Food Lover's Guide to the Big Island of Hawaii
With a rich native food culture and influences from Asia and the mainland, Hawaii provides foodies with a myriad of options and experiences. A visit isn’t complete without fresh fish served on a dinner cruise or slow-cooked pork at a traditional luau. Here are a few culinary highlights you won’t want to miss on a visit to the Big Island.
Kalua pork is a Hawaiian staple, and while you can try the dish at many restaurants or homes, don’t miss the chance to taste the traditional pit-roasted version at a luau. Alongside the melt-in-your-mouth pork, sample other signature Hawaiian dishes such as lomi lomi salmon and poi. Experience the island’s Japanese influence with fresh poke —raw fish mixed with vegetables and seasonings served over a bed of rice—and sushi made with locally-caught fish. The big island also has a long history of cattle ranching; try the local beef for breakfast in a dish of loco moco, which includes a patty on rice topped with gravy and an egg.
When you are ready for a sweet treat, be sure to try the island’s famous shave ice, mochi, and chocolate-covered macadamia nuts. Top it all off with a cup of fresh Kona coffee.
- Enjoy an evening of food, dancing, and entertainment at a luau. You’ll have the chance to try traditional dishes made using indigenous cooking methods and learn about the customs and history of this classic Hawaiian feast.
- Tour a coffee plantation, enjoy samples of freshly roasted Kona coffee, and take home beans to brew later or share with friends.
- Take in the beauty of the Hawaiian coast while indulging in fresh seafood on a lunch or dinner cruise.
- Learn how to prepare favorites like poke and mochi in a Hawaiian cooking class.
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