Artists: David Bentley (a.k.a. Dr. Dave), Kevin Mokuahi, Geoff Brown
“We worked hard to get to where we’re at,” says tattooist Kevin Mokuahi. “It’s the quality of our work that has given us our reputation.” And it’s true. Located off a major road between Waikiki and North Shore, the TNT shop is not in the most tourist-driven area, but its steady client base (primarily military and surfers) proves it’s worth the drive. Everyone from Boo-Yaa T.R.I.B.E. to ’N Sync and Sugar Ray’s Mark McGrath have been inked here.
Mokuahi has been tattooing for more than 12 years and takes the work seriously, from apprenticeship to culture. “The fi rst thing we do with apprentices is give them books on tattoo artists. How do you want to put a tattoo on someone when you don’t even know where the craft came from?” he wonders. “This is a business where you can never stop getting better. Any artist who says they know it all—you probably don’t want to get a tattoo from him.”
EAT: Wally Ho’s Garage & Grill, 98-380 Kamehameha Hwy., 808-488- 2220. There’s no pun to this restaurant’s name. After 41-years as a Chevron Station, you can now get your car fi xed while you eat in one of the better restaurants in the hood. Enjoy fresh fi sh while waiting for your car inspection.
GO: North Shore Beach. Just 20 minutes away from the TNT Tattoo studio you can see why this famous beach is the surf mecca of the world. Sign up for lessons or lay back and watch the locals.
SHOP: Jelly’s, 98-023 Hekaha St., 808-484-4413. Sandwiched between a porn store and a Goodwill, this packed store is a pack rat’s dream. The maze of shelves inside overfl ow with CDs, books, DVDs, rare comics, and other goodies. Count on killing a few hours here.