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Jason Perlow

Loco Moco

36 posts in this topic

As a former Hilo resident and a lifelong Hilo fan, I never really saw "Cafe 100" as the definitive spot for a loco moco... I just knew that was what they marketed themselves as. Several hole-in-the-wall eateries served what I considered to be superior versions of the dish. My sentimental favorite was the loco at Ken's House of Pancakes. Big. Heavy. Frighteningly delicious.

The UH Hilo cafeteria didn't do a bad rendition either.

Skchai, the UH Manoa moco you posted looks tasty, but just not quite right to me. The rice belongs underneath, darn it! And I agree, that gravy is way too thin. Loco mocos have to be artery cloggers, and to do the right amount of damage, the gravy's gotta be thick... possibly lumpy!


user posted image HawaiiThreads.com - Let's talk story!

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Mahalos for joining us here at eGullet, Ryan.

Thanks for sharing your Hilo-related wisdom. Have to admit never having been to Cafe 100 myself, so your take on things is very interesting. While, I lived on the Big Island myself for a several months working for West Hawaii Today, I rarely made it over to the rainy side! What exactly was the main difference between Cafe 100 and Ken's? Was it mostly the size of the loco?

Yes, I have to admit that the U.H. version is very heterodox. I think the reason they don't put the meat on to is probably because everything else at Paradise Palms is served on plates so they have to serve it on a plate. As for the gravy - that is pretty thin, as you mention. I don't mind that so much but perhaps it does go against the spirit of the Loco Moco.

Speaking of big loco mocos, I spocked some huge ones being prepared at Okata Bento in Kaimuki. Pan-lid sized; in fact they were using pan lids to flatten them down. Even managed a couple pictures, though unfortunately the second was out of focus.

i3416.jpg

Uncovered:

i3417.jpg

How did they taste? I don't know; I ate the bento!


Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

Former Hawaii Forum Host

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I don't know if UH manoa still does it but they used to cook their hamburger patties out back at a separate building and then bring it over and heat em up which led to a tough patty. This is at paradise palms, btw.

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Thanks for the welcome! As for the difference between the "original" Cafe 100 loco moco and what I consider to be a genuine loco moco (like the one served at Ken's), it came down to simple size. To me a moco comes in a large saimin bowl, and - if appropriately large and dense - almost takes two hands to carry.

What Cafe 100 was serving up was like a small Dairy Queen sundae by comparison - a small styrofoam cup with a sad lump inside. While I'm sure you can probably pay extra to get a "large," frankly I don't think there should be any such thing as a small loco moco!


user posted image HawaiiThreads.com - Let's talk story!

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Tonight I had the loco moco platelunch at "Da Kitchen", a four-month-old establishment in Mountain View, California. The very large portion of loco was sufficient unto itself, the two scoops rice and one scoop salad were culinary overload. The hamburger had a decided bacon flavor and the thick gravy was loaded with onions. The salad was just macaroni and some kind of tasteless white dressing holding it together. Wouldn't have hurt to have some tuna or green pepper in it. All in all worth $8.95. Still have that full feeling 5 hours later.

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Lopaka, are there a lot of Hawai`i local-style restaurants in Mountain View and the rest of the bay area? I lived there around 10 years ago and it was impossible to find anything. . .

PPC, great thread on Fodor's site. Are all the threads that great? I especially like the part where the various posters were comparing the patty / price and scoop rice / price ratios. Never had the Sidestreet Inn Loco-Moco, but the posts make we want to try.

BTW, in order to access the site, you need to register. . .


Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

Former Hawaii Forum Host

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Lopaka,  are there a lot of Hawai`i local-style restaurants in Mountain View and the rest of the bay area?  I lived there around 10 years ago and it was impossible to find anything. . .

Ah, but things are different now. Google on over to "San Francisco Bay Area Hawaiian Food" and you will see what we have.

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oops! Sorry, SK, I forgot about the Fodors registration procedure!

Most of the threads on Fodors have to do with travel, destination accomodations, etc. Every so often an inquiry will be made about breakfast spots, honeymoon dinners, fish houses, and the like.

btw, I will be emailing the El Charro pictures to you. If we wait for me to get educated in picture-posting, we may be old and gray!

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4297990419_011a8a1d8f_b.jpg

Hamburger steak, fried spam, fried rice, fried egg mushroom gravy and macaroni salad.

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