Hearty Holiday Eats

A La Carte

November 25, 2018

Story By: Don Robbins |

Embutido ($13.50 loaf, $49.50 small catering tray with four loaves, $89.75 for a large tray with seven loaves)

Some of the foods and beverages sung about in traditional holiday songs, such as “figgy pudding,” “wassail” or “sugar plums,” can often leave many of us scratching our heads as to their exact nature and origins.

However, there is one surefire way to obtain good tidings and joy right now, and that’s with the scrumptious Filipino food from Max’s of Manila restaurant.

This famed eatery is known far and wide for its lip-smacking Max’s Fried Chicken, Lumpiang Shanghai (Filipino egg roll) and Kare Kare (peanut-based oxtail stew).

Founded in the Philippines in 1945 by Maximo Gimenez, the establishment proudly serves traditional Filipino food. Through the years, the restaurant has expanded across the globe, into locations such as Oahu.

The first Max’s of Manila branch in Hawaii is the Waipahu Branch, which opened in March 2006 in the Waipahu Shopping Plaza on Farrington Highway.

Pata Tim ($16.50 a la carte, $48.50 small catering tray with three hocks, $97.50 large tray with six hocks).

Hawaii’s second Max’s site is the Dillingham Branch, conveniently located in town at Costco Iwilei Complex. It opened its doors in March 2010 to the further delight of hungry customers.

Maly San Luis, general manager of Max’s of Manila in Hawaii, shares that online and delivery orders are available. Additionally, private party rooms are available.

She also notes Max’s of Manila has a special holiday gift card promotion going on — buy a $50 gift card and receive a $10 bonus card.


‘Tis the season for wonderful Filipino dishes that you can only get at Max’s of Manila during this special time of year.

For example, Pata Tim and Embutido are both dishes only available during the holidays at Max’s of Manila, from now to Jan. 5.

Pata Tim ($16.50 a la carte) is a dish of beer braised pork hocks. This item is also available in catering trays — small $48.50 (three hocks) and large $97.50 (six hocks). This dish is influenced by Chinese cuisine with a Filipino twist, explains general manager Maly San Luis. A whole pork hock is braised in a beer/soy sauce-based broth and is flavored with spices, including star anise. It is cooked for a lengthy time until the hock becomes perfectly tender and the sauce is reduced to a flavorful thickness, San Luis shares.

The other holiday-season-only dish, Embutido ($13.50 for a loaf) is “influenced by the Spaniards who colonized the Philippines for almost 400 years,” San Luis explains. This is a Filipino-style meatloaf, which is very popular during the holidays. Its tasty recipe includes sausage, ground pork, hard-boiled eggs, cheese, carrots, pickles and raisins. The meatloaf is served with Filipino Banana Sauce. This dish is also available in catering trays at $49.50 for a small tray (four loaves) or $89.75 for a large tray (seven loaves).

Waipahu, HI 96797

Honolulu, HI 96817

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