Bring On the Festivities at Wailana

Ali Carte Columns

September 2, 2012

Story By: Ali Resich |

Every year, Aloha Week presents an opportunity to appreciate all of the beauty and richness of our unique Island traditions. As everyone knows, there are so many reasons to feel lucky we live Hawaii, and one of those is the undoubtably remarkable world of eats that we have at our fingertips. In the spirit of recognizing a plenitude of culture, why not pay homage to the places that have been an integral part of their community? Places like Wailana Coffee House.

The legendary spot has served up local favorites as well as American classics in Waikiki since 1969. According to general manager Kenton Tom, its foundation lies even deeper than that, as the restaurant is located where the original Kapiolani Drive Inn once stood — another mainstay opened by his father, Francis Tom, in the 1950s.

To join in the fun of Aloha Week, Wailana will be dishing out complete dinner specials Friday, Sept. 21 and Saturday, Sept. 22. from 11 a.m. to midnight. Dive into a slew of festive feasts, which includes perhaps the most comforting of foods for many locals, a full-on Hawaiian Luau Dinner ($16.25). Kalua Pig, Laulau, Chicken with Long Rice, Lomi Salmon, a choice of Poi or Rice (both, please!) and Haupia will fill your tummy — and heart.

In true Wailana fashion, the restaurant also will offer a range of tastes to try, such as Teriyaki Striploin Steak ($15.95) or the ginger, shoyu and smoked hickory flavors of Hibachi Chicken & Shrimp Kabobs ($14.50). All of the dinners include a baked or mashed potato, french fries or rice, corn on the cob, a salad bar, beverage and haupia for dessert.

And Wailana wouldn’t be the beloved 24-hour eatery it is if it wasn’t for its amazing breakfast menu. The Portuguese Sweet Bread Combo ($9.50) is a delightful spe- cial full of fanciful wedges of local-style sweet bread served with a pocket of orange marmalade, bacon, two large eggs (any style) and coffee or tea on the side.

Believe it or not, there are more glorious grinds to speak of, as the establishment will roll out another day of specials Sept. 9 in celebration of Grandparents Day. Show the dearest elders in your life how much you appreciate their love and support by treating them to something as savory as a Prime Rib Roast ($17.50) and Poached Salmon Florentine ($13.95). Or indulge in Roast Tom Turkey with Smoked Ham ($13.50), served with macadamia nut stuffing, old-fashion giblet gravy and a grilled pineapple ring filled with cranberry sauce. Grandmas and grandpas also will love Eggs Benedict Royal ($10.50) made with smoked ham, turkey breast and all the works.

Glasses of house wine, Chablis, Rose or Burgundy also will be flowing for $3.75 a pop, and during Aloha week, sample the most tropical of cocktails, a Mai Tai for the same price.

It’s time for kau kau at Wailana!

Wailana Coffee House

1860 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu
Open daily 24 hours except 10 p.m. Tuesday to 6 a.m. Wednesday
Note: Validated parking available

Honolulu, HI 96815

Hawaii's Best
Hawaii's Best