More than rice at Rice Fest

Monday, September 13, 2010

I didn't have much time for it on Saturday, but there was no way I was missing out on the 1st Annual Rice Fest at Aloha Tower Marketplace. Rice is important among most cultures in the world, of course, but I don't know of a place that has our same level of cultural fusion that places rice in such high priority in our diet. Literally, nobody in Hawaii doesn't eat rice.

Several restaurants served up the graceful grain in lots of ways with plenty of add ons. The booth below was typical: You weren't going to leave this festival hungry. Sushi, spam musubi, curry, barbecue, plate lunch: It was all there.

I count one rice dish, but everything looks ono (tasty).

The event was pretty low-key: maybe 300 or so were there when I arrived, but it was a great event for kids and the harbor front is always pleasant. Terrific music from the keiki on ukulele, and Heart & Soul (see video).

I was fighting the last vestiges of a stomach bug, so I confined myself to enjoying Snow, this new dessert boutique in town that offers a unique treat that's neither ice cream nor shave ice. It has the consistency of snow: it's flaked, flavored ice, but packs a more sugary punch than you might think. Perfect for a tropical afternoon. I tried not to eat the whole thing... tried being the operative word.

See Aloha Tower in 3D »

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