Blog Archives

Oahu’s Triple D – Waiola Shaved Ice – Worth a Trip to Hawaii

This is partially why I keep returning to Honolulu... seriously.

To end my Oahu’s Triple D segment is a trip to Waiola’s Shave Ice.  No, this is not the Waiola Shave Ice that’s constantly advertised on Hawaii Five-0 and not the one with the bakery.

On my previous trip to Honolulu, a local friend introduced me and my hubby to shaved ice.  At first I wasn’t too interested because I imagined it to be like PNE’s snow cone.  Coarse, grainy, rough ice doused in food colouring.

When I arrived, it was part of a corner store.  But there was a line for the shaved ice which is the first good sign. Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – Valerio’s Tropical Bake Shop

Valerio's Tropical Bake Shop in Honolulu. Parking in front and at the back.

I have returned to Valerio’s Tropical Bakery for one thing, its Pineapple Cream Cheese Bun.  The pineapple cream cheese bun is a very simple bun with flavoured filling. The bun itself is very soft and slightly sweet.   Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – Nanding’s Bakery

Once you've tried it, I promise that you will be just as excited as me when you peek into this bag of freshly baked spanish rolls.

Locals will definitely recommend this hole-in-the-wall Filipino bakery Nandings Bakery because of their awesome signature item – SPANISH ROLLS! These buttery soft rolls are small but they are super dangerous to calorie counters.  They just melt in your mouth especially when they are fresh out of the oven.

These photos are taken in the car because THEY DID NOT MAKE IT BACK TO THE HOTEL!!! Read the rest of this entry

Hotel Review – Aston at the Waikiki Banyan

This hotel is one of the many hotels in the Aston chain and also goes by Aston Banyan Waikiki. On Trip Advisor, it is rated as 3 stars.  This is the second time that I’ve stayed at the Banyan.

One thing I learned about Oahu hotels is that is doesn’t matter if it’s 4 stars or 5 stars, the hotels are out dated and old.  Turtle Bay Resort, Royal Hawaiian, Hilton, etc. are 4 stars and above and I can tell you that their standard rooms are similar to 3 stars hotels along the strip.  Only exception is the Halekulani… hope to one day be able to stay there but I was lucky (and gutsy) enough to sneak in and catch a glimpse of the hotel.

There are many reasons to why I returned to the Banyan.  They are:

  • super kid friendly – playpens, cribs are available to rent at no charge (please tip though!).  Upon arrival, kids get a sand bucket/shovel and a Kids Eat Free card at participating restaurants.
  • parking – no valet, parking is charged by the day or week with in/out priveledges.
  • kitchen – fridge, kitchen utensils, there are even BBQ grills in the lounge area to use.
  • fast elevators – I’ve heard complaints about how slow the elevators for Tower I are but I’ve stayed at the rooms in Tower II and their elevators get me to my floor quick… even when I’m on the 36th floor.
  • free internet – it’s not wi-fi, but there’s a cable included.

Booking for both trips had its own hiccups.  But it wasn’t anything that couldn’t be resolved.  Both times, I asked for King size beds and was given Queen size which I swear it’s a bit smaller by Canadian standards (closer to full/double).  Both times, we had to switch rooms to get the bed that we wanted.  The staff are friendly but they work on Hawaiian time and very chilled. Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – Alan Wong’s (Honolulu)

This is one restaurant that I feel strongly recommending friends to go yet I don’t have many photos to share from my past experiences.  It doesn’t matter if you end up loving it or hating it, if you’re looking for a night of fine dining, Alan Wong is a must try.

Maybe I am biased because one of the best dish I have ever tasted is from Alan Wong’s.  It is the fois gras congee with quail egg.  It is not because it’s fois gras, but the texture of the congee is ‘watery thick’ like a rice puree that brought out all the flavours and intensified it.  Does that make sense?

I wish I took a better photo. It seems as though this bowl was made for the congee.

The first time I came was during my honeymoon couple of years ago.  Patch must’ve told them that it was our honeymoon because when we arrived, we had a customized menu with our names printed and the staff’s signatures around it.  It was simple but very touching. We even got a free dessert sampler.

Patch and I each got a free dessert on our honeymoon visit.

There’s also the never ending debate of AW vs. Roys but menus always change and everyone’s perspective on food is different.  Whichever restaurant we all prefer, there’s one thing that we can agree on.  Service is important and AW delivers. Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – The Abalone is a Cheap Dirty Ho

A fresh abalone saying hello. Actually, more like saying good bye as it became my dinner that night.

I used my index finger to stroke it a bit and it became aroused for my camera.  The flesh feels and looks slimy but it’s dry.  It’s firm and what looks like the lips opens and closes its flap when it’s aroused.

The video below is perfect for anyone with an abalone fetish.  Which I don’t have.  I’m more into abalone snuff.  Cutting, chewing, swallowing.

Oahu’s Triple D – Honolulu’s Saturday Farmer’s Market

If you are staying in a condo with a kitchen, it’s worth it to visit Honolulu’s premiere Saturday Farmer’s Market for some fresh goods.  I wasn’t able to eat out every meal when travelling with 2 babies, so we decided to stock up on fresh produce.  One drawback is that we couldn’t cook with lots of spices since it’s not worth it to buy a spice rack for a couple of meals.

The market entrance. We don't know the girls... Kawaii! Whee!

The market is located in parking lot of the Kapiolani Community College.  When you arrive, it is likely that the parking lot is full, but the turnover is high and you’ll find a spot shortly.  I find that Hawaiians are also very polite, if you are waiting for a spot, every car behind you waits patiently.  Unlike Vancouver, where you will either get honked or the cars behind will speed by on purpose. Read the rest of this entry

Oahu’s Triple D – Iyasume Musubi Express

If you have a rental car in Oahu, it’s very likely you will be going on long rides. That day we planned to go to Ko Olina beach and it’s about an hour ride out of the city.  So we needed to pack some quick goodies.  When you have 2 babies with you, it wasn’t an option to pack a romantic picnic basket.  We found Iyasume Musubi next to the King’s Court in Waikiki.

There's no eye catching storefront sign, but you will need to keep an eye out for the menus of the restaurants located inside.

Iyasume also served bento boxes but we got only musubi.  Mainly spam musubi as Patch looooooves spam.  Spam is something that I eww at but somehow I admit I cannot just take one bite whenever I eat something with spam (ie.  instant noodles with spam in Hong Kong, spam musubis, etc).   I don’t buy cans of spam at home though.  It’s like eating a can of msg, really.

Read the rest of this entry