My family and I spent the 103 degree Saturday between the zoo and the fountains at The Gateway Mall. This week there has been record-breaking heat all across the West. In Phoenix they had to cancel some flights because they planes are only certified to fly up to 118 degrees, and Phoenix hit 119! In Vegas it got to 117 degrees, and Sin City had about 30 heat related injuries. Even the normally crowded Hogle Zoo was very lightly crowded as people were staying away from the sun. The Olympic Legacy Plaza at The Gateway was the perfect place to go for our kids to run around in the cold fountain water. What made it even better was parked right outside was a Hokulia Shave Ice stand. I saw a crowd of people around it and initially took it for just your average Ma and Pa shaved ice stand, but that is until I saw someone walking away with a snow cone that could have fed a small army. I decided immediately to give it a try!
Hokulia has huge portion sizes. We got the medium which looks like the below picture, along with 3 spoons and went to town.
This was the “Alota Colada” flavor which was a mix of Banana, Pina, and Strawberry Colada all in one. We also got the “Sno Cap” which comes with some sweetened condensed milk, or Lechera as my wife refers to it from Colombia. We were all in heaven as we went to town on our shaved ice. The large size, not shown here was even bigger. As I was waiting for my order to be completed I was watching the young lady in the truck prepare a large size. Normal snow shakes take a white foam cup and form the dome directly on the machine that shaves out the ice. Not at Hokulia. They take a big blue plastic flower cup, and pack so much shaved ice on it, you would think they were creating an ice sculpture. The young lady had some gloves on and was packing wide and high. I don’t see anyone in the shaved ice market competing with these guys.
Pros? Huge sizes, tons of fun flavors to choose from. Cons? You can’t really drive away with one of these in your hands, they are so big it will require your full attention. If you have a group of 4 or 5 people, then a large size is plenty, but if you have some small kids, this particular truck also had some kid sizes that weren’t on the menu, that you can share. Another huge plus was the one at the Gateway accepted credit card payments, which further separates them from other competition.
This place was so good, we spent the rest of the day planning a return trip and what flavor we would try next. Hokulia and this family are going to get real acquainted with one another this summer!
Find a list of all Hokulia Shaved Ice locations here.