Before going there, I wasn’t at all aware there was a Pink’s Hot Dogs located within Sea Life Park’s food court, aptly named Beachboy Lanai.
Pink’s is famous in California, known to attract celebrities, having a sort of Hollywood glam and pop culture appeal about it. In fact, they have hot dogs named after celebrities, including the Emeril Lagasse Bam Dog, Martha Stewart Dog and the Brando Dog. Hey, they need a Snoop Doggy Dogg!
Pink’s also have locations in Nevada, Florida, New York and the Philippines. But we’re at Pink’s in ‘Nalo, a.k.a. “God’s Country”!
Above is the view facing the ocean off Waimanalo from Sea Life Park’s open air food court dining area. That pool is the Sea Lion pen, which you can hear them barking faintly in the background, a pretty cool thing!
Above is the shared open air dining area for Pink’s, known as the Beachboy Lanai. It overlooks the park and gorgeous ocean off Waimanalo.
Photo of Pink’s owners with Giada De Laurentiis of Food Network fame.
Pink’s Hot Dogs owners with Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, a Nihongin fashion model and singer.
Pink’s “Hollywood-ized” kitsch surf decor.
I would’ve stuck my head in there, but I’ll spare you the pain. lol
Pink’s Hot Dogs condiment station thankfully uses fresh-dispensed top shelf Heinz Ketchup and Mustard. However they drop the ball by otherwise offering lowly squeeze packets of relish and mayonnaise, while also not offering any complimentary fresh-chopped onions (you have to ask for it at the counter) and sauerkraut there. What? Come on!
Pink’s Hot Dogs shares the same kitchen and dining area at Sea Life Park as Kau Kau Kitchen, Tiki Treats (an ice cream station) and Longboard Lounge (a bar).
Without further ado, Pink’s menu.
And you thought hot dogs were overpriced at the movie theater! Dang, $10 for a hot dog? $12? Even $6 is crazy after being spoiled with the $1.50 Jumbo Hot Dog & Drink deal at Costco and Sam’s. However I do have some sympathy for that, being like the other vendors at Beachboy Lanai, Pink’s is operated by Sea Life Park staff, and Sea Life Park REALLY NEEDS THE MONEY for maintenance with all their hungry ocean-born residents they care for.
I mean, Sea Life Park really looks like they could use all the money they can raise to do improvements, as it currently comes across as semi-dilapidated, with aged, blurry, scratched up acrylic glass tank windows and seemingly abandoned display areas here and there. The main shark tank was especially sad, in comparison to how I remember it in the past. It almost looks “dead”, sorry to say.
In fact, I hereby call on the likes of part-time Hawaii residents Mark Zuckerberg and Larry Ellison to set-up a trust fund for making dramatic improvements to Sea Lea Park. Sea Life Park really could and should be WORLD CLASS!
I will say though, the staff that were on duty the day of our visit to Sea Life Park were all very friendly, knowledgeable and helpful, all things considered.
Anyway, back to Pink’s Hot Dogs, that was another story! Speaking of staff, they were sorely understaffed where get this: it took FORTY MINUTES for our order of two hot dogs, fries and drinks to arrive at our table. 40 minutes! I mean what? did they have to go hunt for the animal, butcher and grind the meat, case the hot dogs and bake the buns from scratch first? Sheesh! Costco’s Food Court cranks out like a gazillion hot dogs per minute, and we can’t even get two in less than 5? Again, I’m not blaming the staff. They just needed more people to keep up with lunch hour rush. Ah yes, the fun of operational logistics.
They tried to make up for the delay by throwing in a SPAM Musubi, but what am I going to do with Musubi and a Hot Dog? I mean I know what I could do, but do I want to? lol Still, that was nice a gesture. Unfortunately, by the time our hot dogs arrived, they were already luke-warm at best. Still edible, but I would’ve preferred it be steaming hot, as I always get it at Costco.
I also still have gripes about their condiment station. I mean, squeeze packet relish and mayonnaise at a joint known for Hot Dogs? Sigh.
They didn’t even have an onion station, which is a standard for a hot dog stand! I had to ask for the onions at the counter. Man! And even then they didn’t give enough! Come on now, you’re talking to an onion FREAK! But it was so busy I didn’t want to bother any further than the long wait we dealt with to begin with. Just eat the dang thing already before it gets cold!
So anyway, we got two of Pink’s Original “Naked” All Beef Hot Dogs, which were $5.99 each. Fries and drink for an additional charge. SPAM Musubi on the house as courtesy for the delay.
I was actually shocked how LONG Pink’s Hot Dogs are. Above you can see it to scale with my arm and hand holding it, where according to their menu, it’s a “stretch” dog, measuring 9″ in length. Girth-wise, it’s about as thick as your standard hot dog, being around an inch. The long length giving it about an inch overhang outside the bun. Wait, what are we talking about now? LOL!
Diner K likes hers with just Ketchup and Mustard.
I like my hot dog with “the works”, also including relish (from a packet in this case.. sigh) and chopped onions. I really would have wanted more onions on there. Like really.
And? The case has a nice snap! Awesome! The flavor of the elongated all-beef hot dog itself is well, “beefy”! It was very faintly smokey, but more of a “regular hot dog” taste in that regard. The grind of the beef within the casing is pretty fine and “tight”. Overall, delicious! If it had arrived hotter (temperature-wise), it would have been even better! Again, that snappy casing is really what makes Pink’s hot dog special, not to mention once again, it’s impressive “conversation piece” length.
Actually, what was nice about the all beef hot dog’s long length yet skinny girth, was it was easy to bite and make your way through the entire thing, while notably having a nice hot dot-to-bun ratio. Because you know, that’s very important! It is!
The bun was your basic jumbo-sized white bread type, very supple and fresh.
We also ordered a side of fries, which were also delicious. Thankfully we got the fries pipin’ hot, straight outta’ the fryer. They have a nice ‘n thick cut and were seasoned perfectly with salt, nice ‘n steamy tender inside and delicately crispy outside. As good as fries can get. We enjoyed the fries dipped in mustard mixed with mayonnaise, an old school local-style favorite way to eat fries!
Summing it up, Pink’s Original All Beef “Naked” Hot Dog is a winnah! Excellent! The slow service was another story, but that’s just the way it was, and thankfully they did their best by trying to make up for it with extras, including 2 SPAM Musubis and an extra drink. They were friendly and accommodating, again given the circumstances.
While surprisingly discounting the major cons in this review, the ultimate point is Pink’s Original “Naked” All Beef Hot Dog was ONOLICIOUS! Loved it! Add to that the beauty of Sea Life Park and Sea Lions barking in the background (a fun novelty!), along with the gorgeous turquoise ocean off Waimanalo in the backdrop, plus pleasant and clean open-air dining area, Pink’s Hot Dogs rocked this ‘Nalo lunch!
Pink’s Hot Dogs
41-202 Kalanianaole Highway
Waimanalo, Hawaii 96795
Tel. (808) 259-7933
The Tasty Island Rating:
4 SPAM Musubi for Pink’s Original “Naked” All Beef Hot Dog and Fries; I’d give it a 5 if it arrived steamin’ hot, and if the condiment station were improved with fresh onions and relish — no packet stuff! — for customers
-4 SPAM Musubi for the incredibly slow service (however staff was very accommodating and friendly, given the circumstance)
• Pinks Hot Dogs @ Sea Life Park – Yelp user reviews