My Guide to Summer & Savory Eats in So-Cal

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Summer is slipping away, and I have this song on repeat (ohh uh oh those summer niiights).  We’ve had a lot going on these past few months, some good things, some sad. Saying farewell to loved ones, planning our future life (after grad school…does it ever end??), getting sick (really, does there need to be a summer flu? It’s going around…), and spending most weekends at the beach. And yes, I misspelled ‘summer’ in the sand. I just can’t spell without auto-correct anymore…

I’ve collected a few of my favorite eats from this summer (I take pics of all my food). These are all from my phone so bare with me…

CollagesFrom left to right, top to bottom:

  1. Hollywood Bowl has everything from rock concerts to classical ones. Fireworks too! Runs all summer long.
  2. Some bomb fried squid/calamari from Banana Bay
  3. Enjoying the Hollywood Bowl with my boy
  4. Happy face because I’m getting so full on healthy, sustainable, fresh food at True Foods Kitchen – and yeah, no post-food-coma guilt here!
  5. Newport Beach as seen from the Pier. We rode bikes all the way to the end of Balboa Island on our beach cruisers. Hot sun, cool breeze, swimsuits and sweating. Then we jumped into the ocean that was a cool 70 degrees. #dreamlife
  6. Ok, this one’s from our quick trip to the mormon motherland = Utah. This here is the Pork Salad from Cafe Rio, I get it every time I visit. But when I need my fix, they have Cafe Rio in So Cal too.
  7. Mmm Vegan spicy tuna dragon roll from Golden Mean in Santa Monica.
  8. Family home on the lake in Idaho.
  9. Trying on everything on the sale rack at Madewell in Old Town Pasadena. I always go shopping by myself, and when I don’t, I usually regret what I buy…isn’t that funny?
  10. Summer skies….how I love these long days.
  11. Okay, next time you go to Newport Beach or Balboa Island, you need to stop at this taco place. It’s like street tacos should always be: fresh and cheap. Try the shrimp tacos.
  12. I wanted to buy this Tommy Bahama – Bahama luggage set soooo badly. AKG was not as enthusiastic with the Bahama print as I was. It is still sitting at Nordstrom Rack, all alone, waiting for me to come back and buy it…

 

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Playing Tourist: Somewhere Over The Rainbow

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I debated which Hawaii picture to put first, and out of all the beauties I captured, these skinny little palm trees were my favorite. We have them here in LA, but that blue sky…we do not. These are all pics from my phone because I am too lazy to upload my dslr right now >.<

I was born in Maui, but haven’t been back there (or any part of Hawaii) since fourth grade. We ended up staying on the quiet side of Oahu, right on the beach and away from the “tourists”. I would wake up early in the morning and just walk along the beach, and just think about life (see my video on  insta). Most vacays involve rushing from site to site trying to see lots of things & places, but this so chill and unplanned, it was like something in me pressed “restart”. It’s hard to explain.

We went with family, but since this is a public blog, it will basically just be lots of pictures of palm trees and me. I know, more of my face! Sorry! But you know what they say…if you didn’t take a picture, it never happened. So here is proof that it happened.

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I ate amaaaazing pineapple, guava, coconut, fish, L&L….I even had Lychee ice cream! I’m salivating just remembering it all. AKG made me Poke with fried wonton and spicy sea weed (see below). And when we weren’t eating, we were snorkeling at Hanauma Bay (and Waimanalo in pic above), watching whales dip above the surface, hiking to waterfalls, or seeing fire dancers at the Polynesian Cultural Center. Basically, #wishyouwerethere.

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For future reference, and if you’re planning a trip to Oahu, here is a super basic guide (because every trip to Hawaii should pretty much have an open schedule).

Best Place to…

  • EatUahi Island Grill. Be sure to get the Garlic Chicken and Garlic Ahi (see Ahi above).
  • Stay – If you want to be in the touristy madness, stay in Waikiki. If you want quiet, anything on the “windward side” like Kailua, or the North Shore would be ideal.
  • Play – Snorkeling at Haunama Bay & Surfing on the North Shore of course. Rentals for snorkel gear can run about $20/person so it might be worth the hassle to bring your own.
  • Entertainment – The Polynesian Cultural Center has an amazing (kid friendly but adults loooove it too) hula dance and fire show during the day and at night when you’re finished at the beach. Visit Kahuku Grill just across from PCC and order Garlic Shrimp and Coconut Macadamia Nut Shrimp – locals told me it was the best “shrimp truck”.

Aloha ~~

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Playing Tourist: At the J. Paul Getty Museum

foggydress_getty I’ll only say a few things, and let the pictures tell you the rest.

  1. First, the Getty Museum is FREE! All you pay is $15 for parking. We loaded up 7 people in one car last weekend, so it was a bargain.
  2. Second, GO FIRST THING IN THE MORNING! We were there right at 10am when they opened, and breezed through so many exhibits with almost no lines & very few people. When we were leaving around 1pm, there were massive lines and loads of people. Go right when they open to avoid Disneyland-like queues.
  3. Enjoy the view!

foggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_getty My pretty cousin Beth ^^ loves flowers almost as much as I do. She is an amazing artist, I’ll have to show off her work on the blog one of these days…

foggydress_gettyfoggydress_getty Me & little bro ^^foggydress_gettyfoggydress_getty An truly vintage top knot ^^foggydress_gettyIMG_5715 Recognize any of these artists?? foggydress_gettyIMG_5726 This frame was craze AMAZE! ^foggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_gettyfoggydress_getty Peace.

~hanalei

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playing tourist: at the LA County Fair, Ya’ll!

foggydress_lacountyfair Oh, oops, we don’t really say ya’ll out here in LA…but we still have fairs! This was actually my very first time to the LA Fair. I’ve been to several in Utah and Idaho, but this was my first fair in California. Next on my list… the Orange County Fair!

Get ready for way too many pictures of ferris wheels, with plenty of sun flare (#sunflaredontcare).

foggydress_lacountyfairMy junior high buddy/new neighbor Brooke & I spent last Saturday at the LA County Fair (yes, it’s already over… I really need to post about these events before they’re already gone). We ate corn dogs (not the foot long ones–those were HUGE!) and AMAZING root beer floats, & didn’t eat the fried avocados or krispy creme doughnut sloppy joe (Brooke did–and said it tasted exactly like it sounded, not good!).

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foggydress_lacountyfair Look Utah, we have ski lifts too! ^^

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^^ more ski lifts ^^
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foggydress_lacountyfairI’m sure you’ll be seeing lots more fun adventures of Brooke & I, now that we’re practically neighbors (we live in neighboring cities, anyway!).

hugs, hanalei

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