A unique isle tradition, huli huli chicken was a staple while growing up, mainly as a fundraiser for organizations. For Mike Fuse, owner of Mike’s Huli Chicken located at Kahuku Sugar Mill, huli huli chicken has always had a special place.
“Growing up in Hale‘iwa,” says Fuse, “I was always in the water surfing or at community events, and we would always eat huli huli chicken because it was so good and everyone loved it. I started Mike’s Huli Chicken almost 10 years ago with the main focus of making sure customers from all over the world leave our restaurant feeling satisfied, and that they’ve tasted some of the best huli chicken Hawaiʻi has to offer.”
The food truck was featured on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive Ins and Dives” and that’s when business really skyrocketed. But it takes more than a TV show to bring in the customers and keep them returning time and again.
“Our variation of huli chicken is unique because we use different spices with Hawaiian rock salt and cook it over kiawe wood for everyone to see,” says Fuse. In fact, Fuse created his own special dipping sauce that can be used on everything, says his wife, Debbie. It’s just that good. Debbie’s favorite menu item is the Chicken/Kalua Pig Combo; Mike’s is the Steak & Garlic Shrimp. To savor the true essence of Mike’s Huli Chicken, Debbie suggests the Chicken & Garlic Shrimp.
“People always ask me what makes my food truck unique,” says Mike, “and I always say it’s the feeling of aloha that we create for our customers. I’m constantly working on new projects to improve our customers’ experience.”