For my third Travel Treat, I’m giving love to Matsumoto’s Shave Ice on Oahu’s North Shore. I grew up with a shave ice store down the street (and, yes, it was genuine Hawaiian shave ice and not sno cones), but I hadn’t had one in years. So, after reading much praise for Matsumoto’s, I braved the absurdly long line to judge for myself.
Rather than go for the kiddie favorite The Rainbow, I dove right in and ordered two customized ices — both with flavored tropical syrups as I was in Hawaii after all. It ended up a showdown of Lilikoi (aka passionfruit) and Mango versus Lilikoi, Guava, and Pineapple (both on a base of ice cream and azuki beans); the Lilikoi, Guava, Pineapple won me over not only for its colorful looks but also for its tastiness. I plopped down on the sidewalk and went to town like a kid at the State Fair and I enjoyed it so much that I was almost able to block out the killer brain freeze that followed — almost but not quite.