NRN: Hawaiian food gains traction on the mainland
NRN: Hawaiian food gains traction on the mainland

Spam, loco moco and kaula pork are making their way onto menus

After the wave of poke came to the mainland just a few years ago, a new Hawaiian cuisine is having a moment: loco moco. According to Nation's Restaurant News, the local favorite consists of white rice, topped with hamburger, a sunny-side-up egg and is covered in gravy. 

“People are becoming more curious about food and noticing that Hawaiian cuisine is more than what we once thought,” said Troy Guard, chef and owner of eight concepts across Denver. “It is this melting pot of the Pacific Rim, so really all of these flavors and combinations infused in a diverse culture of food.” 

Research from Datassential Menu Trends found that fifteen percent of menus feature the term "Hawaiian", an increase of 5 percent in the last year. Other Hawaiian favorites such as Spam and kalua pork are also being incorporated onto menus to satisfy patron's desire to experience unique cuisines. 

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Photo courtesy of HashTAG restaurant in Denver.