Keeping an island dining tradition aliveA La Carte Columns
February 5, 2017
Story By: Ellise Kakazu | Photos by: LAWRENCE TABUDLO
Locals truly are blessed to live in Hawaii, as good food can be found everywhere in the 50th State. And while there are countless eateries on the island, Laverne’s Hawaiian and Local Style Food is among the best.
Laverne’s has been serving the community since 2000 and recently opened its newest location at New-town Driving Range in Aiea — its grand opening was Jan. 7. With affordable prices, generous portions and local flavors, the eatery hits a hole-in-one.
General manager Travis Paulo says Laverne’s mission is to “put a smile on everyone’s face who comes and eats.”
And so far, it has been doing just that for more than a decade.
“We’re family owned and operated; we’ve been in business for over 16 years,” Paulo says. “My dad (Rene Paulo Jr.) is still the head chef, so the food and quality and consistency are always on par.”
Laverne’s offers a range of food options, but there are a few house specialties one must try.
Mahi with Garlic Butter Caper Sauce ($10.50) is one of them. This dish is quite simple, yet delightful, as the chef pan fries the mahi mahi with some flour and then sautes it with a garlic butter and caper sauce.
Another dish worth trying is Smoked Meat ($9.50). The pork is smoked for at least three hours and is flavored with onions and a homemade, shoyu-based sauce.
Beef Stew ($8.50) also is a winner. It’s a tomato-based stew consisting of top-choice beef, celery, carrots, onions and potatoes.
“The meat’s so soft it melts in your mouth,” Paulo explains. “You gotta get gravy over everything ‘cause it’s that good.”
All plates include two generous scoops of rice and a side of either tossed or macaroni salad. (Lomi Salmon can be substituted for 50 cents.)
Laverne’s Hawaiian and Local Style Food
Newtown Driving Range,
98-330 Kaahele St., Aiea
Daily, 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m.