Eat Lunch Hawai‘i-StyleBig Island
The PLATE LUNCH is a quintessential part of Hawaiian cuisine. Two parts rice, one part macaroni salad and one part meat, these large meals cover the basics and sometimes even all three daily meals. Even better, their prices rival those of any typical fast-food joint found on Hawai‘i. Just pick up a plate lunch, plop down on a beach, and enjoy what life has dished up.
Some typical and authentic Hawaiian plate lunches are: LOCO MOCO, a hamburger steak served over rice and topped with an egg and gravy; KALUA PORK, traditionally prepared pork that has been slow-cooked in an imu and served with cabbage; and CHICKEN KATSU, which is a Japanese-style chicken cutlet. Korean plate lunches feature items such as KALBI and BI BIM BAP.
Plate lunches can be found at lunch wagons, drive-ins and small markets around the island—you’ll be surprised at the places you’ll stumble upon them.
If a juicy, 100-percent Big Island grass-fed beef burger sounds delicious, then ANNIE’S FRESH ISLAND BURGERS is your spot! This casual joint prides itself on using as much local, organic produce as possible. Just about everything is “Annie’s-made” in house. Just one bite of Annie’s burgers, and you’ll understand why Annie’s won BUSINESS INSIDER’S “BEST BURGER IN HAWAII” in 2014. A hearty selection of fish, chicken and vegetarian-friendly fare is also available. Visit anniesislandfreshburgers.com.
Not really looking for a take-and-go situation? Don’t fret. Many eateries around the island offer menus filled with comfort food that pleases the palate of locals and visitors alike in a causal-and-comfortable atmosphere.