The main road on the East side of Waikiki is filled with a variety of unique eateries and mom & pop shops that give you a glimpse into Oahu’s past.
Kapahulu Avenue runs mauka (mountain) from Kapiolani Park all the way to the freeway; the resulting neighborhood, Kapahulu, is a good place for those who prefer off-the-beaten-path locales. Browse vintage goods at Bailey’s Vintage Aloha Shirts and unique finds from around the world at Peggy’s Picks, then head to Aburiya Ibushi, Uncle Bo’s Pupu Bar & Grill or Tonkatsu Tamafuji for its signature panko-crusted, deep-fried pork loin.
We have created an online directory of our favorite places to shop and eat.
- Alejandro’s Tacos D:5
Its name suggests the specialty at this Mexican-themed eatery: tacos. Five-inch corn tortillas are stuffed with a choice of carnitas, beef or carne asada. For added value, order one of the taco combo plates or Mexi Bowls.
949 Kapahulu Ave
- Aburiya Ibushi D:10
The wafting aroma of binchotan (a specialty type of barbecue charcoal) at this izakaya-style pub lures guests but it’s the extensive menu of grilled meats, vegetables and side dishes that keeps them here. Must-tries: the pork belly teishoku, beef flank steak and Japanese-style oxtail ramen.
740 Kapahulu Ave
- Bailey’s Antiques & Aloha Shirts E:14
A Kapahulu landmark since 1980, this bric-a-brac shop boasts more than 15,000 aloha shirts (categorized by eras starting in the ’30s) and an eclectic selection of Americana and Hawaiiana antiques and collectibles. A definite must visit while on the island.
517 Kapahulu Ave
- Chronic Tacos Mexican Grill c:7
With multiple locations across the U.S., Canada and Japan, this popular franchise allows patrons to build their own tacos, burritos and quesadillas. Hearty proteins include carne asada, pollo asado, carnitas, al pastor, mahi mahi or shrimp. Vegetarians rejoice: Beyond Beef is also an option.
888 Kapahulu Ave
- Fresh Catch D:3
A self-proclaimed “Island Style Seafood & Meat Deli,” the Fresh Catch concept is the dream of brothers Reno and Dominic Henriques. Local poke favorites include ahi limu, spicy and tako. For more substance try the ahi belly drizzled with a creamy garlic-butter sauce or the ahi katsu served with a homemade katsu sauce.
1113 Kapahulu Ave
- Goodguys Music & Sound F:11
Wide selection of musical instruments new and used. guitars, ukuleles, sound systems, accessories and more!
619 Kapahulu Ave
- Guava Smoked E:13
It seemed only inevitable before Guava Smoked would open a brick-and-mortar restaurant after its loyal following among local Farmers’ Markets attendees. This second location in Kapahulu offers the same smoked meats, including mild or spicy pork, pork burgers, kalbi ribs, salmon belly, butterfish collar, turkey tail, chicken legs and skinless chicken thighs. The secret to its popularity: the use of invasive strawberry guava wood that infuses a sweet, smoky essence to all its meats. Inside Scoop: A daily Happy Hour menu lists savory eats at bargain prices.
567 Kapahulu Ave
- Haili’s Hawaiian Food D:9
“Hawai‘i’s favorite Hawaiian food can be found at Haili’s,” according to food critics and kama‘aina alike. This third-generation family eatery continues to attract old and new customers with its authentic poi, poke, chicken long rice, lomi salmon and a range of traditional Hawaiian food and local favorites. Da Big Kahuna is the ultimate Hawaiian plate lunch, consisting of laulau, chicken long rice, lomi salmon, kalua pig, poke, haupia, pineapple, sweet potato and poi.
760 Palani Ave at the intersection of Kapahulu Ave
- Kaimuki Dry Goods (not on map)
Modern and traditional material prints plus sewing accessories
1144 10th Ave, #100
- Kona Abalone E:17
Gourmands now have the opportunity to savor the Ezo (from Northern Japanese) abalone, which are raised along the Kona Coast of Hawaiʻi island in a 10-acre aquafarm. Served live, steamed or grilled, these delicate fruits de mer offer a briny, rich flavor and a true treat for any seafood aficionado. Tip: Take a can — or two — home for an epicurean treat for friends and family.
415 Kapahulu Ave
- Kono’s Northshore D:5
Winner of multiple local awards, the Surfing Pig — as it’s more affectionately known — is famous for its kalua pork, which is slowly roasted for 12 hours then slathered with a piquant guava barbecue sauce. Available as a plate lunch or bowl, or tucked in tacos, sliders, tortillas and quesadillas.
945 Kapahulu Ave
- Kozo Sushi E:11
A go-to for a quick fix of various handrolls and nigiri, Kozo Sushi has multiple locations throughout the island. Specialties include the Dragon Maki, California Roll and spicy ahi. Platters and bowls are also available.
625 Kapahulu Ave
- Leonard’s Bakery D:5
Its iconic sign beckons visitors from far and wide who are in search for the holy grail of malasadas. The fried pastry — slightly crispier and chewier than a donut — is a popular Hawaiian staple. Leonard’s is undoubtedly a mandatory stop for foodies and anyone who appreciates pastries.
933 Kapahulu Ave
- Ono Seafood E:10
Local residents frequent this no-frills eatery for its assortment of ahi poke. Relax and enjoy the casual atmosphere. The menu includes made-to-order poke by the pound and poke bowls. Quality is foremost here, where seafood is always fresh and never frozen.
747 Kapahulu Ave
- Onoya Ramen F:12
Ramen shops have proliferated across the islands in the past decade. The once-humble bowl of noodles has now been elevated to a gourmet level at Onoya. Signature ramen include the Tonkatsu Tan Tan Men, Tonkatsu Spicy and the Tonkatsu Black.
611 Kapahulu Ave
- Rainbow Drive-In F:15
The end of the rainbow doesn’t lead to a pot o’ gold here but instead you’ll find some local culinary treasures that will surely enrich your appetite. Old-school local favorites include the mix plate, offering a trio of barbecue beef, boneless chicken and mahi mahi; marinated barbecue; and, of course, the ubiquitous loco moco.
3308 Kanaina Ave
- Rigo SPANISH ITALIAN D:7
The best of two old worlds come together in this single location. Patrons can enjoy prix-fixe tapas and wines, Spanish Josper (an oven that’s built and imported from Spain) grilled main dishes, wood-fried pizzas and homemade pastas incorporating local produce.
885 Kapahulu Ave
- S7 Icy Bubble C:7
- Side Street Inn E:12
Once known as a local haunt among O‘ahu’s top chefs, Side Street Inn exudes a neighborhood bar vibe with an unpretentious menu. Its fame was built on its legendary pan-fried pork chops — yes, pork chops, which offer a crisp exterior in contrast with a moist and tender interior.
614 Kapahulu Ave
- Sushi Ginza Onodera E:8
The best of the Ginza can be found at this Kapahulu outpost and reservations are highly suggested. Serving only an omakase menu (chef’s selections), Japan-trained chefs use the traditional technique
known as Edomae, which is named after Edo, today known as Tokyo. This experience comes at a cost: a choice of two set menus, priced at $100 and $150, respectively, for lunch, and $300 for dinner.
808 Kapahulu Ave
- Tokkuri Tei F:16
Perhaps one of the first izakaya-style restaurants in Hawai‘i, Tokkuri Tei is ranked among the “Top 21 Sushi Spots in the USA.” Belly up to the sushi bar and delight in the otoro (fatty ahi) or maguro (tuna) sashimi, spicy scallop roll, kushi yaki (skewered and grilled meats) and sushi moriawase (combination sets).
449 Kapahulu Ave
- Tonkatsu Tamafuji F:16
This lively second-floor eatery draws large crowds with its house-special breaded pork chop entrees, including the signature Jyukusei (aged) pork loin katsu. According to its website, “Tamafuji cold-ages
its meat for 18 days to ensure the very best possible condition for tonkatsu. Guests will unamimously agree.
449 Kapahulu Ave
- Uncle Bo’s Pupu Bar & Grill F:13
Locals and visitors alike have made this casual, one-of-a-kind modern restaurant a must-try place to dine, wine, cocktail and kick back. Menu highlights include Uncle Bo’s kalua pig fried rice, garlic rib-eye steak, various types of pasta and fresh fish of the day.
559 Kapahulu Ave
- Veggi Dogs D:8
- Zippy’s F:12
Zippy’s to locals is what Applebee’s is to mainland residents: a casual, family-style restaurant with multiple locations. Often considered the “gateway to local Hawaiian cuisine,” Zippy’s extensive menu includes daily plates, burgers and sandwiches, and its famous Zip Pac, consisting of a piece of fried chicken, bread hoki fish, a slice of teriyaki beef and SPAM. Grab one for the beach.
601 Kapahulu Ave
Bubble Tea, Boba & Smoothie Drinks
888 Kapahulu Ave
Located on the corner of Kapahulu Ave. and Paliuli St., this hot dog stand has its share of fans, some of whom say “they crave these awesome hot dogs.” Find out for yourself if these dogs are what the Impossible Burger have been to the round ground patties — tasty vegan alternatives.
819 Kapahulu Ave