Monday, July 21, 2008

Covenant Books and Coffee

Covenant Books and Coffee is a Christian bookstore and cafe combined into one. It offers a delectable selection of soups, salads, sandwiches, and coffee in addition to their Christian reads.

The unique thing about this place is that they have a different soup everyday. All soups are homemade, and absolutely delicious! The soups are all made at 5:30 in the morning every day! For a bowl of soup, its $3.50 and its served with a roll. Pick up a calendar to find out when your favorite soup is being prepared. Here's a taste of some of their soups: Creamy Tomato and Basi, Portuguese Bean, Beef and Asparagus, Mushroom Barley, Thai Chicken Curry, Italian Shrimp and Pasta, Creamy Smoked Salmon and Asparagus, Mexican Chicken and Rice. Hungy yet? Read on...

The menu includes several choices of sandwiches ($7.50 whole/$4.24 half), including Salami on Sun-dried Tomato Foccacia, Garlic Veggie on Rosemary Foccacia, Chicken Salad on Four Grain Bread, and much more. Salads include garden ($6 whole/43.50 half), oriental chicken ($8.25 whole/$4.95 half), and caesar ($8.25 whole/$4.95 half). Soup/Sandwich/Salad combinations are also available.

On this visit, I ordered the 1/2 sandwich and soup special ($7).

It was a veggie delight sandwich, which consisted of avocado, provolone cheese, mayo, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and sprouts. The vegetables were crisp and fresh and the four-grain bread was very delicious!!

The garden salad was topped off with a cilantro vinaigrette which was unique and tasty!

My mom ordered the 1/2 sandwich and soup combination ($6.25). She chose the chicken salad on four grain, which included chunks of chicken, celery, walnuts, and mayo.

The soup of the way was clam chowder, and this was the best part of the meal! Although it was my mom's part of the meal, I ate a whole lot of it! The soup was not a typical thick chowder, rather it was a brothy soup with a distinct clam flavor. I should have known to order the soup!! Next time I will be sure to have a bowl of soup of my own.

Covenant Books and Coffee
1142 12th Avenue
Honolulu, HI 96816

Monday, July 14, 2008

Marion Crepes

Ever since I've been back from Japan, there have been two things that I've been craving to eat: soft cream and crepes! Sadly, I don't think I'll find any Soft Cream in the states, but luckily, there are a few places in Hawaii that serve crepes. The Cream Pot (see my posting from May) has wonderful french-style crepes, but there is something about having a Japanese style crepe all wrapped up and held in your hand. For some reason its much more tasty (and fun) eaten in your hands than with a fork on a plate. I'm glad to say that I've satisfied my craving for crepes because for a limited time, Shirokiya is featuring Marion Crepes from Tokyo, Japan!

I had my first tasting of Marion Crepes last February at Shirokiya. My boyfriend and I waited in a crazy line for maybe 30 minutes!

We watched as the crepe makers carefully crafted each crepe and stared at the tantalizing display crepes to make up our mind as to which flavor we would choose. We were very satisfied with this special treat, which is why I went back for more this time around. Luckily, this time we waited only about a minute!

I had the strawberry and banana chocolate creme crepe with ice cream. The crepe was slightly sweet, soft and chewy. And the whipped cream was from Japan (I saw the packages)! I usually don't care for whipped cream on American desserts, but Japanese whipped cream is very different and much more delicious! Of course, it would be ten times better if the ice cream was soft cream... but I'm not complaining, this one was enough to satisfy my craving!

Other flavors included strawberry azuki, blueberry, peach, azuki and kuri (chestnuts), and pineapple. The crepes range from $5.25-$6 depending on the flavor and whether or not you want ice cream.

Marion Crepes will be at Shirokiya for a limited time only, so be sure to check it out soon!!

Marion Crepes
Shirokiya at Ala Moana Shopping Center
1450 Ala Moana Blvd.
Honolulu, HI 96814

Thursday, July 3, 2008

The Alley Restaurant, Bar and Grill

Aiea Bowling Alley is one of two bowling alleys remaining on the island of Oahu. Back in high school this was the place to hang out. I remember it being a smoke filled room with "less than clean" facilities and yummy french fries. A few years ago, the alley took on a makeover and with that, so did its dining options. "The Alley" now offers a nice (clean) place to sit down and enjoy quality local food. Its not the setting you would expect from a bowling alley. The new image of The Alley makes is a nice place to visit for a meal, even if you have no intention of bowling.

My mom loved her "'Handmade' Hamburger Steak." ($5.75 for the bowl) The patty did indeed appear to be handmade, and as she said, "its all in the gravy!" The smoky flavor from the grill and the homemade gravy made an excellent hamburger steak. She went back the next week to eat it again!

My boyfriend's father raved about the Mahi Mahi "Alley Style" ($6.50 for the bowl), so my boyfriend had to try it for himself. It was a very tender piece of mahi with a very light batter and a sprinkling of furikake. It lived up to our expectations!

I had the "Roasted Portabella Mushroom Sandwich" (5.75). It wasn't the best portabella sandwich that I've ever had, but then again, I don't think a local food place is the place to find it. Nonetheless, it was tasty.

Don't forget to visit the bakery as well. They made delicious scones, and their "Lemon Crunch Cake" is to die for!! It is made up of layers of white cake with a tart lemon custard and topped off with crunchy toffee goodness!! I would go back just to eat the cake! I was too excited to eat it, so I forgot to take a picture of it until half of it was already gone!

The Alley (At Aiea Bowl)
99-115 Aiea Heights Drive
Aiea, HI 96701