Sometimes you do things for love. Like watch romantic comedies and eat bon bons on a Friday night. Or say “you look great in that honey” when really you wonder what the hell she is thinking. And then there is eating at Islands.
So the Monsters have a longstanding Monday lunch date and we’re passing by Islands on our way to a more civilized lunch when Mrs. Monster has a pang of nostalgia (small stroke perhaps?) and swings a u-turn into the Islands parking lot.
It’s been years since The Monster has been inside fake Hawaii and there is a reason for that. Oh well, for love…
The first depressing thing about Islands is the decor. This is Hawaii by way of chintzy prints and never-ending surf videos. This is the Hawaii where Vincent Price takes the Brady Bunch hostage in the cave.
Next thing to really bring you down is Islands lists the calorie count beside each item on the menu. The aim of this California legislation is to make chains accountable and the customer informed. All it really does is make for a pissed off Monster.
Why do buffalo wings have to have 1860 calories? Unfair. Famous Island fries ring in at 2100 calories! Holy hell. Even chicken sandwiches top off above 1000 calories. How is a growing boy supposed to eat?
So a small tortilla soup (310 calories) and a turkey burger with bbq sauce, lettuce, tomato, crispy fried onion and pickles (somewhere around 1000 calories) with a side of fries (ten kajillion calories) is the order.
The soup, it’s well, it’s fine. Is it worth 310 calories? Sure.
The burger turns out to be just ok. It’s dry which is odd given Islands hypes it is made with applesauce. Still, even topped with all the condiments each bite is a little bit of guilty as if The Monster must divide the diminishing taste returns with the added caloric intake. He begrudgingly finishes the burger.
The fries. The famous cut fresh daily fries. They aren’t terribly good. They taste weirdly stale. This turns out to be easy math. Skip the fries.
All this being said, service could not be more friendly and accommodating and you are only blocks from the beach so you can see the real thing after lunch.
So there you have it. Come to Islands because of love and leave feeling guilty.
Why go? You’re on a diet.
Monster rating: 1½/5 Monsters
404 Washington Boulevard
Marina Del Rey, CA 90292