Living In Hawaii, The Food Tour: Highway Inn Kaka’ako

Guaranteed, I haven’t eaten at every local Hawaiian-food restaurant, but I’ve had my tries at several “Hawaiian” dishes.  This place was so good, I came back here TWICE in my five week stay. I always got the sampler platter each time.  It’s a bit more on the pricey end, but it’s so worth it to get a taste of everything good.  Okay maybe not the poi (I still have yet to find poi that I like and isn’t significantly fermented).  

The sampler plate includes a choice of pork lau lau or chicken lau lau followed with the following “sides”: lomi salmon, chicken long rice, poi, sweet potato (purple), kahlua pork, and squid lulau.  Like I said, I loved it all except for the poi. I really like a good piece of fatback and so I chose to go for the definitely fattier and less healthier option of pork lau lau – it comes wrapped in a big leaf (banana?) and is cooked until the meat is so tender it is falling apart on the fork.  As for my favorite side?  It’s so hard to choose because they’re all unique in their own way, but I’d have to go with the chicken long rice or the squid lulau.  

chicken long rice
Lomi salmon


  • all came out hot, even as takeout
  • good portions to sample everything – if you’re planning on multiple food stops and this is your first, it’s definitely good to share just for a taste and then come back when you know what you like!
  • very very filling: it’s a lot of carbs and protein!
  • not too greasy, well balanced in flavors as well with the assorted sides.


  • not healthy haha. Well, the chicken and long rice is healthy and so is the lomi salmon, but the pork lau lau is definitely not. There’s not too much greens or salads or fresh vegetables either so it’s definitely on the “heavier” side of meals
Kahlua pork

Like I said, I loved this platter so much, I came back and got it a second time with friends.

I will say though, the wait is pretty long.  Even for pickup.  I recommend putting the order in online if you can and then getting a time estimate.  Parking is also heinous in the area – there’s one small lot and it’s almost impossible to find parking there at any time of day.  One time we went at 2pm almost 230p and it was still packed!  You need a ticket to go in and out and heaven forbid if your ticket should jam or stall because guarantee you there will be a line of cars behind you at which you will be STUCK.  Street parking is also hell in the area.

The staff is really nice though as most locals are, even for such a high-paced food establishment.  They definitely hustle and I’m glad they are doing well.  I would definitely come back again but maybe to try other items on their menu.

You can find Highway Inn at two locations, but I am specifically writing about the one near Ala Moana off Waikiki called “Highway Inn Kaka’ako”. Definitely check them out, and don’t be afraid to meander around and wait for parking!

680 Ala Moana Blvd Ste 105 Honolulu, HI 96813 | (808) 954-4955 |

Bon apetit!


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This entry was published on October 18, 2021 at 21:09. It’s filed under The Traveller and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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