Bowl of Udon Noodles
February 13, 2020
| by
Maria Mancuso

Best Oahu Restaurants: Eat like a local on Oahu

Such wonderful restaurants to choose from on Oahu….this Oahu Travel Blog Article, ‘Best Oahu Restaurants: Eat like a local on Oahu’ reveals where the locals go to enjoy amazing food.

Oahu has an incredible collection of fantastic Steakhouses, Sushi restaurants, great Beachfront restaurants and many other ‘fancy’ resort-style restaurants. But Oahu is also home to many great restaurants that are the favorites of locals.

These local favorite eateries tend to have an extremely loyal local following because they serve the best food, at great prices and most have been doing so for years and years.

This latest Oahu Travel Blog article, ‘Best Oahu Restaurants: Eat like a local on Oahu,’ introduces you to some of the best of the best local restaurants. Selections include local favorite Plate lunches, amazing Hawaiian cuisine, Bakeries, Seafood and more.

On to the list!

Helena's Hawaiian Food
Location: 1240 N School St, Honolulu, HI 96817
Website
Distance from Ambassador Waikiki: 4.8 Miles

Ask any local on Oahu ‘Where is a great place for local food…’, and it is very likely that Helena’s will be on the ‘Top 3 List’ of everyone you ask. Helena’s has been serving tasty plates since 1946.  Loyal customers include locals and first time and returning tourists. This local favorite and family-owned restaurant is famous for their casual, no frills, ‘family style’ of serving unforgettable Hawaiian food.  Fan favorites include like their Short Ribs Pipikaula Style, Kalua Pig & Pipikaula Short Ribs, Squid Luau, Fried Butterfish Collar, to name a few.  In 2000, Helena’s was awarded a Regional Classics Award by James Beard.  

Marukame Udon
Location: 2310 Kuhio Ave., Honolulu, HI 96815
Website  
Distance from Ambassador Waikiki: .5 Mile

Do you love noodles? Go to Marukame Udon. Enough said. This locally ran, incredibly popular Noodle House is located just down the street from Ambassador Waikiki Hotel. The loyal and first-time guests enjoy the casual, ‘order at the counter’ setting. Marukame Udon is infamous for their artisan made-to-order Japanese Sanuki Udon noodles made from flour and salt imported from Japan. The house made noodles and variety of dishes offered are part of what sets Marukame Udon apart from the highly competitive Japanese-style Noodle Houses. Guest favorites include; Egg Drop Spicy Chicken Udon, Kake Udon with Hot Spring Egg, Seaweed & Shrimp Tempura to name only a few.

These local favorite eateries tend to have an extremely loyal local following because they serve the best food, at great prices and most have been doing so for years and years.

Boots & Kimo’s Homestyle Kitchen
Location: 151 Hekili St, Kailua, HI 96734
Website  
Distance from Ambassador Waikiki: 14.7 Miles

If you find yourself on your way to the North Shore, and of course why wouldn’t you, you owe it to yourself to visit ‘Boots & Kimo’s!’ This amazing local favorite is famous for a number of plates, but perhaps at the top of the list is their Macadamia Nut Sauce.  Other favorites; Mochiko Chicken, Sea Boots Mahi, Hawaiian Style Pulehu Ribs to name a few. 

Leonard's Bakery
Location: 933 Kapahulu Ave, Honolulu, HI 96816
Website
Distance from Ambassador Waikiki: 1.8 Miles

Oahu is famous for Waikiki Beach, Diamond Head, North Shore…and Leonard’s. There is one word, ‘Malasadas.’ Leonard masterfully creates their Malasadas which is a Portuguese donut with a golden brown, crunchy outer layer with a fluffy, soft dough on the inside, and rolled in sugar. If there are lines out the door of Leonard’s when you stop by, and there will be, it is worth the wait. Don’t forget to take a selfie with your Malasadas and the Leonard’s Bakery sign…yeah, that’s a thing.

Ono Seafood
Location: 747 Kapahulu Ave, Honolulu, HI 96816
Telephone: 808-732-4806
Distance from Ambassador Waikiki: 1.9 Miles

This is what you would refer to an unassuming, gem of a local eatery with NO frills and ALL great food. Ono Seafood is a counter service restaurant specializing in some of the best Ahi Poke bowls that you’ll try anywhere.

Bob’s BBQ
Location: 1366 Dillingham Blvd., Honolulu, HI 96817 
Website
Distance from Ambassador Waikiki: 5.2 Miles

If you are needing to satisfy your BBQ cravings while on Oahu, Bob’s BBQ is the place to find. Bob’s serves proper Western Style BBQ, drive-in style. Bob’s BBQ also serves up tasty Seafood and Teriyaki Chicken, Beef, Baby Back Ribs, Hibachi Chicken and other satisfying plates. If you’re feeling particularly hungry try their Giant Burger – it is a guest favorite.

Rainbow Drive-in
Location: 3308 Kanaina Ave, Honolulu, HI 96815
Website
Distance from Ambassador Waikiki: 1.5 Miles

Rainbow Drive-in is as famous as Diamond Head or any other Oahu landmark…but this landmark serves incredible counter service style local food that is not to be missed since 1961. Winner of impressive accolades including Honolulu Star Advertiser’s ‘Best Diner’ and Honolulu Magazine’s ‘Best of the Best Loco Moco and Cheap Eats.’ Tasty favorites include; BBQ Beef plate, Loco Moco plate, Rainbow Royal Burger, BBQ Burger, BBQ Ahi plate, Fried Saimin with BBQ Beef plate….and just about everything else on the menu!

One of the best things to do on Oahu is discovering all the great local and local favorite restaurants on the island. Not only on these eateries very popular with locals but they are often affordable options you will surely want to try! 

Our latest Oahu Travel Blog article, 'Best Oahu Restaurants: Eat like a local on Oahu’ introduces you to the best and ‘can’t miss’ eateries on Oahu.  

Be sure to visit our Oahu Visitors Guide for more articles on things to do, see and experience during your next visit to Oahu.

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