Sometimes you find quality in places you really aren’t expecting it. I’ve been a fan of the French Dip sandwich since I was a kid. There’s just something nice about some good rare roast beef served in au jus on a nice crusty roll. Unfortunately, most places don’t do a good French Dip. They use overcooked, cheap roast beef; low-grade salty bullion; and soft buns that quickly get waterlogged. There is, of course, the occasional exception. That place that makes a good case for having inventing the sandwich in the first place, Phillipe, makes a seriously good French Dip (I particularly recommend their Lamb Dip). And, to this day, my gold standard for a good French Dip is the version that was made by the Harrison Roadhouse in East Lansing, Michigan (with extra-rare, cold roast beef on a delicious onion bun, served with a rosemary-infused au jus). Alas, the Harrison Roadhouse itself stopped making it more than a decade ago…
Where Offbeat Eats has been:
The North Shore of Oahu is known for several things. The primary one is surfing; during the winter months, the beaches of the North Shore such as Ehukai Beach (better known as “Banzai Pipeline”) and Sunset Beach feature large smooth swells. The area is also known for natural beauty (like Waimea Bay and Waimea Valley). But a single drive through the region will also show you that the area, particularly around Kahuku, is well known for another thing: Shrimp stands. Between Punaluʻu and Sunset Beach are a quite a few stands and trucks selling you shrimp. Some of these have quite the following, such as Shrimp Shack (Punaluʻu), Giovanni’s, Fumi’s, and Romy’s (the last three of these all in Kahuku, and the style is often called “Kahuku shrimp”). Thus, stopping for shrimp is a popular pastime in both the surfer and tourist communities. For our visit, we decided to give Fumi’s a try.