Waves crash in white noise, something from the Edo period. The landscape is lush and green and the mountains rise above the Pacific in dramatic fashion. Big swells, the shade of the banyan trees, and the Barack Obama Presidential Library. I finally made it, Oahu, one of the several islands that make up Hawaii, I always thought they seemed to be floating, and I have this same feeling now.
I had asked a friend to take me to what islanders might consider an authentic place to eat. So here we are, she usually pushes the gray beamer, but now it stands still, traffic. On an Island this size, there are only so a many routes to take, and this ones under constructions. After some route changes, and sitting in more traffic, we finally make it Tanioka’s Seafoods & Catering.
Tanioka’s sits in a strip mall in Waipahu, an area in greater Honolulu. It sits next to a seven-eleven and sans the palm trees and great weather, for a second I think I’m somewhere on Long Island. The sensation dissipates quickly as we make our way through the door.
Its around lunch time, but from what I hear, you should always expect lines. Fear not the line moves quickly. As we make our way up to the savory selections of seafood, we first pass the dessert case. My friend suggests a cake made up of three layers. The first is haupia, a coconut confection usually consumed on its own, sweetened poi a staple made from taro root, and on the bottom a kind of cookie crust.
We order fish cakes, and a octopus salad. From the various poke selections, cubed raw tuna, we go with one that is interlaced with a savory crunchy seaweed. We grab a six pack and head to the beach. All the dishes are enjoyable, most notably the Poke. Beyond this, on offer is mainly Hawaiin seafood staples, lunch items such as musubi, as well as tempura.
Later in the evening we take the Haupia dessert from the fridge, I decide I will extend my stay after all.