Cafe Turmeric

Cafe Turmeric - Authentic Indian Cuisine in Hanalei
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

Enjoy the spices and flavors of Cafe Turmeric as you sit outside and take in the island. The food truck’s curries, naan bread, and mango smoothies are best enjoyed under one of the picnic table’s umbrellas, but you can get food to-go too.

- The HawaiianIslands.com Local Expert Team

Cafe Turmeric serves up some genuinely delicious Indian cuisine in an outdoor setting. Come for the food truck’s delicious international cuisine, and enjoy the surroundings while you eat at one of the picnic tables.

The menu at Cafe Turmeric features many classics from India, with a healthy emphasis on curries. Coconut Veg Curry, Uno Fish Curry, and Coconut Shrimp Curry all are made with the same rich curry sauce. Alternatively, the Chana Palak (chickpeas and spinach), Dal (spiced lentil stew), and Onu Fish Vindaloo (fish in onion-curry sauce) are just as good.

Of course, no Indian lunch or dinner would be complete without naan. Get a piece of Naan Bread for an appetizer or a side, and order another piece of Sweet Naan for a dessert that can be eaten as you go.

The two main beverages are Hibiscus Tea and Mango Lassi, and both are worth getting. The lassi is especially good if you’re looking for something sweet or want just a little snack.

All of this is served in an outdoor setting from a food truck. Order at the window, and they’ll call when everything’s ready. In the meantime, take a seat at one of the picnic tables and enjoy the Hawaiian setting. 

A few of our favorite menu items at Cafe Turmeric include:

Coconut Shrimp Curry
An Indian take on the island classic, these coconut shrimp are lightly sauteed in a housemade coconut curry and tomato sauce. The dish is infused with traditional Indian spices and fresh cilantro for a tropical curry that has depth.

Dal
A red lentil stew that’s simmered with root plants, including onion, garlic, and ginger. The mixture is again flavored with Indian spices and cilantro, which provide depth and flavor.

Mango Lassi
A common beverage in India, Mango Lassi is one of the most popular and convenient ways to enjoy this fruit. Have a smoothie of mangos that can be sipped as you sit or stroll.

Naan Bread
Fresh-baked traditional Indian flatbread served with butter. You’ll be wondering why more restaurants serve regular rolls after having this variation of bread and butter.

Sweet Naan
Perfect for dessert, the Sweet Naan adds honey, coconut flakes, and cinnamon to that traditional naan. It’s perfectly sweet, and not too dense for enjoying on a hot day. Order one to go, and don’t expect to be sharing.

You’ll find no shortage of good Hawaiian dishes to try when visiting Kauai. If you need a break from the island mainstays and specialties, though, come to Cafe Turmeric. The Indian cuisine is entirely different but just as good.

Insider Tips:
-As a natural byproduct of being Indian cuisine, almost everything here is gluten-free. Bring any gluten-free member of your party, and they can have their pick from the menu except for the naan bread.
-Many of the dishes are also vegetarian. The coconut shrimp curry and ono fish entrees are the only items made not exclusively from plants. That leaves over half of the menu vegetarian-friendly.