Eat like a local: Tamura’s Fine Wine & Liquors

Tamura's Fine Wine & Liquors Poke Selection
Hawaii Aloha Travel > Blog > Eat like a local: Tamura’s Fine Wine & Liquors

For Hawaii visitors looking for truly “local” food and drink, look no further than Tamura’s Fine Wine & Liquors.

Certainly, Hawaii offers countless bars, diners, breweries, and boutique eateries to choose from on each island. In recent years Hawaii has seen an explosion of new establishments catering to all cultured tastes. Virtually all are worth considering.

But Tamura’s is a surefire option if you are looking for the kind of place locals regularly count on. Tamura’s has multiple locations on Oahu and Maui.

What Is Tamura’s

Tamura’s Fine Wine & Liquors is not a restaurant. It’s also not just a liquor store. It offers a small amount of groceries, a collection of adult beverages, ready-to-eat foods, and lots of local products. 

Tamura's Wine & Liquor aisle hawaii
Just one aisle of Tamura’s fine wine selection.

It’s beloved by locals who will stop in for any combination of its offerings. After all, here you’ll come to a party with your beer, some ice, and pupu for the entire group. You’ll be able to get it all at Tamura’s, along with some groceries and souvenirs to boot. 

All of Tamura’s locations see a marked increase in business on the weekends. Little League potlucks, weddings, retirement, and birthday celebrations happen. Tamura’s answers the call. 

Poke at Tamura’s Fine Wine & Liquors

Much of Tamura’s business is at its poke (“po-kay”) counter. Its fresh fish preparations are second to none. Tamura’s special soy sauce (“shoyu”) based marinade is variously and accurately described as “magical,” “unreal,” and, of course, “broke da mouth.”

From the Hawaiian Style Ahi poke, with salty and savory limu (seaweed) and Hawaiian rock salt, to its Shoyu Tako (octopus), Tamura’s beckons local families looking to bring tasty snacks to family and community gatherings. 

The seafood preparations are fresh. Previously-frozen selections are always clearly indicated.

For those with an aversion to raw fish preparations, Tamura’s also offers a delectable variety of dried and smoked fish. For any seafood lover, the smoked marlin that Tamura’s offers is a must. Other favorites include clams, squid, and scallops.

Gourmet Food

We typically describe Tamura’s Fine Wine & Liquors as a specialty grocer. It offers various rare smoked deli meats and cheeses from around the world. You can find many of the gourmet foods at places like Whole Foods or Safeway, but local families prefer to keep it local.

Tamura’s also has a wide selection of fine cigars and other tobacco products (it’s up to you to find a suitable place to enjoy them)

Wine & Liquors (and Beer!)

The “Fine Wine & Liquors” in Tamura’s brand name exists for a very good reason. Tamura’s offers a selection of wine and spirits as fine as any purveyor in all of Hawaii. A rare, single malt scotch from the Scottish hinterlands? Tamura’s has it. A boutique Shiraz from a tiny California vinyard? They have that, too.

The beer selection would delight any brewed-beverage enthusiast. Tamura’s is loved by locals because if they don’t have it at any of their locations, they’ll order it for you. Again, we like to keep it local here. And yes, domestic favorites are always on hand for the Coors Light and Budweiser crowd.

Tamura's Fine Wines & Liquors
A small sample of the fine spirits on offer at Tamura’s.

Some newer Tamura’s locations have a smaller liquor department and greater grocery options, so if you can’t find what you’re looking for, you may find other local treasures when you stop in. 


Recommending Tamura’s Fine Wine & Liquors

In that respect, Tamura’s shines as part high-end wine, beer, and spirits purveyor and part poke store. It’s not the kind of place you’d go to stock the family fridge for the week. But it holds a special place to go if you’re looking to find the kind of things local families bring to important, food-and-drink-centered gatherings.

If you are visiting Hawaii and are fortunate enough to be invited to such a potluck occasion (they are all potluck), you can’t go wrong at Tamura’s. If you just want to eat and drink like a local, Tamura’s Fine Wine and Liquors is a sure thing.