By Jasmine Jackson-Richmond
Over the last year I have notice a vast range of food trucks beginning to make Kahului Harbor, on Kahului Beach Road, their home of business. Driving past, you get a whiff of all those yummy smells—you can’t help but want to pull off to the side of the road and see what’s to offer. Somedays there are more trucks out than others, but you can always count on one regular truck being there five days a week.
If you’re ever driving past Kahului Harbor and a divine buttery, garlicy smell fills your vehicle, then you know that Geste Shrimp is on location. If you’re in a hurry, you may want to call ahead or get there early because these guys are busy. This was my first time stopping here, even though the smell had been enticing all year long. I couldn’t wait to get my order in to see what all the buzz was about.
When I arrived at 11:30 a.m. on a Wednesday there were already nine people anxiously lined up. These guys only have shrimp on the menu, but that didn’t bother me, because they had a yummy selection to choose from. It was hard choosing between the four flavors on the menu: Hawaiian scampi, hot & spicy, spicy pineapple or the lemon pepper. But I decided to go with what seemed to be the two most popular choices, the Hawaiian scampi and the spicy pineapple. My order was swiftly and graciously taken, along with my name. Then I was given a Geste stamp card that offers one free plate lunch after 10 purchases. This I love, it’s a great way to bring back customers—which apparently was working, because the lady taking orders knew many customers by name.
It didn’t take more than 10 minutes and my order was up, which wasn’t much of a wait, considering the shrimp is made to order. The strong, spicy, tangy, garlicy aroma was mouthwatering and the display was exciting. I couldn’t wait to take a bite.
Seating, however, is kind of an issue, as Geste doesn’t offer chairs or tables for their customers—but it seemed as if most people order it “to go” anyway. But if you want to eat it there by the truck, there are a few nice inviting trees that you can sit under and enjoy your plate lunch.
The shrimp has a nice bouncy texture, a beautiful pink color and was firm yet crunchy. With each bite comes an explosion of flavor. The Hawaiian scampi has a mellow, toasted, garlicy, buttery sauce that saturates each individual shrimp. If you love garlic like I do, this one is for you.
The spicy pineapple has a peppery, tangy, sweetness that leave a bit of a burn after each irresistible bite. There is also a hint of sweet juiciness from the chunks of pineapple, which balances it all out. The crab mac salad, which is served on the side, is another hit; it has a cool, light, almost fluffy texture to it and the rich, indulging, slightly sweet salad pairs perfectly with each bite of the flavorful, spicy, garlicy shrimp.
All of the plate lunches on the menu are served with 12 pieces of jumbo shrimp, crab mac salad and one scoop of rice. They are all priced at $13 and well worth it. They also have a pupu plate, which has 13 pieces of shrimp served over shredded cabbage priced at $13 and a party platter, which has 60 pieces of shrimp over cabbage for $50.
It is hands down the best shrimp I have ever had, and well worth the price for the freshness and friendly service. For more information, call (808) 298-7109 or just stop by the truck near Kahului harbor on Kahului Beach Road Tuesday through Saturday, from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (or until they run out of shrimp).