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March 30, 2023

Jane's Fountain




Jane's Fountain is one of a handful of old school saimin stands left on Oahu, and it's still a gem.




While the prices have changed, not much else has, which is what I love about this place. Everything about is nostalgic, and brought my boys here so that they can experience what restaurants were like in "the old fashion days" (as they call it).



Saimin is a must here. It's made the traditional way, with long curly noodles and a very light, dashi-based broth. This is what distinguishes saimin from ramen - the broth. 



BBQ meat sticks go hand in hand, like hamburgers and french fries. 





One of my sons wanted a plain hamburger -- they make their patties in-house - so tasty!



Since two of us ordered saimin, I ordered the fried noodles so that the boys could try it. It came with a very generous mound of pan fried saimin noodles tossed with dashi.





As you would expect, it's cash only. And don't expect to receive an itemized check. The waitress handed us our total on a small yellow post-it note!




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JANE'S FOUNTAIN
1719 LILIHA STREET
808-533-1238

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Visit Kaua`i: Waipouli Delicatessen & Restaurant

Waipouli Delicatessent & Restaurant has been in operation since 1977, but I went for the first time during my last trip to Kaua`i.

This busy eatery was a popular spot for locals, many of whom ordered takeout.

We were lucky that our friend knew the owners, so he was able to reserve a table for our party of 6.  
Won Ton Min with Fries + Gravy

I got my favorite comfort food pairing - Won Ton Min with Fries + Gravy.  So good!  The Won Ton Min was loaded with pork, chicken, and egg!



Kaua`i Super Saimin
The Kaua`i Super Saimin was like a Won Ton Min, but with a boiled egg, vegetables, luncheon meat, and bbq beef.

Fried Chicken

Corn Beef Hash Loco Moco
The Corn Beef Hash Loco Moco came with three patties of deep fried hash.

Oriental Plate
The Oriental Plate seemed to be a very popular go-to dish.  It includes shrimp tempura, BBQ stick, chicken cutlet, and noodles.  
Pancakes

I couldn't resist getting a couple of desserts to-go - the Strawberry Cream Cheese Pie and Pumpkin Crunch were both so yummy!



Definitely check out Waipouli for classic local faves!

Waipouli Delicatessen & Restaurant
4-771 Kuhio Hwy
Kapaʻa, HI 96746
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March 29, 2023

Visit Island of Hawai`i: Luquin's Cantina - Pahoa

Someone told me Luquin's Cantina in Pahoa is one of her favorite restaurants, so despite Luquin's 454 opening up in Hilo, I just had to check out the Pahoa location, where Luquin's originated (the original Pahoa restaurant was burned down in a fire, and they relocated into an old fast food spot in Pahoa). 

Complimentary Chips & Salsa

Your first basket of chips and salsa is free.  The chips were crispy with just enough salt, and the salsa had some nice heat to it!
Steak Flauta

I usually eat Chimichangas when at Mexican restaurants (I know, it's not authentically Mexican), so I got the next closest thing - a Flauta!  In an effort to try and eat more protein, I decided to get it stuffed with steak.  I wish I stuck with my usual chicken, because a lot of the pieces of beef were chewy throughout - too chewy for my preference, but overall the flavor was delicious, and I just loved how golden and crispy the flauta was.  The accompanying refried beans, Mexican rice, salsa, and guacamole made for a very filling meal.

Carnitas Enchiladas

My friend ordered the Carnitas Enchiladas, which he felt were lacking spices.  He ended up requesting more salsa to pour onto the enchiladas, and that made a lot of difference.

Service was excellent and prices were reasonable.

Despite a few misses, we were overall satisfied with our meals, and I'm eager to check out the new Luquin's in Hilo, and will be sure to order chicken next time in my Flauta!

Luquin's Cantina
151448 Kahakai Blvd
Pāhoa, HI 96778
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March 28, 2023

Visit Las Vegas - Vanderpump à Paris


I've never watched Vanderpump Rules, but I was instantly drawn to Vanderpump à Paris while walking though the Paris hotel in January with my husband. It was too early in the day for it to be open, so we didn't get to check it out. Lucky for me I returned to Vegas this past weekend so my friend and I were able to have a nice dinner at Vanderpump à Paris.

First off, make a reservation if you can. This place is definitely a trendy spot. Designed by Lisa Vanderpump and Nick Alain, the restaurant aims to be reminiscent of an old Parisian courtyard and it is absolutely gorgeous.  Enjoy a lavish cocktail on an extravagant velvet chaise lounge. I just loved it!

Our server was great and explained the drink menu and highly recommended the truffle baguette to start.  We both opted for champagne based cocktails and took his recommendation.  We also ordered the chicken pot pie and gumbo.  Our cocktails were as whimsically delicious as they were strong and while our main dishes were yummy, the baguette was hands down the winner.   

Vanderpump 75 and the Ooh La La-Llipop

Truffle Baguette

Chicken Pot Pie

Gumbo
Vanderpump à Paris
Paris Hotel, Las Vegas





 

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Visit Hilo: K's Drive In


K's Drive In is a go-to for local faves, and for the first time, I was able to try their soft serve!

I'm very picky when it comes to soft serve flavors (I'm usually not into fruity flavors), so when I saw that there was a simple Chocolate and Vanilla Twist available, I went for it!  

I asked for a cone, but an employee gave me a cup, and another employee started to make a cone instead, so I simply asked them to put the cone on the cup.  

It totally hit the spot, and I happily consumed it all even before dinner!

Dinner was Chicken Katsu with a side of Gravy.

Talk about comfort food!

Hamburger Steak

Get your plate lunch and ice cream fix at K's!


K's Drive In
194 Hualalai St
Hilo, HI 96720
(808) 935-5573
 

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March 27, 2023

teamLab Planets TOKYO

The Infinite Crystal Universe

teamLab was created in 2001 by Toshiyuki Inoko and is an international art collective with teamlab exhibitions held worldwide. On my recent trip to Tokyo, we visited teamLab Planets which opened in Toyosu in the summer of 2018. According to the founder, the goal of Planets "aimed to blur the boundaries between body and artwork by immersing visitors in massive 'Body Immersive' works of art, changing our perception of the boundaries between ourselves and the world."

We reserved our tickets online for the first time slot on a Saturday. We were told to bring shorts to change into or wear pants that could be rolled up as you will be walking in water.  teamLab Planets also rents shorts in case you are not prepared. The entire experience is spectacularly organized starting with an informational video before being sent to the humongous locker room where you can change and put away your belongings.

We went to teamLab Planets on the high recommendation of a friend because I had zero interest.  Honestly, I am happy I took the kids because I truly had a fun experience.  My teenage daughter also enjoyed it, but my 12 year old son said it wasn't for him although he waited patiently for the hour it took us to get through all the exhibits.  Overall, I definitely recommend visiting if you have the time.

Floating in the Falling Universe of Flowers

Expanding Three-Dimensional Existence in Transforming Space - 
Flattening 3 Colors and 9 Blurred Colors, Free Floating

Moss Garden of Resonating Microcosms - Solidified Light Color, Sunrise and Sunset

Floating Flower Garden: Flowers and I are of the Same Root, the Garden and I are One


teamLab Planets TOKYO
https://planets.teamlab.art/tokyo/





     




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Visit Seoul: Bukchon Hanok Village

Bukchon Hanok Village, a 600-year old village featuring traditional hanoks, or Korean wooden homes, welcomes visitors to the neighborhood to roam the streets, view the architecture, and patron the shops sprinkled throughout the village.

We strolled the village, which is full of narrow streets, steep hills, and a lot of steps, and got some great views of the city (I imagine at night the views are so pretty with the city lighting up!).



The quaint village is still populated, so you need to be very respectful of the residents while walking through the village.

I admired all the architecture and adornments, while imagining what life is like in the village.







Throughout the village there are a few shops and even eateries, as well as workshops where you could learn to make jewelry and clothing.
We found a vendor who was selling homemade Pumpkin Yeot (a type of candy), and he gave us some samples to try.


Because the streets are narrow, it can get pretty dangerous walking the village (you are, after all, walking through a neighborhood), so be cautious of cars coming through.

It was a nice walk through Bukchon Hanok Village!
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