Hawaiian Masaladas and Shave Ice!

Hawaiian Masaladas and Shave Ice!

After a traditional Hawaiian lunch (which Robert has packed all the leftovers for me to take away~), we headed out just a short walk away to Leonard’s and Waiola Shave Shack to get dessert.

I have heard of Leonard’s on the travel channel, but I haven’t really thought about it for my trip in Hawaii. My plans were all on the places like the Pearl Harbour (which I did visit eventually).

This place was set up by Leonard Rego Senior 56 years ago (as of 2013) in this small Hawaiian neighbourhood and has since been passed down to his son, Frank Leonard Rego Junior. He also expanded his family business to another outlet in Yokohama, Japan.

Leonard's Bakery in Honolulu, Hawaii
Leonard’s Bakery – Famous for its masaladas
This place is packed with people queuing up for these yummy masaladas. While queuing, I am still very intrigued by what is making these people queue up for boxes of masaladas. It is like how Singaporeans queue for their Japanese cranberry and cream cheese buns, or those coffee buns which has its craze days a many years back.
Upon reaching the front line with just a few more customers ahead of us in queue, this price sign (below) stood on top of the glass counter. and Inside those glass counters, are the wonder that people had flocked here for.
Masalada prices
Pricing as of 2013
Masaladas are Portuguese doughnuts.
They come with a quite a few flavours, some coated in flavoured sugars the others, the masalada puffs, are those that comes with a variety of fillings.

I bought 2.
One original masalada (below) and one mango masalada puff (already wolfed down into my tummy).

I still cannot differentiate much between the regular doughnuts with the masaladas, however, the masaladas definitely have a softer, chewy dough compared to the hard, dense doughnuts I get in the local bakery.

If you want to compare masaladas with J Co. doughnuts (Singapore version, of course); I feel that dough of J Co. doughnuts are less dense than masaladas. The dough of J.Co makes room for the creamy glaze on top, but masalada dough itself is the celebrity.

I prefer the original masaladas compared to the mango filled puff.

Original Sugar Masalada
Original Sugar masalada

If you have read this far, are you curious what Li Hing Sugar is? Well, for starters, Li Hing Sugar is made from Li Hing Mui. And if you continue reading, I will tell you more later.

Once we have packed our masaladas, we head further down the road to the Waiola Shave Shack.

Wait a min, you heard of it?
Yup, the Waiola Shave Shack was actually featured in the hit series Hawaii-Five-O.

Waiola Shave Ice Set – Photo Courtesy of tastyislandhawaii.com

But hold on a sec. This isn’t the REAL shave shack!
The Waiola Shave Ice Shack was made up! 

Now this below, is the real McCoy~

Waiola Shave Ice Shack at Mokihana Street, Honolulu
Waiola Shave Ice Shack – Robert’s buying the shave ice at the window

This is the real Waiola Shave Ice Shack in Mokihana Street. The original “flagship” Waiola Shave Ice is actually on Waiola street, north of the island, way far away for someone taking the public transport.

Hawaii Five O Shave Ice Combi
Hawaii Five O Shave Ice Combi – Lilikoi(Passion fruit), Lychee and Cotton Candy

Of course, this place does serves up the Hawaii-Five-O Shave Ice if you really want it.

There is a huge variety of flavours at Waiola. I seriously didn’t know where to start or what to pick but Robert said it was pretty simple just starting from the left panel and proceed right.

Robert and I took the small size one, cause he said he would only have large cup on a day if he had not had a full meal. So we decided on that.

Waiola Shave Ice
Robert’s Waiola shave ice cup

Robert has made many comparison on the different shave ice across the island (he’s a chef, you must remember) and he claims that Waiola’s shave ice is the best there is and he won’t even want to try the other brands no more.

I was impressed. It must really be THAT GOOD, huh? 
Well, let’s see.

He chose Watermelon, passionfruit and pink guava. I chose lychee and mango.

Waiola Shave Ice
My Waiola shave ice cup

I decided on these 2 flavours simply because I had too many fake lychee and mango flavours back in Singapore whenever I want that ice blended drink from the local bubble tea shops. So I thought, the best way to tell if this is the good stuff is to challenge these 2 flavours.

This is oh-so-freaking GOOD!!!

The ice, the shave ice, is so fine that is just literally, MELTS when it reaches your tongue.
Like a thin slice of glacier melting into a pool of water inside your mouth.

The lychee syrup on the ice is just like the lychee drink we have in markets, every drop of sweet nectar in that syrup accompanied with little bits of fruit itself.
The mango is absolutely fantastic. It’s a tad sweet for me, but with the ice, it is just right.

The thin straw that accompanies it allows you to just take in the syrupy drink from within and also sucks in the rest of the melted ice in the cup.

This is one very good dessert on a hot summer day.

These sweet delights were hand made individually by the lady boss herself. I found it incredibly hard to understand the sheer amount of Asians I see in Hawaii, excluding the huge bulk of Japanese tourist all round.

Inside Waiola, is pretty much like a traditional mama store we have back in Singapore.
Stepping inside really does take me a few decades back in history, and I am sure that, this shave ice shack really did not change much since back when.

They are really the best of the best in Shave Ice business!!

Ok, I mentioned about Li Hing Mui.
So what’s a Li Hing Mui??
Here’s a hint:

Yup, you guessed right! Li Hing Mui is what we call in Asia, sour plums; or ‘suan mei’ (酸梅) in Chinese. The Hawaiians seem to love Li Hing Mui, and they do have Li Hing Mui flavour almost every other place that sells shave ice and also like previously, coated on masaladas itself.

Robert and I spent some time just at the benches right next to the shack as we continued our chat and had our masaladas and shave ice at the same time.

It was nice spending some time with a Hawaiian friend having lunch and chilling out.
I told him that Singapore is such a food heaven that when he comes to Singapore, I shall flood him with food. LOL~

Thanks Robert and I hope to see you soon!!

Waiola Shave Ice
3113 Mokihana Street, Honolulu, HI 96816
Neighbourhood: Kaimuki
Tel: (808) 735-8886
FB: facebook.com/WaiolaShaveIce
Opening Hours:
Mon – Thurs: 10am – 6pm
Fri – Sun: 10am – 6:30pm

Leonard’s Bakery
933 Kapahulu Ave
Honolulu, HI 96816
Neighbourhood: Kaimuki
Tel: (808) 737-5591
website: leonardshawaii.com

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