Shades of Shave Ice: Waikīkī Has Taiwanese Shave Ice Cornered on Kūhiō and Seaside

From boba pearls to tropical ribbons, we’re bowled over by generous portions and distinct styles.


Shades of Shave Ice explores the rainbow of expressions of our favorite summertime treat. From its ethnic origins to farm-fresh flavors and must-have toppings, we’re spotlighting O‘ahu’s shave ice scene one or two shops at a time.



In Episode 5 of Shades of Shave Ice, we’re back in Waikīkī for Taiwanese shave ice, two-ways. First, we stop at Coffee or Tea?, one of Hawai‘i’s O.G. milk tea and boba shops, for a classic interpretation—complete with all the jiggly-wiggly toppings. The no-frills experience is full of expertly developed textures and flavor combinations that for the price, and in this heat, just can’t be beat. Next, we walk around the corner to Ice Monster, a colorful new-age shave ice shop armed with numerous machines pumping out airy ribbons of milky ice, boldly flavored with tropical fruits and beyond. Between the panna cotta and the fresh pineapple, we’re swooning over summer in a bowl. Between the two different styles, see which stole our summertime hearts—or maybe it was a tie?


Special thanks to Mahina Chong for the video assist!


$7, open Monday to Sunday from 10:oo a.m. to 9:00 p.m., 333 Seaside Ave #150, @coffeeorteahawaii$13 to $15.80, 20% kama‘aina discount available, open Monday to Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., 2255 Kūhiō Ave, @icemonster_hi



Watch more Shades of Shave Ice

Episode 1: Shades of Shave Ice: Local Fruit Shines at Waikīkī’s New Shave Ice Shop

Episode 2: Shades of Shave Ice: Kapahulu is Home to Two Old-School Shave Ice Institutions

Episode 3: Shades of Shave Ice: Get Your Bingsu Two Ways in Ke‘eaumoku

Episode 4: Shades of Shave Ice: Kailua’s Neighborhood Shops With Shave Ice Counters

Episode 6: Shades of Shave Ice: Holo Holo for Halo Halo in Waipahu