By Léo Azambuja
The first time I went to Tiki Tacos in Kapa‘a was six months ago, after it had been opened for two and a half years.
I’m not sure if it was because I wanted to make up for lost time or because I fell in love with the food, but I returned for the next three consecutive days.
“We serve specialty tacos, everything handmade and homemade,” said Tiki Tacos owner Bard Widmer, adding most of his ingredients come from local producers.
Tiki Tacos celebrated its third anniversary in March. In its short existence, it has gathered quite a following among locals and visitors, attracted by the intense flavor of their tacos and ridiculously low prices — starting as low as $5 for a meal-size taco.
The menu has quite an array of choices, from locally caught fish and Kaua‘i grass-fed beef, lamb and pork — supplied by Eastside rancher Willie Sanchez — to chicken, tofu or roasted vegetables, which is my favorite.
Every taco has three different levels: standard, spicy or marinated ingredients. Customers have a choice of white tortilla or certified non-GMO, organic blue corn tortilla. Both are handmade. For an additional buck, you can have a large serving of guacamole or salsa added to your taco.
All the sauces are handmade by Tiki herself, Bard’s wife. Bard said everyone thinks the name Tiki has a Hawaiian background, but it is actually his wife’s nickname since she was a young girl in Acapulco, Mexico.
On weekends, Tiki Tacos serves Mexican Tamales, stuffed with a choice of chicken, pork or jalapeno and cheese.
Tiki Tacos is at 4-971 Kuhio Hwy, and can be reached at 823-8226. They’re open everyday from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.