The experience

DSC_0192I’m chilling at the hospital right now (working, not as a patient!), which for the Phipps family means accomodating Mommy’s schedule and eating early and near the hospital.  We gave Mina a few choices and she finally chose Hawaiian BBQ.  I got wind of this place via email a few months ago and have been itching to try it but Mina surprisingly had not chose it until tonight.  We trekked across town to eat at L&L Hawaiian BBQ in West Plano.  I thought we were driving to Hawaii it took so long to get there from our side of town!

We arrived and it’s counter service.  Mina found a table for us while Ogre, Benji and I hit the counter.  We immediately noticed the large selection of Hawaiian Sun drinks.  Yummy!!  I love this stuff!  I picked out some Pass-O-Guava for the kids and me.  We looked up at the menu and found entrees for ourselves and then noticed the kids selections on the counter.  We decided the kids could share a kids dish.



I took my drinks and my sweet Benji to the table while Ogre paid up and then got a drink for himself (boring iced tea).  We sat down and the kids must have been hungry because they kept pointing at the pictures of food on the window.  In fact, Benji was crying about it. 



Mina managed to entertain herself with that little metal thing that holds your number.  She coerced me into taking a picture of her with a “beard.”



They brought out our food when it was ready. Here was the strangest part about dinner.  They serve your meal in to go containers, even though you’re eating in.  Hmmm, sort of weird, no?

Anyway, that didn’t stop us from enjoying our meal.  Mina said that the Pass-o-Guava juice reminded her of flying between the islands (they serve this on the inter-island flights).  Mina loves Hawaii and always talks about wanting to go back.  She remembers everything about Hawaii.  She said that this was sort of like eating in Hawaii except the food was different.  It is true that she did not eat any Hawaiian BBQ while in Hawaii.



The kids also enjoyed smelling the teriyaki sauce, yeah, our kids are as weird as the to go containers.


I think a big part of our enjoyment at dinner tonight was reminiscing about being in Hawaii and looking forward to going back soon!  But for Benji, the biggest enjoyment came with the malasadas, well, once he got them.  When Ogre went to order the malasadas, Benji immediately began whining about “do-nuhs” (doughnuts).  This deteriorated into crying and us telling him to be patient because they are making them right now. 



Finally, they came out.  I was suspicious that they wouldn’t be as good as Leonard’s Malasadas on Oahu.  They were pretty gosh darn tasty and a very, very close second to Leonard’s and certainly a lot closer geographically!  We loved them.  I’m glad Ogre didn’t get the large order, we would have had no problem eating them when we shouldn’t!



The food

Just like it says: Hawaiian BBQ.  They serve pork, beef, chicken Hawaiian BBQ style, a light sweet soy marinade.  They also have lau lau pork (steamed in banana leaf), kalua pork (the shredded pork traditionally cooked underground at luaus, I don’t know how they prepare it for the restaurant).  They also have mahi mahi and shrimp (breaded and deep fried) and some other traditonal Hawaiin dishes (musubi, saimin, portugese sausage).

Short Ribs Spam MusubiI ordered the Spam Musubi and BBQ Short Ribs plate.  Both were very tasty.  Yup, I like spam.  I actually still eat with regularity.  I really like spam musubi, it’s not difficult to make, but when no one else really eats it with you, it’s not fun to make at home, so this was a fun surprise.  It tastes great with the terriyaki sauce!  I love the combo of the seaweed, rice and spam.  Try it, you’ll like it, I promise!!  The BBQ Short Ribs plate comes with rice and the traditional macaroni salad.  I liked this also.  The BBQ Short Ribs are sweet (not as sweet as you’d come across at a Korean restaurant) and tender.  I liked the macaroni salad, but I prefer mine to also have pineapple.  They do not include pineapples in their macaroni salad recipe.  Overall, pretty good Hawaiian food.

Barbeque MixOgre ordered the Barbecue Mix that came with chicken, beef and short ribs.  Ogre also likes the spam musabi though not as much as me.  Maybe its because its not very healthy.  Still tastes good.  The chicken was excellent.  Very tender, juicy and flavorful.  Ogre thought both the beef and the short ribs tasted very similar to Korean bulgogi and kalbi.  There’s no lack of mayonaisse on the macaroni salad. Not bad, but don’t go for that on a diet.

Barbeque ChickenThe kids got the BBQ Chicken and Macaroni and Cheese Plate.  They loved it.  The chicken is tender, juicy, and has a nice BBQ flavor.  The macaroni and cheese was very cheesy and they ate all of it! 


MalasadasThe malasadas are super tasty, so leave room.  Malasadas are deep fried dough that is rolled in sugar.  I think it is more dense  (and more tasty) than a doughnut, if that makes sense.  Leave room to try this!

The kids menu offered BBQ Chicken, Breaded Chicken, and a couple other items I can’t recall for $2.95.  The kids got a nice sized portion for that price!


The service

Counter service.  But really, it’s a Hawaiian restaurant, have you ever met a Hawaiian that wasn’t friendly?


The kids

I’d call it average kid friendliness.  They have a good little kids menu and it’s definitely a laid back restaurant where you’re going to feel comfortable eating with the kids.  They don’t have crayons/kids activities, but it’s counter service and the food comes out quickly, so I wouldn’t anticipate the need for that.  The guy behind the counter gave Mina little jello treats.

If you’re from Hawaii or you’ve been to Hawaii and enjoyed the tradtional Hawaiian food (and I’m not just talkin’ luau food!), then come here for some Hawaiian comfort food!  It’s tried and true and I swear, you’ll get that Aloha feeling when you’re there!  Just don’t say I didn’t warn you about the to-go containers!!

The total:

8404 Preston Road, #200
Plano TX 75024

Phone: (972) 712-3888

Rants, Raves, and Ramblings

So, I have to tell you about our first Malasada experience.  My friend, Mark Shen, told us that his perfect day in Hawaii starts at Leonard’s.  Well, obviously, Team Phipps wanted to have a perfect day in Hawaii also.  So on the day that we were going to drive to North Shore to show the kids were Mommy and Papa got married, we stopped into Leonard’s Malasadas and bought a variety of malasadas.  We go to the car, opened up our box and tried one and, literally, we were like, “WHAT ARE THESE NUGGETS OF LUSCIOUSNESS?”  We started to drive off and realized that we couldn’t go on.  We had to drive back, order more of the plain sugared malasadas and then we could continue on our journey. We’d maybe driven 2 blocks before turning around to order more.  And we even bought Benji a little stuffed Malasada to take home with us.

Oh, and this is Mina dancing and saying, “Woo-hoo!)  because we won’t have to eat out everyday after August…DSC_0207

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