Eatery continues to keep patrons smilingA La Carte
February 25, 2018
Story By: Yu Shing Ting | Photos by: YU SHING TING
For the past 17 years, Happy Days Chinese Seafood Restaurant in Kaimuki has been bringing joy to generations of customers with its tasty Hong Kong-style cuisine.
Local favorites Minute Chicken Cake Noodle, Crispy Gau Gee and Honey Walnut Shrimp are among the restaurant’s most popular dishes. However, the neighborhood eatery also is known for its traditional Chinese food, such as Pork with Sweet Sour Cabbage ($13.95, you can choose to substitute pork with beef or chicken) and Pan Fried E-Mein ($11.75).
“We make our own sweet sour cabbage,” notes owner Lisa Lum. “It’s stir-fried with carrots, onion, green bell pepper and pork.
“The e-mein is also popular because there’s not too much oil, and it’s light,” she adds. “It has mushrooms, bean sprouts, Chinese peas, and your choice of chicken or pork.”
E-mein, which is an egg noodle that is in between the thickness of udon and chow mein, is especially popular with Chinese customers, as they believe noodles represent long life.
Garlic String Bean with Pork ($12.95) is another classic Chinese dish. The string beans are stir-fried with a perfect blend of chili pepper, garlic and ginger; and it goes well with a bowl of rice.
Happy Days also is known for its dim sum, served from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily. The regular menu, which features an extensive list of about 180 items, is available starting at 10 a.m. daily.
Many of the dishes are original recipes, and longtime customers appreciate the consistency in taste as the chef, aka Mr. Wu, has been with the restaurant since the beginning.
Located at the corner of Waialae and 11th avenues, Happy Days also offers two party rooms that can seat up to 40 people total.
“I think our restaurant has been successful because the food is good,” says Lum. “We have plenty of regular customers — they always come back. Sometimes they come for lunch, and then they come back for dinner.
“They’re like family. They’re comfortable, they’re happy — and that makes us happy,” she adds.