HUAKA‘I MEA‘AI – Sky Garden Restaurant

23 04 2009

There’s a really good restaurant, Sky Garden, at ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center in Hilo. We went on a Friday night and the restaurant was hopping, even though ‘Imiloa was long closed for the night.

Mu-shu Pork        

Mu Shu Pork

Pot Stickers

Pot Stickers

Cashew Chicken

Cashew Chicken

Eggplant

Eggplant with Garlic Sauce

Peanut Butter Desert

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Pie

There were seven of us; four adults and three kids. Everybody was happy.

J: “I’m impressed with this restaurant. The view! In daylight you can see the town and the bay. It’s an interesting place.”

M: “Mu Shu is one of my favorite things, and it didn’t disappoint.”

M, age 8 “I liked the food a lot.”

K, age 12: “I liked the Mu Shu Chicken.” She gave it a thumbs up. (It was actually pork.)

E, age 5, liked to spin the Lazy Susan a little more than was comfortable for her parents, and then try to grab at food as it went by. “I liked the meat and the peanuts,” she said about the Cashew Chicken.

L: “The eggplant in garlic sauce could not be more garlicky. It’s great! This restaurant is owned by the people who used to own Ting Hao, where we used to go all the time and I remember this dish. I am so glad to find it again.”

A: “I liked the garlic eggplant. The egg fried rice was kind of boring; bland. The restaurant is nice, elegant, and has a classy but casual vibe. It’s like the best of Hilo is here.”

K, age 12, liked the Hilo Homemade Ice Cream’s coffee ice cream, which had little pieces of ground-up coffee beans.

Everybody liked the Chocolate Peanut Butter Cream Cheese Pie, which has broken pieces of Reese’s peanut butter cups on top.

Everyone in our group said they would eat at this restaurant again.          PAU

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HUAKA‘I MEA‘AI – Hilo Bay Cafe

2 04 2009

In Hawaiian, Huaka‘i Mea‘ai means “Food Journey.” Food is an important part of life here in Hawai‘i. You know the old joke: “Hawaiians don’t eat until they’re full; they eat until they’re tired.”

We don’t really do that, most of us. But we do take our food seriously.

We’re going to bring you the occasional glimpse of some of our meals on the Big Island. With comments.

E ‘ai kakou! (Let’s eat.)

For our first official Huaka‘i Mea‘ai, we went to the Hilo Bay Cafe for lunch. It’s in an unlikely spot — the Wal-Mart parking lot, in a small strip mall. But it’s a really nice restaurant.

Fish and Chips

Fish & Chips

Kulana Ribeye

Kulana Ribeye

M., on the Kulana Ribeye: “More than enough for lunch. Cooked perfectly. Great sauce. I’d order this again.”

L., on the Fish & Chips: “This was a desperation order. Everybody else was ready to order and I flailed at the last second and ended up with this. It was good; something about the batter made it better than your average f&c.  The tartar sauce was homemade and good. I liked it.”

E., on the Slow-Cooked Barbecue Pork Ribs (not pictured): “Kind of fatty, but still good. The salad and the dressing were good.”

e., (that’s “Little E.,” who’s 5): “Really good ice cream sundae.”                PAU

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