Saturday, August 6, 2005

Ken's House of Pancakes

Ken's, also called "K-HOP" by locals, has been an institution in Hilo for over 30 years. It provides large amounts of reasonably-priced good food and friendly service, is open 24/7, and its location at 1730 Kamehameha Ave on the corner of Kanoelehua is convenient to the airport and hotels, so a lot of people eat there, often.

The cuisine is what you'd get from a three-way crash involving your typical American "diner," a pancake house, and a couple Asian/Pacific Island restaurants. There are burgers and fries. There are pancakes. There are noodles. There's Loco Moco (rice, meat, eggs and gravy).

The menu is lacking in remarkably few areas. The desert selection is a little limited (but most of us don't have any room left for it anyway) and somehow, "chicken strips" or "chicken fingers," a staple at most diners, have managed to be left off. Other than that, though... page after page of choices.

In addition to the cuisine showing a local touch, many menu items use locally grown ingredients. Local salad greens, grass-finished beef and fresh fish are readily available and staples at Hilo's more expensive restaurants, and Ken's uses them as well.

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