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Saturday, 20 January 2007



This time last week I was over there eating some really good food. More appropriately, ono grindz (?). The memorable meals in Honolulu were at: Sam Choy's BLC, Sam Choy's Diamond Head, Willows, Kaka'ako Kitchen. Of course stopping at Leonard's and Waiola Shave Ice. Yeah, it was an eating trip. Our one day in Hilo included breakfast & dinner at Ken's House of Pancakes, and lunch at Cafe 100. Didn't have enough time to get malasadas at Tex's Drive-In. Did you ever get to eat at Leong's Cafe in Kalihi? I didn't know it had closed.


Hey Toisan - So did you try the Sumo Loco at Ken's??? ;o) I don't like the malasadas at Tex's too dense....Leong's, now that is/was major "old school", good stuff, and great pipikaula! Don't know when you went to Willows, but man, back in the 80's...we loved that place! I'm not a bigfan of Kaka'ako's always been way to inconsistent. Before I moved to the mainland, I lived right down the street from Waiola, it's good stuff. For some reason I like BLC better than Sam Choy's DH, maybe because Alan Wong's is IMHO way better. You did get in some good grindz!


Bravo, Kirk! Heh--I can't be too hard on Texan chili purists since I've been known to wax slightly obnoxious about how nobody outside of New York knows what a proper bagel should be ... however that hasn't stopped me from making some chilis guaranteed to make chili purists run screaming from the room. Like vegetarian chili, for instance. (The original Moosewood Cookbook recipe is excellent IMO.)

I have yet to taste either Cincinati or Hawaiian style chili, but I could totally get into the cumin taste in chili--cumin is such an excellent spice anyway.

wandering chopsticks

Except for the ginger and mayonnaise, looks like my chili recipe. :)

I'd have to say, I do get obnoxious about some foods too. But I'd never spit something out and make a big deal out of it. That's bad form.


hey kirk,

chili look good bro...

can you fed ex some here

i usually crock pot chili the day before to for taste, i can't remember but i think i remember adding a lot of sake and beer to the brew too.. it never hurts i guess...


hey kirk! long time no talk! :) ahhh...chili. i miss that stuff. i never knew that the second location was the one in kaimuki. my grandpa lives down the street on maluhia street...that was the first place i would go when i visited (well, that and leonards! :) )

heh. great post!


Hey Kirk!
Did you hear about the new dish Zippy's came out with? It's the chili loco moco. Sounds innocent enough, but guess how they do it?
1.A big bed of rice
2.Slather a layer of their "secret" housemade mayo (gasp!)
3.Hamburger patty
4.Two eggs
5.and Chili alll over
My God, I felt by heart beating just a bit quicker after reading about their dish. A slater of mayo over rice?! Save us! :)


Perfect! I was just looking for a good chili recipe and your's looks fantastic. Thanks!


hehehe I sure woulda liked to been on dat lunch! ;o) Texans ... ya know, my Mom told me to say nothing if it wasn't nice. So I'm saying NOTHING about Mr. Texas. BUT I will say sumthin bout chili! I've had it all kinds of ways but the best I EVER had was a family dinner at my aunt & uncle's house in New Mexico. I was just a kid and my memory is muddled, but there was green chili and red chili. You were supposed to lay a tortilla on your plate (the tortillas were so huge they hung off the sides of the plates) spread out the chili, then layer on "fixins". Lettuce, cheese, tomatoes, and I don't remember what all else. Anyhow, fast forward to these days, I still adore chili verde (pork, tomatillos, and green colored chilis with pinto beans typically), hot dog chili (would you believe they sell in canned here in NC?), and McCormack (or Shillings) original spice package style (a must in our family for Halloween dinner). Saying there is only one way to make chili is like saying there is only one way to make pot stickers or that plain glazed donuts are the only "true" donuts. Dull dull dull would be our world! All that said, I'm sad I didn't get a chance to try Zippy's or Rainbow's chili when I was there. =o(


that was very impolite of the associate from "T"....almost "broke da mouth" impolite.


Hi Mizducky - I can't complain about having regional, nor other preferences about food. I do however, think it's bad form to "dis" your hosts. That said, I've had to cut down on the cumin in most non-Chinese dishes, since the Missus doesn't care for that flavor in those type of dishes...for some reason she loves cumin(like I do) in Northern Chinese Lamb dishes! Go figure.....

Hi WC - Do you use the bean juice? When I mention that I use the canning juice, I get some really weird looks...I use the bean juice in my Portuguese Bean Soup as well....and when I mention that, well, people tell me it's better if I would not had mentioned that to them!

Hi DCCF - Most crock pot stuff tastes good, and especially good the day after! Beer and sake add some major flavor to food!

Hi Keri - Happy New Year! I've missed you, and hope all is well. Funny, eh? Aina Haina was the first Zippy's...I didn't even know that!

Hi Kathy - That's a bit much...even for me! Though the Missus loves the Chili Loco at Cafe 100, it ain't the cholesterol bomb like what you mentioned!

Hi Lynnea - Well, I hope it turns out's an easy recipe to adjust for personal taste.

Hi Jo - My Mom, when a bit lazy would use those Shilling's mixes, but it was so easy to tell.....just like the "taco meat" seasoning! LOL!

Hi RONW - Leave it up to you, to always make the most interesting...yet funny observation! But yes....we were all cracking up, but you shoulda seen some of the people we had in from a city that starts with 'P', from a state that starts with 'P'!


Hi Kirk:

I too do not care for Zippy's chili. Not enough body and character for me and it seems to be too watery. But my wife and daughter love it. My wife says that the secret ingredient in Zippy's chili is peanut butter. Have you ever heard of that?

wandering chopsticks

Hi Kirk,
Nothing wrong with using bean juice, makes the flavor more concentrated. I tend to drain all my cans though to reduce the sodium content.


Yep, Mill's & I were talking about it earlier. Scratch is best but sometimes you just gotta have... "Beef-a-roni" "Kraft Macaroni & Cheese" "Big Mac" "Ragu, traditional flavor spaghetti sauce from a jar" etc. Every few years, I just gotta have "Suzy Qs". Yet and still, I make the most killer cakes!?!? Is it the masochist in us?


Like JJ, I'd heard that the secret to Zippy's chili is peanut butter. If that's true, they use a gentle touch so as not to overpower the Zippy's with the Skippy's. It's not the kind of chili I make when I'm making my own pot, but Zippy's chili can really hit the spot.


Hi JJ - Peanut butter....I've heard Mayo and Cream of Mushroom soup, but not Peanut Butter. I prefer the chili at Rainbow's to Zippy's, but some of my friends are totally addicted to it.

Hi WC - Actually, I use 2 cans "regular" and one can low sodium...and by using the canning liquid, I don't need to add any additional salt ot the dish.

Hi Jo - LOL! I don't remember the last time I had any of that...but instant ramen.....

Hi Alan - If peanut butter is used, it's probably in a very small amount. I know people who have to hit Zippy's the minute they get off the plane!


You can't forgot about the other "chili"...Tommy's Original. Its in the same category of chili and SOOO good.


they sell zippy's chili here on pizza hut. with like, a giant photo of sam choy holding a pizza out front. when did the you guys take over our pizza hut?!

i'm more inclined to believe that zippy's chili is more like real chili than pizza hut's pizza is like real pizza.


Hoo mama, ever tried Sam Choy's Makawao Chicken Chili recipe? Ono! I'll definitely be trying this one with Spaghetti, rice, and mac salad. ;)


OH yea, instant ramen... I kinda think that stuff has a life of it's own. I like it fried with shredded cabbage and chopped peanuts!

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