Lifestyle

Loko Wraps: A Piñata With a Lūʻau Inside

December 28, 2017, 9:27 AM HST
* Updated September 8, 10:59 AM
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Loko Wraps in Captain Cook is a local favorite for fresh island cuisine, and now Kailua-Kona residents and visitors can grab a delicious bite at the new store in Lanihau Shopping Center.

With fresh, local produce, homemade sauces and plenty of vegan and gluten free options, Loko Wraps is a delicious place to fulfill the need for healthy, tasty meal options.

“Our food concept comes from my love for the Big Island and island cuisine,” said Mike Winder, owner of Loko Wraps. “We call it island-style Mexican food, not Hawaiian-Mexican food, because we pull different flavors from all over different island cultures. For example, we have a Caribbean spin on our shoyu chicken, and we cook our Big Island beef in Kona coffee. There’s lots of different island influences.”

Adopting the concept of the food truck, Winder found his spot in Captain Cook next to ChoiceMart and the small size was exactly what he was going for.

“I’ve worked in small juice bars and I love the healthy aspect of a small space with something besides just food,” said Winder. “We have great food, but we also have a really great menu of smoothies and we use fresh juices coming from tropical flavors. We use lots of local ingredients, which is where the term loko wraps comes from.”

Loko is a Hawaiian word that means inside or within. One of Winder’s favorite sayings is, “mai iloko mai,” which translates to “that which is within matters.”

“What’s inside your burrito matters; whatʻs going inside your body matters; what is in your food matters,” he said. “Loko means whatʻs inside you or whatʻs inside the wrap. It also means crazy in Spanish, so we have those three different monikers that signify our food.”

Winder prides himself on creating flavors that customers haven’t necessarily had before.

“We’re like a piñata with a lūʻau inside,” said Winder. “Customers are going to try something they’ve never had before, but it’s going to have a local flare. For people who’ve grown up here, itʻs familiar flavors done in a totally different way, and that is what is cool about Loko Wraps.”

Winder tries to use organic, local products as much as possible and has thought consciously about the food they’re serving.

“Itʻs quality,” he said. “Customers see the love and the care we put into things. What you see is what you get. What you smell is what you get. Wraps, tacos, sandwiches, salads, real fruit smoothies and freshly squeezed juices, and kombucha that flows on tap.”

Visit Loko Wraps in Captain Cook next to ChoiceMart, or the new location in Lanihau Shopping Center in Kailua-Kona.

Acai Bowl at Loko Wraps. PC: Karen Rose

Inside Loko Wraps in Captain Cook. PC: Karen Rose

Jackfruit Sandwich at Loko Wraps. PC: Karen Rose

Kahuna Bowl: chocolate-banana coffee-coconut-turmeric topped with granola and fruit at Loko Wraps. PC: Karen Rose

Loko Wraps owner Mike Winder (L) and friend. PC: Karen Rose

Loko Wraps exterior. PC: Karen Rose

Smoothie time at Loko Wraps. PC: Karen Rose

Sunrise Smoothie at Loko Wraps. PC: Karen Rose

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