2020 in Review: HONOLULU Magazine’s Most-Read Dining Stories of the Year

Searching for the best local eateries and dishes, smuggling (correction: traveling with) local goods, local chef stories, what’s new on the local dining scene and old articles about local companies who are making it big: It’s safe to say that we were all about supporting each other in 2020. Here are your favorite stories about eating and drinking in Hawai‘i.


Three times a week, for 52 weeks a year, HONOLULU Magazine talks to you about food: Who’s new to the scene, what’s trending, where to go right now, why we love a local dish and when a certain ingredient is in season. On top of that, we also share expanded feature stories from our print edition. In truth, the hungry, hungry team at your friendly city magazine discusses and eats food a bit of a worrying amount—but you love it. After this, check out our editor’s 10 favorite posts and the Top 10 food posts from our sister blog, Frolic Hawaii.

Local Life

My Honolulu Crack Seed Store Memories Cover2

Photo: Louis Scheer



What It’s Like Getting Busted Smuggling Crack (Seed) at the Airport

Turns out omiyage from Hawai‘i looks pretty sketchy to the TSA.

Read more


After 71 Years in Business, Hawai‘i’s Family-Run Foodland is Swinging for the Fences

Changes are happening across Foodland’s 33 stores, some gradual and subtle, others as over the top as the more than 100 new Maika‘i brand items that pop up everywhere you look. And there’s more coming.

Read more


Everything You Need to Know About Local Fruit in Hawai‘i

Everyone has a memory about local fruits, from climbing the mango tree in their grandma’s backyard to swapping liliko‘i for avocados with their neighbors. Fruits are part of our history and culture, a way for us to feel connected to our community. And, if you’ve ever had a ripe mango or sweet tangerine, you know there’s nothing else like it.

Read more


Why McDonald’s Hawai‘i Has the Only Fried Apple Pies in the Country

Everywhere else in the U.S., they’re baked.

Read more


11 Mainland Chains We Really Wish We Had in Hawai‘i

Is it really too much to ask for Swedish meatballs and animal-style burgers?

Read more


Your Guide to Mochi in Hawai‘i: How to Eat it, Where to Buy it and More

Honolulu’s mochi makers combine Japanese tradition with unique, only- in-Hawai‘i touches.

Read more



The Chef Show

11 Hawaii Chefs Dish On Their Go To Orders At Their Own Restaurants And At Others Around Town Leodas Cover

Photo: Ryan Siphers



11 Chefs Dish on Their Go-To Orders at Their Own Restaurants and at Others Around Hawai‘i

It’s not always late-night ramen and leftover mac and cheese after a long shift.

Read more


How Did a Japanese Restaurant Group Invade Hawai‘i Cuisine Without Anyone Noticing?

While you were busy avoiding Waikīkī, Zetton was infiltrating the neighborhood.

Read more



And the Award Goes to

Best Texas Barbecue In Hawaii

Photo: Thomas Obungen



2020 Hale ‘Aina Award Winners: The Best Restaurants in Hawai‘i

The Hale ‘Aina Awards are the state’s longest running and most prestigious dining honors, started by HONOLULU Magazine in 1984 to honor the best restaurants in Hawai‘i. Whether you’re looking for weekend brunch spots, your new favorite cocktail or the best places to indulge your sweet tooth, we got you. This list of Hale ‘Aina-winning restaurants is your all-year, can’t-miss dining guide.

Read more


Best of Honolulu 2020: The Best Food and Drinks on O‘ahu

47 editorial and reader picks for the tastiest food and beverage in town.

Read more



Life in a Time of Quarantine

11 20 Mavro Csaprogram

An assortment of produce from M by Chef Mavro’s CSA program.



Get Curbside and Delivery Service From These Local Restaurants

Here’s an updated list of restaurants offering dine-at-home options during COVID-19.

Read more


Get Local Meats, Fruits and Veggies Delivered to Your Door

Support Hawai‘i’s farmers with these CSA and veggie subscription boxes.

Read more



Take Our Word for It

Best Of Honolulu 2020 Food Smash Burger Cover B7f49b51

Photo: Jenny Sathngam



3 We Tried: In Search of the Best Smash Burger in Honolulu

If burger’s the name and smashing’s the game, we’re there, with empty stomachs and high expectations.

Read more


3 We Tried (Twice): Who Has the Best Salt-and-Vinegar Wings on O‘ahu?

Just the idea makes our mouths water. So we went deli counter hopping in the hunt for the most mouth-puckering wings.

Read more



News Flash

Rigo pasta

Photo: Martha Cheng



26 New Restaurants That Opened on O‘ahu in 2019

Some of our favorites include a sushi speakeasy, new locations of old favorites and a temporary pop-up.

Read more