“On the beach at Waikiki, that’s where you’ll find me/Here on the southside, Beach Boys paradise/Duke’s on Sunday…” – Jimmy Buffett”
Every year, the company I work for has a global celebration for the best of the best in the company. This year it was in Hawaii. Since the trip was only two nights, I didn’t have any time to really explore or get out of Waikiki. But, whirlwind trip or not, there is always time for food. I had some free time on Sunday before I left so I arranged to meet some friends that live on the island for lunch.
I chose Duke’s for two reasons. One, I’m a parrothead at heart and I wanted to say that I had been to Duke’s on Sunday. Thanks Jimmy. Two, Duke’s is where my aunt and uncle took me for dinner when I was five years old while my parents went on a dinner cruise for their anniversary. If you ask me what I remember from that trip to Hawaii, one of the three things I’ll say is that Karen and Matt cut my burger into quarters. I will admit, though, that I did not remember that said quartered burger was at Duke’s until Karen and my mom reminded me a few weeks prior to my trip this year.
Duke’s is named after Duke Kahanamoku. Don’t know who he is? Google him – he’s a pretty big deal in Hawaii. It’s a pretty nifty set up at the restaurant. There’s the “inside” that looks like the inside of a tiki hut, then there are seats outside on the beach. We sat “inside.” I use the term inside lightly, as it was open air with a great view of the beach and the palm trees, and we really were sitting on something more like a patio.
When I arrived, I thought I was going to do the lunch buffet to get an athentic taste of Hawaii, but I wound up with the cajun fish tacos. Since I’m originally from California, I’m a sucker for good fish tacos and I figured that seafood in Hawaii had to be good. I was not disappointed.
The tacos were super tasty, the fish did not have a super fishy-taste, and two tacos with chips and pico de gallo was just enough food to fill me up without leaving me feeling miserably stuffed.
It may be a “touristy” thing to do, but I would go back to Duke’s in heartbeat. So, if you are ever in Hawaii at the same time I am, that’s where you’ll find me.