During our week long vacation, I think we visited here 3 times... total of 4 different cones worth.
Shaved ice is served in a lot of places besides Hawaii, but you don't really think about it until you're here. It's served in a lot of different places, but Matsumoto's is probably the best advertised. Shaved ice is not water ice/Italian ice, nor is it a snow cone. It's more n soft like snow, whereas a snow cone is a chunk of ice. Weird, I know. I've made shaved ice as a kid, but our hand cranked machine is definitely up to par after watching it be made here.
Matsumoto's usually has a line, but it moves quite quickly (you can tell they've been doing this awhile). Depending on the line, they may have an employee closer to the door taking orders and marking it on the paper cones and/or bowls (depending on size). Just take the cone and bring up to the counter when it's your turn.
The flavors are listed on a giant board hanging above the counter. Amazing how many types they have there and if I'm not mistaken I believe they make the syrups there. Or so I think I heard from Food Network. You can mix and flavors you want, or choose a popular mix they have. Also option to have vanilla ice cream and/or azuki beans (red beans) in bottom of the cone AND condensed milk on top on the shaved ice. Don't forget to get the holder! $0.30 more, but at least you won't have dripping shaved ice everywhere.
First time we went, we were heading there specifically. Other 2 times was because we were in area and wanted a sweet dessert. First time we had a small Hawaiian (I forget the 3 flavors mixed) with ice cream, azuki beans, and condensed milk. So gooooood, but definitely too much.
Second time, we ordered two smalls, but left out the ice cream and beans as it made us too full from the sugar. I got orange/green apple mix with condensed milk while my wife got the rainbow mix.
Third trip was a mix on orange, green apple, lychee, and grape with condensed milk. The condensed milk really does make it. Makes it creamy and extra sweet.
Matsumoto's isn't the only place that offers shaved ice, so try a few places. A few places we went, we lucked out and they were on lunch break. We did try a place called Krave in Kapolei, but it's main thing is yogurt. Instead of ice cream, they offer mochi. They also put the beans in a hole they make in the top of shaved ice instead of in cone. Also delicious!
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.