big kahuna’s / pacific beach – san diego, ca
One day I really wanted to go to Rocky’s Pub for hamburgers. Jake had never been and I wanted him to try it. Alas, we went on a football playoff day and the place was packed to the brim and we quickly gave up our quest. Which is what led us to try Big Kahuna’s in Pacific Beach instead. It’s right next door to Rocky’s and we were hungry. Outside the restaurant they have a little sign advertising that they sell the “Big Kahuna” burger that’s featured in Pulp Fiction and well, that was enough to lure us in.
[Big Kahuna Balls – Garlic Bread Rounds baked in butter and topped our melted 5 cheese blend]
I saw these on the menu and I had to have them. We ordered the BBQ sampler and asked to sub these in for the breadsticks and they did for the smaller order.
They sounded good, they smelled all right, but actually… they didn’t really do it for me.
The bread tasted like already cooked dinner rolls with sort of melted cheese on top. I was excepting freshly baked bread with cheese melted into the bread or maybe in a garlic-butter coating with cheese melted on top… but the cheese wasn’t really melted at all and the bread had a weird flavor to me. They weren’t very hot by the time they got to our table, either, so I just wasn’t impressed.
[BBQ Sampler Platter for Two – 4oz Pork, 4oz Beef Brisket, 4 Ribs, 2 Hot Links, 2 Chicken Quarters – $27.95]
Jake and I decided the best course of action was to get this BBQ sampler platter. That way we could try a whole bunch of stuff for one price!
From the photo above, we have (from the left, clockwise) pork, hot links, chicken, ribs and brisket.
The hot links and the pork were my favorite items. The rest of it … well, let’s just say I kind of wished I had tried that Kahuna Burger instead.
The brisket was okay… a little dry for my tastes but once we added some BBQ to that mix it fared better. But it still seemed really dry to me. The chicken was also dried out and not that flavorful. The sauce didn’t help it out very much and I pretty much left it alone. The ribs were also not very exciting either. They tasted like boiled ribs that were baked off and brushed with some bbq sauce. I didn’t enjoy the flavor of the ribs very much – it just wasn’t there.
The hot link though was awesome – it had a really lovely, crisp skin and I was jazzed to see it cut up and flayed like this. It had a nice smokiness and the outer skin had a good crisp and chew. Definitely my favorite item.
The pork was also good – it was tender and had an almost sweet taste to it. Paired up with some sauce it was pretty good, though without the sauce it was a little bit dry. I actually used the pork and a little bit of the leftover brisket on a homemade pizza later that night (with bbq sauce as the base) and it was really good in that application!
For our sides, they were out of potato salad so we ended up getting french fries and rice. The rice was subpar. The french fries were nice and crispy though – kind of that “extra crust” crispy.
There were some hits and some misses here at Big Kahuna’s, though I’m sad to say not really enough to entice me to come back again. I will be back in the area though to get one of those Rocky’s hamburgers again… and next time I will not be deterred by playoff games!
3780 Ingraham St
San Diego, CA 92109