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Notes from Kathie & Cheryl's annual Kauai trip

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Mar 9th, 2015, 05:05 PM
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Notes from Kathie & Cheryl's annual Kauai trip

I don't usually write reports on our annual Kauai trip, but after reading a couple of recent trip reports, I realized that our knowledge might be helpful to new visitors to Kauai. We have been vacationing on Kauai annually for the past 8 years.

We always stay in the Poipu Beach area, as we own weeks at the Marriott Waiohai Beach Club. We have been here three weeks this year, will be here for four weeks next year (ah, I love retirement!) I already posted a brief report about the Allerton Gardens, which we love, but this is more a report about everyday practicalities.

We are in a condo unit, with a full kitchen, and eat in for half of our dinners and all of our breakfasts. So grocery shopping is important to us. We are the sort of people who buy organic and local as much as possible, so want to do so on vacation as well.

Groceries and Fresh produce: No better place to get fresh, local produce than the Sunshine Markets! There is one in Koloa every Monday at noon - wonderful fresh tropical fruits, great vegetables, etc. We always buy avocados, papayas and limes, plus apple bananas and we love the fresh lettuce (especially a couple of people who grow red butter lettuce), and can often find nice vegetables like green beans. Sueoka's in Koloa also carries some local produce - often green onions, green beans, snow peas, etc. They used to carry Kauai eggs, but have stopped because they are so expensive. We love good eggs and are very willing to pay almost $10 a dozen for the pasture-raised eggs. Big Save in Koloa does carry them now and Costco has them sometimes. Big Save does carry the fresh, wild Kauai shrimp as does Costco.

We love the Anhola Granola, which is available at both Sueoka's and at Big Save as well as at Long's.

The other sunshine market we go to is at the Kukui'ui Shopping center. It calls itself a Gourmet Market as it has prepared foods as well as produce. The Pie Lady is always there - yum.

There is a Living Foods store at the shopping center. We find what they carry to be somewhat variable. They do have good meats.

The restaurants get the best of the fresh fish. There is a tiny fish market in Koloa, and the Dolphin has a fish market at the shopping center. What they carry varies from day to day.

Other local treats: everyone knows about Kauai Kookie, but look at the ingredient panel and you'll choose something else. We like the cookies make by so Sugar Snax - made with real butter, no artificial anything. If you want to go straight to the source, they re located in Waimea, across the street from the Shrimp Station (best coconut shrimp I've had anywhere). You can find them at Sueoka's and at Longs Drugs in Lihue.

The Lapperts at the Kukui'ui shopping center has the best variety of flavors of any of the Lapperts. (I high;y recommend the Chocolate Ganache to chocolate-lovers.) There is also a new gelato place in the Poipu shopping center.

Wine: There is the Wine Shop in Koloa. We always bring some wine with us, but enjoy buying from Dan. If you buy a bottle of wine from Dan, you get free corkage on the bottle at Plantation Gardens and at Red Salt. For less expensive wines, there is Costco.

If I can be helpful by answering questions about Kauai, I am glad to do so.
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Mar 9th, 2015, 05:14 PM
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World Famous Tip Top Motel Cafe and Bakery. Banana Macadamia pancakes.

I've even stayed there.
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Mar 9th, 2015, 05:19 PM
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mlgb, thank you! Cheryl and I were talking about a place where we had banana macadamia pancakes in Lihue and couldn't remember the name - that is it!. It's a bit far for a breakfast from Poipu, but we will try to get there before we have to leave on Friday. LOL - I didn't know they actually had rooms!
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Mar 9th, 2015, 05:21 PM
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Cinder block, Kathie. If you have ever stayed in a dorm room or prison block it will seem familiar, LOL.
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Mar 9th, 2015, 06:26 PM
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Sounds romantic, mlgb!

Restaurants: Every year there are more restaurants in the Poipu area. Everyone has their own ideas about what they want, so here is a list of places we have eaten at many times and some brief comments.

Expensive, celebration-type places:

Beach House - fabulous views! We have always had good food here, but a friend has had a couple of bad experiences.

Merriman's - we have had mostly very good food here, but with a couple of dishes that were misses. They have a happy hour than it good.

Roy's - the "old" Roys in the Poipu Shopping Village is now closed and the new Roy's called the Eating House and ;located in Kuikui'ui Shopping Center is to open soon. We are looking forward to eating there next year.

Mid-range places

Plantation Gardens - one of our favorites. They always have excellent fish specials. They also have some things that many people find odd, only because they haven't tried them. There is a pork tenderloin on sugar cane skewers that is excellent, and they do a pot roast that is many people's favorite dish. Excellent pupus (appetizers) and salads as well.

Breneke's has been there forever - I used to eat there back in the days before Iniki wiped out so much in the area. I love this place - unpretentious - but with warm, friendly, service and perfectly cooked fish.

More casual places

Merman's Downstairs - pretty good, some things better than others, of course. Heavy on the burgers and pizza and fries

The Shrimp Station in Waimea - great coconut shrimp!

Tortilla Republic - the upstairs Grill is better than the downstairs bar in every way - food, drinks, service and is more mid-range. The downstairs bar is cheaper, though the margaritas were watered down last night. Makes me hesitant to return.

This is by no means an exhaustive listing, but may give you some ideas.

Aloha!
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Mar 9th, 2015, 06:40 PM
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Other food notes: There is a good deli (Boar's Head meats) in Koloa. Both the tiny fish market and Sueoka's have traditional Hawaiian plate lunches. There is a Bubba's burgers in the Kuikui'u Shopping center - uses grass-fed Kauai beef, and a Puka Dog in the Poipu Shopping village as well as Poipu Tropical Burgers.
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Mar 9th, 2015, 09:44 PM
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Sorry for the garbled typing, the name os the shopping center with all the restaurants is Kukui'ula.
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Mar 11th, 2015, 03:50 PM
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The new Roys just opened for dinner only, it will soon be offering lunch as well. We won't have time to eat there this year, but looking forward to next year. We chatted with someone in the restaurant and looked at the menu. It is much more casual than the old Roys. They kept only 5 dishes from the old menu - all of the other dishes are new. It's an interesting menu.
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Mar 11th, 2015, 07:21 PM
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Bookmarking. Thank you!
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May 14th, 2015, 02:27 PM
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thank you for this great info! especially on the healthier eats items.
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