truck, recently opened a shop in Kalihi.

Their parking is horrendous. Dunno that I would go back to that shop, would probably look for some of their other vendors who sell their product instead.

Saturday lunch at Ruscello with Mineko-san!

She too is going through some danshari (purging), it was nice to get together with her and share our experiences.

She had the seared ahi salad and steak barley soup.

I ordered the Shrimp Polenta salad (wild shrimp, petite tomatoes, warm polenta croutons,
parmesan cheese crisp, creamy garlic vinaigrette
).

So good!

We also had dessert.

Mineko had their Creme Brulee.

I had their chocolate chip cookie topped with gelato.

I had envisioned a firmer cookie...this was super chocolatey!

Mineko-san also gave me all these chocolate goodies from Pierre Marcolini.

Thank you Mineko-san for lunch, the chocolates and just for a great day!

Saturday night dinner was with BFF Wen at Cheesecake Factory in Kapolei.

Our orders took an hour!

This avocado toast was HUGE but really delicious, I think it was all the lemon squeezed on top that made it tasty!

Some mix up in the kitchen and with the servers...Wen got a free dessert to take home!

Sunday brunch was with blog reader Ryan and his wife S at Piggy Smalls.

We shared the LFC (Laotian Fried Chicken)...sour, sweet, spicy...so good!

I ordered the Burmese Tea Salad.

I have been seeing Burmese Tea Salad here and there on the internet and wanted to try.

It was nice to watch the wait staff explain and mix all the various ingredients in.

Green papaya, tomato, garlic, sesame, sprouting seeds, preserved lemon, serrano chili, fermented lahpet (tea leaves) dressing...the sprouting seeds were hard.as.rock. like eating unpopped popcorn, I would have preferred this to be ground a bit, but overall I loved trying this, it was puckery and perfect for the heat and humidity we've been having.

I also ordered the Go Get 'Em Tiger drink which was turmeric, lemon, ginger and soda water (no photo)...super refreshing, I would love to recreate this!

S had their Truffle Katsu Burger.

Portobello stuffed with truffle shuffle, american cheese, sriracha-lime onions, lettuce, tomato, awesome mustard sauce, brioche bun...it looked good and S also added an egg to her burger!

Ryan had their Brisket Banh Mi with Pho Dip.

Smoked brisket, pickled mustard seeds, sriracha-lime onions, awesome sauce, on La Tour baguette with a side of our signature pho broth & farm salad.

The sandwich was massive (but looked delicious), nice thick cuts of brisket...Ryan also added some noodles to his pho broth.

Dessert was churro french toast that S & I shared.

It kind of reminded us of a cinnamon sugar malasadas.

Sweet bread soaked in kona coffee custard, tossed in cinnamon brown sugar, white chocolate yogurt cremeaux, toasted cacao nib

Not too sweet, very delicious.

Not only did Ryan and S treat me to brunch, but they also gave me all these foodie goodies...a lettuce assortment with edible flowers, lychee, mamaki tea, granola, honey, dressing and avocados from Ryan's mom's house.

It was so nice catching up with them, I hope they'll travel to Japan soon!

Aunty Viv sent photos of Mom's orchids.

So happy they are adapting and that she adopted them...thank you Aunty!

Huge red onion I bought at Target...only $.99!

It was me and my brother in charge of Sunday dinner this past week.

Let me tell you, it is not easy cooking for more than 2 people!

We had make your own taco salad.

I mixed in some butternut squash with the ground beef to "stretch" it out a bit.

Aunty Merle also brought some of her baby leaf mixed greens. (Thank you!)

I made a cherry clafoutis and Aunty Merle also brought an Ube (purple sweet potato) coconut upside down cake which was a promotion item going on at Foodland.

We were kind of disappointed that there wasn't more "ube" flavor...

Even though our dining area was so so hot, I'm glad we were able to have dinner there together, as it is probably the last time before the house goes on the market.

Monday was my Mom's 7 year memorial (actually 6 years by regular calendar, 7 by Japanese calendar).

It seems so long ago yet it doesn't.

I also visited my Dad at Punchbowl.

Since I was in the area, I went to check out Satoshi's favorite view spot.

I had "lunch" at Chubbies Burgers.

They recently posted that they got an outdoor umbrella to sit under...well, it didn't really help with the heat and humidity, but at least I wasn't getting the direct sun rays.

I had their chubb fries..crinkle cut fries topped with cheddar cheese, grilled onions and their fry sauce (kind of like a spicy 1000 island)...these were sinfully rich.

I would get their plain next time though.

Since I was nearby, I stopped into the Ward location of Whole Foods...I picked up some local porters to try as well as this ice cream sandwich.

I should've known that driving home (in traffic) would result in a melted ice cream sandwich...but, this was so good after those fries...eep!

AND a great way to take my mind off of this awful heat!

Since I totally indulged, dinner was a pretty salad using the edible flower and lettuce assortment from Mari's Gardens. (Thanks Ryan & S!)

The lychee also from Mari's Gardens was super sweet and juicy!

Tuesday I made another trip to the Salvation Army.

Afterwards, I bought a mixed plate to be divided into 2 meals.

BBQ beef, fried chicken and mahi mahi...I opted for "slaw" which turned out to be just shredded cabbage.

Next time I'll try their mac salad.

Lunch was their chili (rice) bowl.

The humidity has been so brutal that a slush was necessary too...

Wednesday, I caught The Bus in to Waikiki to lunch with Greg and Val.

Since the last time I rode The Bus, they've changed their system.

You cannot transfer on one fare anymore...the fare itself went up from $2.50 to $2.75...the best deal is to get their "one day pass" which lets you ride all day for $5.50.

I plan to get the monthly bus pass ($70) the next time I'm here.

Whenever I have lunch with Greg and Val, we have a time limit (only an hour), so the place we eat at has to be fast and close by to the office.

We like Ginza Bairin because the food is good, relatively fast and they also give a Kama'aina (local) discount.

I always get the tonkatsu sandwich because it doesn't come with miso soup, only a salad. (I don't like to drink miso soup too much in Hawaii (the weather is too blazing to be drinking soup!))

The heat and humidity had me craving foods that were sour...I tried Musubi Iyasume's ume musubi for dinner.

They put so much ume paste in there...love!

Thursday, I met up with V.

She had more avocados to share.

Bummer the place we had intended on lunching at was closed.

I introduced her to Hamada General Store, which was close by.

She had their Kimchee Rueben (Pastrami, Marbled Rye, Swiss Cheese, Kimchi, Garlic Aioli)...it looked huge but good!

And I had their Tonkatsu Sandwich (Breaded Pork Loin, Asian Slaw, Tsukemono Aioli, Toasted Brioche Bun, Tonkatsu Sauce, Hot Mustard)...shh! I had tonkatsu 2 days in a row...

Their katsu is thin like schnitzel...delicious on the brioche bun.

V shared her avocados as well as some skincare items and arare! (Thank you V!)

After lunch, I went to Kahala Whole Foods.

I picked up some items from their salad bar...it was my 1st time trying their salad bar and I would definitely get it again.

I also picked up Grandpa Mui's Li Hing Powder, this is supposed to be "healthier" with no artificial sweeteners or colorings...looking forward to try this.

And to round out the week...I have been waiting for a sunset like this....link to see other photos here

Makes me appreciate Hawaii, the day, the week, friends and family.

Have a nice weekend.

Mari's Gardens
94-415 Makapipipi Street
Mililani, Hawaii
Phone: 808.625.2800
Closed Sundays
Hours: 9:00-17:00 (Mondays-Fridays) 8:00-16:00 (Saturdays)

The Cheesecake Factory
Ka Makana Ali'i Shopping Center
Kapolei, Hawaii
Phone: 808.670.2666