10 Best Loco Moco Spots In Waikiki, Oahu | A Foodies Guide (2024)

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I have eaten the Loco Mocos at Every. Single. One. of these spots. The video below goes into even more detail but the dedication to my work knows no bounds 🙂

I spent a summer searching for the best Loco Moco spots in Waikiki and enjoyed every minute of it. I was pleasantly surprised with the number of small and local places that I discovered. I also named my top 3 in the video and the variety of those surprised me.

A plate with eggs, meat, mac salad, and covered with gravy just doesn’t cut it anymore.

The unique gravies covered a wide range of tastes and there wasn’t a bad one in the batch. The add-ons and presentation also took the whole list up a couple of notches, I loved it.

Let me know in the comments here or in the comments on YouTube if you have dined at any of these locations, I would love to hear your experience.

YouTube player

Now on to the list.

Aloha Table

a plate of food on a table

Located next to a Tiki Bar along a side street, the type you might pick up the pace to go by quickly is this hidden gem of a place.

When I walked in I saw the sign on the host stand that said they had won awards for best Loco Moco in the past so my expectations were elevated from the get-go.

This Loco Moco is one of 3 that I picked in the video among the 10 I reviewed. A complete package and I recommend if you can only pick one place then start here.

I’m not sure what exactly made this Loco Moco stand out so much, others on this list have something special about them, but it seems this one was the full monty.

Excellent gravy, a tender and perfectly seasoned Kobe-style beef patty, 2 actually, all on a beautiful mound of short-grained rice.

This was the only location to ask me for an additional topping of fried onions which I opted for. I thought they were not crispy enough but the rest of the dish was so good it was just an afterthought.

Heavenly Island Lifestyle

a plate of food on a table

Another somewhat hidden spot that made the top 3 spot and they did it with a unique twist.

Do you see the vegetables in the picture above? Yes, they are organic and yes they come standard with the dish, not a $4 healthy choice add-on.

The 10-grain rice with lentils and black beans was also a professionally thrown curve ball at the traditional white rice mound. It was delicious.

Do you see the gravy? No? Barely? The ginger soy-glaze was surprising and addicting. I scraped the bowl section with the last few grains to make sure I didn’t miss any.

I just love it when a little bit of healthy tastes so good, it makes me wish others would follow suit. I enjoyed this Loco Moco immensely and appreciated the chef’s effort in making it healthy without losing any flavor.

A short video specific to this location

Momosan

a plate of food on a table

Green salad with my Loco Moco? paleeeaase don’t. And yet, this made my top 3 for best Loco Moco spots in Waikiki, just goes to show the power of a good gravy.

Momosan is known for ramen and sake, no mention anywhere about Loco Mocos let alone breakfast. I discovered this place while staying at the ‘Alohilani Hotel, the only reason I dined here was in an attempt to review all the onsite dining. Got lucky with this one.

The Kobe beef patty was the most tender and juicy of all the Loco Mocos I had in Waikiki. Kobe beef is a fatty cut and you could see the oil separating in the gravy because of it.

Don’t get me wrong though, this gravy was epic! I have recommended this place to so many people since I visited and will continue to do so to friends and family.

If you are picky about your rice and want it perfect then Momosan should be at the top of your list. I eat rice all the time and I usually only notice when it is soggy or overcooked. This rice was noticed because it was perfect in every way. Fluffy, sticky, and tasty.

Artisan Loft

a plate of food on a table

By far the most bougie of places I visited in the quest to find the best Loco Moco spot in Waikiki and it delivered in a way no other location did.

First off this place is hidden, seriously. The name on the shop front is Dean & Deluca and the building is the Ritz-Carlton Waikiki, which I reviewed and loved.

The map below takes you to Dean & Deluca in the Ritz-Carlton Waikiki, enter the store and go through the counters, you will see an elevator or stairwell to the right. Take either and you will arrive at the Artisan Loft restaurant.

The Black Angus beef Loco Moco was fork tender and the most unique take on the Loco Moco of all the ones I tried. I think they attempted to take this classic dish to a whole new level, and they nailed it. In the video you can literally see me cut this brisket with the side of my fork, my knife was clean the whole time.

The wild bamboo grain rice and pickled mustard seeds were completely new to me and added a variety unseen by my taste buds. Bravo to this restaurant for taking risks and showing what can be done with a classic dish.

Let’s talk about the gravy for a bit. The soy demi-glaze is potent and you would not want to have this dish “swimming” in it like the traditional brown gravy. The picture above shows how much came with the serving and it appears to be limited, trust me when I say it was the perfect amount to be paired with that rice serving.

Aloha Kitchen

a plate of food on a table

If you like to find those hole-in-the-wall locations whenever you are out and about then put this restaurant on your list. Ena Road has always been on the fringe of Waikiki and with the tattoo shop right next door it doesn’t get any better.

A classic dark gravy that really delivered that flavor “punch” when digging into one of the best Loco Mocos in Waikiki. This location almost made my top 3 mentioned in the video but unfortunately top 4 just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

The serving size was perfect and I cleaned my plate down to the last rice grain, when its good you just don’t waste.

Liliha Bakery

a plate of food with a piece of meat and rice

Liliha Bakery has a pedigree for several local dishes, including the Loco Moco. If you want the most authentic experience I recommend you try the location in Liliha which has the old-school counter facing the grill.

A standard Loco Moco is served here with nothing risky going on, when you want the basic with no frills then Liliha Bakery is a solid go-to spot.

The serving size was large enough I struggled to finish it off, especially with the fried butter rolls on the side. Not to detract from the Loco Moco but those butter rolls are like heaven-sent bites of deliciousness in the morning.

Goofy Cafe & Dine

a plate of food with brown sauce and omelette

Goofy is named after the surfing style, “goofy foot” which means you put your right foot forward on the board, I am a proud member of this group. If you want to go beyond just the Loco Moco read my full review on this location.

The dark gravy here was exceptionally good and something I noticed right off the bat. Many will say that the gravy makes the Loco Moco and I agree. If you are a Loco Moco purist and want all things original then I recommend you give this spot a try. The hearty “beefy” flavor of the gravy really pulls the entire dish together.

Pair that gravy with a solid beef patty and some well-cooked eggs and you have the basis we all want in a Loco Moco. Located right next to the Hilton Hawaiian Village and steps away from Cinnamon’s At The Ilikai which is next on my list.

Cinnamon’s At The Ilikai

a plate of food with a spoon

If you really want to “dig in” on Cinnamon’s Waikiki I did a full review on the restaurant that talks about other details. Located in the Ilikai Hotel and Suites overlooking the Ala Wai Harbor. Let’s talk about the Loco Moco here.

Of all the places I visited, this was the only one that included mac salad as a standard option on the plate. If you had asked me before doing this “research” I would have told you that mac salad would be a requirement for the best Loco Moco spots in Waikiki. My mind of course has been changed.

I do love how the mayonnaise mixes with the gravy, something that irks my son but oh well :). I have always liked mixing my rice with gravies and as such this is just another variation.

Other than that this is a solid Loco Moco in a great location with staff who seemed genuinely happy and professional. I think a great day in Waikiki would be starting here with breakfast, getting your coffee to go, and then heading down to Waikiki beach for a walk.

Kalo Hawaiian Food by Chai’s (Closed)

a plate of food with a spoon

I discovered this place while doing a review of the Courtyard by Marriott Waikiki and found out you could charge back to your room when staying there.

Between this spot and Heavenly Island Lifestyle, you will get the most unique gravies that really push the boundaries of what is expected with a Loco Moco. I love it when chefs use their own style and unique influences to come up with something tasty and fresh.

Chef Chai has been around for quite a while and is highly respected, I remember his restaurant at Aloha Tower back in the day.

I did ask the waiter what was in this gravy but he just laughed and said “the chef won’t tell us”. I will leave it to someone better than me to deconstruct what is actually in it. I did find out that it is cream-based and possibly has 5 Spice in it, hmmmm.

A large portion that can be shared by two light eaters with a well-seasoned beef patty that is not bland or overcooked. This Loco Moco almost made my top 3 list.

Hula Grill

Hula Grill is one of the best loco moco spots in Waikiki

Talking about the other Loco Mocos that introduce new gravies and unique flavors, this one took another direction and included everything you could want in a killer breakfast. Located in the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort which is oceanfront, you can’t beat the views here.

Pork fried rice was standard and not an add-on, nice, thick-cut slices of Portuguese sausage, nice, kalua pork that was tender and juicy, nice, short ribs, green onions, and fried onions sprinkled on top, nice, nice, nice.

Back in my 20’s I would have fallen in love and named this location one of the best Loco Moco spots in Waikiki without hesitation. So if your metabolism is cranking put this at the top of your list. If you crave the full local flavor package, do the same.

Final Thoughts On The Best Loco Moco Spots In Waikiki

It took me all summer but boy was it worth it. This was one of my favorite articles to write as it not only got me some delicious food but also took me into a few areas of Waikiki that I had not been to in a long time.

If you are looking for some of the best Loco Moco spots in Waikiki this is your guide and I am happy to provide it to you. Let me know if you have dined and any of these spots or if you know of another one I should visit.

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