Oftentimes a home-cooked meal is a welcomed treat for travelers. Being on the go and hopping from one activity to the next leaves little time for a real meal. In Hilo, tourists love Ken’s House of Pancakes because they always leave with a full belly and happy heart.
There’s a cheeriness to the place as soon as you step in. Worn-out photos of celebs who’ve passed through cover the walls; much like the family portraits you’d see if you visited an old aunt. The retro cushioned seating definitely makes me think of Tutu’s house. Nonetheless, the ambiance is warm and so are the staff.
As their name suggests, pancakes definitely make most of the menu. Strawberry, blueberry, macadamia nut, banana or coconut? There’s always plenty to pass around. Just make sure to douse your stack with some coconut, passion or guava syrup. I literally am in love with the guava syrup.
But Ken’s is more than a place for pancakes. They’ve got breakfast burritos, omelettes, sandwiches, loco moco and desserts. Their extensive array of breakfast/lunch/dinner dishes explains why the menu is so huge. A textbook of local grinds, if you will, that have found their way into bellies for decades.
Of course, I can’t mention Ken’s without writing about the SUMO loco moco. A Hawaii favorite consisting of a hamburger patty on rice with a sunnyside egg to top it off. A sumo one, though…is exactly what you are thinking. Huge! So huge that the waitresses ring a bell anytime someone orders them.
Photo Courtesy: Makana Kane
• 1730 Kamehameha Ave., Hilo, HI 96720 • Opens Mon-Sun 6am-6am • 808-935-8711 • www.kenshouseofpancakes.com