Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Rainbow Drive-In

A plate lunch is the quintessential Hawaiian meal. Its a plate with a little bit of this, and a little bit of that. And if you're in Oahu, specifically in Waikiki, Rainbow Drive-In is the place to get your plate lunch fix. My brother raves about this place, and it was also featured on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives on the Food Network. So during our quick trip to Oahu, we had to make the drive and brave the traffic in Honolulu to try Rainbow Drive-In.

In business for 50 years, their philosophy has always been hearty portions of great food, at a reasonable price for the working class. This still stands true and I can certainly attest to that when we ordered our food at the walk-up counter in Kapahulu. We ordered our food and it came out in quick minutes. I think it took longer trying to figure what to order, than when we actually got our food after we ordered. But hey, we weren't complaining.

I love beef BBQ served Hawaiian style, so I ordered the BBQ Steak, served with 2 scoops of rice and a side of macaroni salad. The beef was so tender and macaroni salad creamy. This was definitely ono kine grinds.

Known for their Loco Moco, hubby decided to order this specialty. A Loco Moco is a hamburger steak on top of 2 scoops of rice, all dredged in their house gravy and topped with eggs over-easy. I've had other versions of Loco Moco before, where the gravy used is the typical brown gravy. Rainbow's version was almost like a chili flavor with a slight sweetness. I guess its an acquired taste, because hubby loved it and I wasn't huge fan of it. I stuck to my BBQ steak.

Our daughter is not a big meat eater yet, so we had to pick something up for her. On the day we we visited Rainbow's, their special for the day was Spaghetti with wiener. Sounds like Filipino spaghetti to me, where the spaghetti sauce is slightly sweet and always has slices of hot dogs. This shows how big of an influence Filipino cuisine was to Hawaiian cuisine. Well, unfortunately, they ran out of the spaghetti, and so we ordered the next best thing. Saimin, which is basically Ramen.

The authentic Japanese Ramen, I've had the pleasure of eating and enjoying. Other Saimin dishes, I've also had, which were pretty good. Rainbow's, however, was pretty disappointing. It tasted more like it came from a packet. You know the one. The instant Ramen. Yeah, I guess they put more effort into their plate lunches. Luckily, our daughter can't tell the difference between instant ramen and a good ramen yet. And she needed to eat. No complaints from her.

I look forward to returning to Rainbow Drive-in someday, if only for their BBQ plate.

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