Wild Pineapple Grill

I was in South Salem for work on a Thursday and thought, "Finally, I will be able to try Wild Pineapple Grill!" With their limited hours and my work location, I have never had the chance to check them out. I do love me some Hawaiian Plate Lunch though and was so happy that I finally got a chance.

Wild Pineapple Grill, in addition to doing catering, occupies a drive-thru coffee stand on Howard Street, sandwiched between 12th and 13th. And, like you do when you get your morning coffee fix, you drive up and place your order at the window. I was a bit worried about how long it would take, but they are a well-oiled machine. When I got to the window, the very friendly fellow asked me what I would like. I told him it was my first time and asked what he suggested. He said he always recommends people start with the Big Island Plate because it has both meats (Teriyaki Chicken and Kalua Pork) and both sides (white rice and macaroni salad), that way I can figure out what was my favorite. I told him, "Let's go for it" and he seemed genuinely happy that I was following his recommendation. It took just a moment or two for him to hand me my bag of food and while I waited he told me about some of their specials (I must go back on a Friday to try their Poke Bowl - Ahi Tuna is one of my most favorite things in the world!) With my food in hand, off I went to the park to enjoy the beautiful day and my lunch. Now, it should be said that they do have a couple of picnic tables on site, which I think is a great addition to any kind of food cart/truck/stand, but being so close to Bush park, I could not resist.

People, the Big Island Plate is A LOT of food. Can you say, "Leftovers?!" But, the fellow was so right, it was the best way for me to determine my favorite combination. My winning combination? Kalua Pork and Macaroni Salad for sure!! The macaroni salad was so good, with peas and small chunks of cheese. The Kalua pork was tender and flavorful. The chicken was a little tough, although packed full of flavor. The rice was good. There were also two sauces, a barbeque type sauce and a teriyaki sauce both of which were good, although, I did love the barbeque sauce with the pork.

So, check your calendars now. What are you doing on Thursday or Friday? Figure out how to schedule a trip to Wild Pineapple Grill. And if you've tried the Poke Bowl, let me know what you think. Still trying to figure out how to plan my work day around getting there to try it one Friday soon.

Wild Pineapple Grill
1255 Howard St SE
Salem, OR 97302


Anonymous said...

They are the best I've found so far! I've tried the smokin swine and karnavor bbq and was not happy with either one. I guess their style of bbq is not my thing. adam's rib was just awful. no other way to say it. My next place to try is the one in Albany.

It was a long wait for wild pineapple to come back in season and they never disappoint. just thinking about it....now I have to get some tomorrow

Chuck Bradley said...

Anon: You're in for a treat at Bomacks in Albany. If you too occasionally get the BBQ road trip wanderlust, may I also suggest Pigfeathers in Toledo and Big Stuff BBQ in Cottage Grove. I’ve also had great Que at Ribslayer in McMinnville, but am hearing lately they’re hit and miss.

gstatty said...

Finally a Hawaiian restaurant in the Salem area. This is the one of the things I miss most about living in Corvallis, good Hawaiian food. Locals boyz in particular. I'll have to give this place a whirl.

@ Anon: if you are ever up in PDX, the best ribs are at Podnah's pit in NE PDX. Its incredibly good.

Chuck Bradley said...

After a year's hiatus from this place, I tried it again today. I thought it had slipped a bit. The owner recommended Gravy for my Kalua Pulled Pork and Rice. HHHMMMMM. It was well advised as the Pork was a bit on the dry side. The Gravy performed its intended task so it was still good. Just not the moist and succulent Pork I remembered in prior visits. I guess anybody can have an off day. And to his credit, he did somewhat pull it out with the Gravy. (Note: Watch for bone fragments in this dish.)