Finding something to tempt your tastebuds is no trouble in Hale‘iwa. There’s a good mix of easy standbys such as burgers, pizza, and sushi—expect those to come with a touch of local flavor—plus options for sit-down or to-go meals and quick treats.


In the North Shore Marketplace, the Coffee Gallery (66-250 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-5355, 6:30am-8pm daily) is a popular stop for coffee, both brewed and roasted beans. They have a great selection of bakery goods and sell local coffee by the pound. They also offer free wireless Internet for customers at the rustic covered patio seating or outdoor benches.

A burger with half an avocado at Kua Aina in Haleiwa.

Eat at the original Kua Aina in Hale‘iwa. Photo © Chika Watanabe, licensed Creative Commons Attribution.

Quick Bites

Kua Aina (66-160 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-6067, 11am-8pm daily, $7-10) is great for the standard burger and fries combo.

Storto’s (66-215 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-6633, 8am-6pm daily, $5-12) is the go-to sandwich deli in Hale‘iwa. The friendly staff makes big sandwiches for big appetites. For a normal serving, order a half sandwich. Don’t forget the papaya seed dressing.

Cafe Haleiwa (66-460 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-5516, 7am-1:45pm daily, also 6pm-9:30pm Tues.-Sat., $4-10) is a delicious pancakes and eggs breakfast restaurant with Mexican specialties and a signature mahimahi plate.

In the mood for shrimp? Visit Giovanni’s (66-472 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/293-1839, 10:30am-5pm daily, $4-13) shrimp truck. The white truck is an icon on the North Shore, and they’ve been serving up shrimp plates since 1993. They have three shrimp plates to choose from and a hot dog for the keiki. They also have another truck in Kahuku by the old sugar mill that stays open till 6:30pm.

Steak and Seafood

Overlooking the Hale‘iwa Harbor, right by the Rainbow Bridge, is Haleiwa Joes (66-011 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-8005, 11:30am-9:30pm daily, $19-40). Joes serves up fresh and delicious seafood with Hawaiian-influenced Pacific Rim preparations. They also have meat selections and great salads. Indoor and patio seating are available. Sit in the bar for a more casual experience with the full benefits of the menu. Make reservations to avoid the wait.

Across from Hale‘iwa Beach Park and overlooking the Hale‘iwa Harbor as well, Jameson’s By The Sea (62-540 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-6272, 11am-9:30pm Mon.-Fri., opens at 9am Sat.-Sun., $20-37) offers fresh local seafood with indoor and patio seating. Though the decor is a bit outdated, it is a romantic spot to eat and watch the sunset.

Pacific Rim

Banzai Sushi (66-246 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-4404, noon-9:30pm daily, $6-48) in the North Shore Marketplace is the go-to joint for sushi. Sit at a table or try the floor seating for an authentic Japanese experience on a finely decorated outdoor covered lanai. The fish is fresh, the rolls are inventive, and they have a list of premium sake. They have vegan options on the menu as well as large party sushi combinations. The tempura avocado is a treat, as is the live music often on hand.


A staple in Hale‘iwa town for nearly four decades, Pizza Bob’s (66-145 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-5095, 7am-9pm Sun.-Thurs., 7am-10pm Fri.-Sat., $11-30) is a casual pizza parlor serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They have indoor and patio seating and nightly specials on food and drinks. They also have burgers and pasta in addition to signature and build-your-own pizzas.


Luibueno’s (66-165 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-7717, 11am-10:30pm daily, $6-29) serves authentic Mexican and Latin seafood, something that’s hard to find on O‘ahu. The restaurant decor is modern and colorful, the atmosphere is lively, and they source their ingredients locally, including the fish that comes right off the boat at Hale‘iwa Harbor.

Cholo’s (66-250 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-3059, 9:30am-9pm Sun.-Thurs., 9:30am-9:30pm Fri.-Sat., $10-15), in the North Shore Marketplace, is a popular eatery, but more for the tequila bar rather than the food, which is the standard taco, burrito, chimichanga affair.

A cone of shave ice in rainbow colors from Matsumoto's in Haleiwa.

A must-stop in Hale‘iwa is Matsumoto Shave Ice. Photo © chelle_1278, licensed Creative Commons Attribution No-Derivatives.

Sweets and Treats

Established in 1951, Matsumoto Shave Ice (66-087 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-4827, 9am-6pm daily) is an integral part of the history of quaint Hale‘iwa town. They have developed a huge following for ices over the years. The result is a long line that snakes around the building just to get a cup of the Hawaiian treat. Be prepared to wait quite a while, especially on the weekends and during the summer. Originally a sundries store, they still have souvenirs, snacks, and items like sunscreen and sunglasses.

The Waialua Bakery (66-200 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/341-2838, 10am-5pm Mon.-Sat.) has much more than just baked goods. The locally owned bakery also has juices, a long list of smoothies, and fresh sandwiches. Much of their produce is from the family farm in Mokule‘ia.

Health Food

Celestial Natural Foods (66-445 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-6729, 9am-6pm Mon.-Fri., 10am-6pm Sat.-Sun.) has been the premier health food grocer in Hale‘iwa since 1974. They carry organic and natural foods, organic and local produce, vitamins, cosmetics, and other natural and healthy products.

In the back of the store, the Beet Box Café (66-443 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-3000, 9am-5pm Mon.-Sat., 9am-4pm Sun., $6-11) offers an extensive organic vegetarian menu for breakfast and lunch. Egg dishes served all day, and acai bowls, soup, sandwiches, salads, smoothies, and raw organic vegetable juice are all possibilities.


Malama Market (66-190 Kamehameha Hwy., 808/637-4520, 7am-8pm Mon., 1pm-8pm Tues., 8am-10pm Wed., 11am-9pm Thurs., 7am-10pm Fri., 10am-9pm Sat.-Sun.) is the big brand grocery store in the heart of Hale‘iwa with alcohol, produce, dry goods, meats, and groceries.

Excerpted from the First Edition of Moon Hawaiian Islands.