Thursday, January 12, 2012

Shave ice on O'ahu

Nothing can beat a shave ice after day at the beach. Or a hike. Or a run. Or when a friend is visiting from the mainland. Or any hot afternoon. Or...the list goes on. 

That said, here are my favorite places on Oahu for shave ice.

I grew up going to Waiola Shave Ice (the original location, on Waiola Street). So that will always be my #1. Here's there new location in Kapahulu.

Waiola is renowned for the fine texture of shave ice - it just melts in your mouth. You don't have to chew on any ice granules. I like the lilikoi - lihingmui flavor combo, with lilikoi syrup (the seeds in the pic below) on top. YUM. I want one just thinking about it.

My 2nd favorite is a newer entrant to the market - Taiwanese style shave ice. It's the stuff you get after eating hot pot at Sweet Home Cafe, or in the picture here at City Cafe. City Cafe is a cute, tiny little place on Makaloa across from Ala Moana Shopping Center. You get to pick your flavor and your toppings: I got brown sugar syrup with mochi balls, coffee jelly and flan.

#3: Shimazu Shave Ice
This one has actually been around forever, but I'd never been until recently. They are popular for their trendy shave ice syrups, like red velvet and mojito, which I believe are all made in-house.

This is a small serving. It's massive! I think this was red velvet (super creamy tasting, like magic) and mango.

Inside the store; Mr Shimazu himself

#4) Old school: Your Kitchen in Kaimuki
Your Kitchen is a tiny little hole in the wall on 10th avenue known for their boiled pork plate lunch. But they also make a mean shave ice.

#5) New school: Snow Factory
I'm curious where this trend came from. Korea? Japan? Anyhoo, it's a block of flavored ice (can be dairy based) that is shaved into paper thin sheets, piled into a bowl, and topped with yummy treats.

Interior: feels like I'm in Korea listening to Korean pop music
 Green tea ice topped with condensed milk, mochi balls and azuki beans. Drier in your mouth than regular shave ice, but still really tasty.
1) Waiola Shave Ice

2135 Waiola St
Honolulu, HI 96826
(808) 949-2269
2) City Cafe

1518-F Makaloa St
Honolulu, HI 96814
(808) 398-7598
 3) Shimazu Store
330 N School St
Honolulu, HI 96817
(808) 371-8899
4) Your Kitchen
1423 10th Ave
Honolulu, HI 96816
(808) 203-7685

5) Snow Factory
McCully Shopping Center
1960 Kapiolani Blvd, Ste 115

Honolulu, HI 96826
(808) 946-7669


karlantonette said...

i wish i had found your blog sooner! i'm off to oahu in 2 days!

what do you think of Matsumoto's shaved ice?

*pcc* said...

hope you enjoy your trip and find some recommendations from my blog :) let me know what you end up enjoying!

matsumoto's is great for the north shore experience, but i'd choose any of the places above for the shave ice experience (texture of the ice in particular)

karlantonette said...

perfect! we planned to check out north shore that day (polynesian cc, giovannis shrimp truck, laniakea beach and matsumotos).

i'm all about food and activities... not just chillin out on the beach ;) what do you think of this itinerary:

1. we arrive in the afternoon, so possibly dinner at nico's
2. helena's, pearl harbor, morimoto
3. iyasume musubi cafe, haunama bay, paradise cove
4. hanks, int'l marketplace and hopefully hike diamond head. still debating on dinner at roy's. opinion?

*pcc* said...

that sounds like a great itinerary! i haven't been to roys recently so can't comment on it, but definitely let me know how you like it...