Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens

Haleiwa Joe's Haiku Gardens - A Casual Eatery with Serious Steaks and Seafood in Kaneohe
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

Haleiwa Joe's may have a long line in front of it, but it's worth the combination of the food and the views. Set inside the lush Haiku Gardens, this location also offers a spectacular view of the Koolau mountain range. Serving up fresh steaks and seafood, the friendly staff of this open-air restaurant is happy to give you a first-class experience at a casual eatery. 

- The HawaiianIslands.com Local Expert Team

Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens is a casual restaurant serving dinner, drinks, and desserts. With a full bar and spectacular views, the chefs use the best of the season to deliver the best in flavor to guests. The fish is fresh, the steaks are quality, and the produce is all straight from the islands. 

The original Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens was founded in 1998 along the seven-mile miracle in Oahu. The Kaneohu location was founded in 2000 on the windward side of the island. It overlooks the tropical gardens of the same name and the Koolau mountain range. Stroll along the grounds to see the koi pond or just relax in the open-air comforts of a relaxed paradise.

This is a very popular place for the largely residential town, but the waiting area for the restaurant is generous and the staff is happy to keep you comfortable both before and after you’re seated. 

If you stop by Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens, we recommend the following stand-outs:

Prime Rib 
The prime rib is likely the most famous dish at Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens. Mainly because of its portion size for the price. This huge bone-eye rib eye is garnished with au jus and horseradish cream sauce. Garlic mashed potatoes and local vegetables round out the dish if you’re looking for a classic steakhouse meal. For anyone who wants a meal as satisfying as the view, this is the one to order. 

Mauka Makai 
This dish is braised short rib served with luau cream sauce and grilled octopus (also known as tako). This inventive dish comes with tomato poke, which swaps tomatoes for tuna in the preparation process. There are just enough elements on this plate to be interesting without overwhelming the palate. 

Sticky Ribs 
The Hawaiian version of a BBQ classic. The ribs at Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens are made sticky, thanks to a soy-ginger hoisin sauce. It is additionally served with white rice and green papaya slaw. The freshness of the green papaya, which is often said to have the cleansing powers of cucumber, is precisely what this dish needs to tone down the richness. The sticky ribs come in either a half-rack or a full-rack portion. 

Sizzling Mushrooms 
If you typically regard mushrooms as little more than a side dish, perhaps it’s time to add a little sizzle to the mix. Served with plenty of personality, the star of the plate is complemented by the parmesan, butter, salt, and cracked pepper. Enjoy it all atop a crostini that brings a flavorful crunch to every bite. 

Sumatran Grilled Beef Salad 
Made with grilled beef, mangos, Thai slaw, and chili vinaigrette, this salad is a departure from your typical greens. The flavors of the Thai slaw, which include the tangy zip of its peppers, round out the spices of the dressing. It’s a hardy yet zesty salad to split or order as your full meal. 

The town of Kaneohe goes from the foothills of the mountains to the bay, and it was once home to the king of the islands. When you drink in the scenery at Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens, you’ll see why royalty selected this spot to bring their court. Even if you stop by for a drink or two, the beauty of the location is likely to stay with you long after you leave. 

Insider Tips:
-There are no reservations. However, wait times can easily stretch longer than an hour. 
-You can request a table at the ledge for the best views. 
-Haleiwa Joe’s Haiku Gardens is an open-air restaurant. You will get wet if it rains. 
-The waiting area is large and is not unusual to be offered a complimentary drink while you wait.