Sunday, April 29, 2012

If Can... Vernas

There are several Verna's restaurants on the Big Island of Hawaii. Yes, It seems strange to find a review about Verna's in a dining blog, after all, it's fast food. But, since eating is eating, and I occasionally eat there, they deserve mention. Like most restaurants, it takes navigating the menu to find the gems, and weed out the stones. But, I can say that food at Verna's is probably a bit more than you might expect. First, the thing I love about Verna's is that they are the only ones, big restaurant to small, to get mac salad right. It's actually not only edible, it's tasty and I like it. The onion rings are done just right. Today I had fried chicken there for the first time and it was quite nice. I asked them to hold the rice and give me a larger helping of mac salad, which they graciously did. I've been to about 4 Verna's but the one I go to regularly because it's near my home is the one tucked away in the small shopping center across the street from Kea'au Elementary school. They once occupied the restaurant in front, which is now J&J's, and they now operate in the small strip mall in what was once an adult book store, and before that the last video store in Kea'au. The location, tucked away in the back, has me a bit concerned about their future prospects. But, people who like Verna's I'm sure will seek them out like I've done. So, in keeping with other reviews, where not everything is wonderful, I would recommend staying away from anything that says chili. The chili is homemade, apparently not from a can. I once made the recommendation that they might consider just buying the canned stuff. But, the burgers are nice, the hot dogs are yummy, there is a host of local plate lunches. They have seating inside and out, and I always sit outside because it's so rare in Hilo. Sometimes we get the food to go and sit at the lunch tables at the Herbert Shipman Park at the end of the street. If can Verna's.

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