It has been a minute since we patronized Hula Hoops in South San Francisco, and longer still since we ate indoors. I’m pleased to report that Hula Hoops is still going strong and doing things just as well as they always have. Lunch was chicken skewers and the Kalua Pork nachos, both very tasty.
Their small but formidable cocktail menu seems to be largely in place, including several coming via Doc Parks (of “Pagan Idol”). They have a standard 1944 Mai Tai, a Lilikoi Tai, and the Buz-Tai from local raconteur Buz Deadwax. More about the latter tomorrow.
The Lilikoi Tai is a little tart, but you can mix in the creamy passionfruit whipped topping to make it as sweet as you like. I enjoyed the topping and the cocktail.
I ordered the 1944 Mai Tai to go, and drinking it during dinner didn’t love it. Hula Hoops is using Small Hand Foods Orgeat which is not my favorite, and the orgeat taste is pronounced in the Mai Tai. So, your mileage will vary.
For Mrs. Mai Tai I got the Ube Martini to go. You can order this with vodka, rum, tequila, or gin. Not really a martini, especially when you order with rum like we did, but Ube is used throughout the cocktail and food menu at Hula Hoops so it is nice to see them leaning into this as a featured ingredient.
Service from longtime bartender Maria was friendly and efficient, and the place was quite full for lunch/brunch. Music being played is Jawaiian, the Hawaiian style of reggae, which I thought was just fine given the Hawaiian leanings of the venue. The shades were also largely drawn so it was both shadowy inside and for sure blocked out the outside world.