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What’s Shakin’ Smoothies

July 18, 2014

Continuing on our trek from Kailua-Kona up to the northern part of the Big Island and down the eastern side of the island, we also continue our food journey.  After all, the goal is to eat our way around the world!  From Akaka Fallas State Park, it’s only a few miles south to reach the second major city on the Big Island, Hilo.  However, there are 2 main ways to get from Akaka Falls to Hilo, you can either stay on the main highway or you can take a 4-mile scenic detour on the old highway.  Believe me, once you’re on the old highway, you’ll know why it’s called the old highway and why it’s probably a good idea that it’s not really used anymore except by tourists.  Along the old highway, you’ll catch some beautiful glimpses of the bright blue Pacific Ocean and the gorgeous Onomea Bay, pass by the Hawaii Tropical Botanical Gardens and then also pass by a little gem that I only learned about a few days before we left LA for our trip to Hawaii, What’s Shakin.

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As you drive along the 4-mile scenic drive on Old Onomea Road and Old Manalahoa Road, you’ll come upon a small yellow and white plantation-style house with a green roof.  It almost seemingly comes out of nowhere.  Next to the little house is a large tent with several long picnic tables, and out front is a gravel lot where you’ll always find a few cars parked out front.  Having been here for about 20 years, this little stop along the road has built itself quite a reputation for fresh, delicious fruit smoothies and local home cooking.

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What’s Shakin’ is the name of this roadside shack situated on the edge of a 20-acre tropical fruit farm owned by Patsy and Tim Withers.  It is from this tropical fruit farm that many of the fresh fruits that are used in the famous smoothies from What’s Shakin’ are harvested from.

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As you walk up to the shack, grab a menu and peruse through all of their offerings.  There’s a whole page of various tropical smoothies and fresh fruit juices and the back page has a list of various sandwiches, wraps, salads, burgers and other goodies, all of which are made here fresh daily.  There’s also a number of daily specials written on a board next to the counter where you place your order.

Unfortunately, after having already stopped for food/snacks at Hawaiian Vanilla Company and Tex Drive In, we weren’t here for the food.  Though, there were a number of people there sitting at all of the tables around the shack itself and down at the picnic tables under the open-air tent next door.  So, I imagine that the food here was pretty good and fresh.

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As I said, we were strictly stopping at What’s Shakin’ to order one of their famous fresh fruit smoothies.  As their sign indicates, all the smoothies here at What’s Shakin’ are made with “no added sugar, ice or sherberts.  Only fruit, most of which is grown here on our farm.”  So, you know what you’re being served is fresh and healthy.  And your smoothie is made-to-order, so nothing is put together or blended until you’ve ordered it.

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Once you’ve ordered, while you wait for your food or drink, you can take a look at some of their amazing fruit for sale.  On the day we were there, they had a whole selection of avocados and papaya straight from their farm for individual sale.  The avocados were literally the size of my hand, they were amazing and beautiful.

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After perusing through the menu, my husband and I agreed to split a smoothie.  The flavor we agreed upon was called the Pacific Passion.  Made with “island fresh banana, papaya, guava, apple & pineapple juices,”  our cup was delivered full to overflowing.  One sip of the smoothie and I fell in love.  Admittedly, I’m not a papaya fan at all, but this smoothie has me reconsidering that stance.  Perhaps I’ve just never had fresh, from the farm papaya before.  I figured in ordering this smoothie that the flavor of the papaya would be hidden by the other fresh fruit in the smoothie so I agreed to ordering it.  Soon, I was sipping away at this smoothie and I couldn’t get enough of it.  It was a warm and slightly humid day on the Big Island and this cool, refreshing, bright smoothie really hit the spot.  The flavors of the fresh banana and papaya and guava all came through.  This smoothie screamed tropical, and bright and fresh and full of flavor.  My husband agreed as he kept drinking the smoothie as well.  If we hadn’t been so full from the Hawaiian Vanilla Company and then our stop at Tex Drive In, we definitely would have at least each ordered our own smoothie.  Knowing that what we were drinking was made from fruit grown right there on the farm and knowing that there was no added sugar or even water and that it was just jam-packed fruit mad it all the better.

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And while you’re visiting What’s Shakin’ you can even walk around some of the beautiful ground of this fruit farm and see some of the very trees that produced the fruits you’re currently enjoying in your shake.  I’m not sure you could get any more fresh and delicious than this.

It’s these little roadside gems that make traveling around the islands so much fun.  Seemingly on the Big Island, you can find a roadside fresh, fruit stand every couple of miles along the road.  Local farmers who open up little stands and sell their hand-picked fresh fruit right from their farm to your tummy.  What’s better than a crisp, delicious, cool and refreshing, health and fresh fruit smoothie on a warm and humid day while you’re out and about enjoying all of the beautiful sights that Hawaii has to offer?  It’s like experiencing everything that Hawaii can offer you all in rolled into one beautiful cup of Pacific Passion smoothie.

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