03 January 2010

Kamuela/Waikoloa, Hawai'i

Butter and sweetened condensed milk on toast
One of the culinary highlights of Christmas week in Kamuela was that my mother-in-law introduced me to this wonder. Had it on either bread or a bagel nearly every morning. Sooo yummy. Goes great with coffee.

Some crappy ramen place in Waikoloa
Kea's mom was talking up this ramen place in the King's Shops or Queen's Shops or something like that. It turned out crappy. I was fooled in part by the design of their signage. The typeface was clean and modern and led me to expect something of quality. Should've been tipped off by the fact that it was Chinese-owned though. I don't think I've ever been to a Chinese-owned ramen place. Or if I have, they knew enough to make it look Japanese. This one had shoyu containers on the table that just looked like they didn't belong.

Kea's mom ordered tempura ramen and it was so not tempura! It was more Chinese or Local-style battered and fried shrimp. Maybe even like American style? Whatever it was, it was not tempura.

The gyoza was so junk, like not even worth eating. The filling was like unseasoned meat. Kea's mom also ordered fried scallops in seaweed. When it came it was wrapped in bacon instead--and while the menu had said it was $4, we ended up being charge $14. I didn't know about this until we had left; otherwise I totally would have said something. I can't believe neither Kea nor his mom said anything.

I had the spicy pork ramen. I think it was the best although it had way too much pork. Honestly though, I think ramen is hard to mess up. Even if it is crappy, it still fills you up and has that comforting quality.

Still yet, never going back there.

Pizza place in the Fireside Food Court in Kamuela
Kea and I had spent a few hours at the beach and were starving by the time we got back up to Waimea. After our experience in Waikoloa, I was sort of resigned to the fact that we were not in a metropolis, meaning that there isn't the competition to enforce quality control. There are definitely good places to eat on the Big Island, but it seems it's better to stick to the tried and true. I guess to some extent that's true everywhere... anyway, I think pizza, like ramen, is hard to mess up. We ended up grabbing a special: fountain drink, salad bar, and slice of pizza for about $8. It was a good deal. The pizza was not the best--and only cheese and pepperoni were available--but it was enough to fulfill a pizza craving. The salad bar included some nice greens (probably the mix from Costco) and a decent variety of other toppings (e.g. olives, mushrooms).

Yong's in Kamuela

I was really blown away by Yong's. I had been there before but not for awhile. And I think I've become much more knowledgeable about Korean food in Michigan. Yes, it's strange, but I ate a lot more of it in Michigan. Plus before I would always just get meat jun or barbecue chicken. Since living in Michigan, I've become a total convert to the soups and stews. With the cold weather in Waimea I definitely wanted a hot and spicy soup.

I ordered the Yukgaejang (spicy beef stew) and it was so awesome. Definitely spicy--I've developed a tolerance to spicy food so this didn't burn my mouth, but it did tickle the back of my throat and make me cough. I suppose it's not much to say it's better than the yukgaejang I had in Michigan, but that's the only other place I've had it. For sure, the meat was less fatty than in Michigan.

Kea had meat jun and it even smelled high quality; I've never smelled the nice fried egg on the meat jun before. I think it was fried up really well. Or it could be because most times I eat meat jun that's had to survive the drive home from the restaurant...

Anyway, I think Yong's is my favorite place to eat in Waimea... second only to Kea's mom's house.


At 11:52 AM , Blogger MOOGIRL said...

Yong's sounds awesome!

At 9:18 PM , Blogger holly said...

hey it's me, holly. i ventured over to your blog from archi.monkey so i thought i would leave a comment! what is the condensed milk thing? how do you eat it? i loooove condensed milk so this sounds like something i would like...

At 9:32 PM , Blogger Robyn said...

hi holly! yay i have another reader! so basically, you make some toast. then you put butter on it. then you pour some condensed milk on it and spread it out. i went a little light to start with b/c i don't have much of a sweet tooth but balanced out with a cup of coffee, it was not too sweet at all.

i guess you could also transfer the condensed milk to a little tupperware or something and then just spread it with a knife.

i have a feeling this is like old school, like plantation, save money kind of thing.

At 7:47 AM , Blogger holly said...

okay i'll have to try this, i'm always looking for another way to incorporate condensed cream into my meals! condensed cream and coffee YUMMMM!!!!!! (I don't know if you can tell already but from our family, i'm the eater, and kristen, not so much.)
...wasn't sure if you had like melted butter mixed with the condensed cream, but now that i think about it that would be weird... haha

At 10:10 AM , Blogger kristen said...

she is right. she is totally the eater. in contrast, i eat sometimes.


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