Ala Moana Foodland pano


And then there were only seven.  Seven original stores left at Ala Moana Center after Foodland.  At 5:00 PM on Saturday, 12/13/14 – Ala Moana Foodland closed its doors for good.  Although not in the same location in the mall, Foodland was there since the mall opened in 1959.


I remember when Foodland used to be located on the street level, makai side, in the center of the mall.  There were two entrances into Foodland.  The main entrance was facing the ocean.  There was a long ramp just inside of the doors that took you right inside the market.  And the other entrance was the stairs leading down from the McDonalds.  The entrance to the McDonalds was, IIRC, across the sidewalk that separated the parking lot and the Continental restaurant.  Actually, McDonalds was built into the market – as it was “Sully” Sullivan who owned Foodland and also brought the McDonalds franchise into Hawaii.  (Do you know why the first McDonalds opened up in Aina Haina?  It’s was right across the street from the Sullivan mansion)  I remember how the booths in the McDonalds had a railing which overlooked inside Foodland.  And you could watch all the people doing their marketing while enjoying a Big Mac.


Then somewhere around the late 80’s or early 90’s – Foodland moved to the Mauka side, still street level – where the Woolworth’s street level entrance used to be.


The Ala Moana Foodland wasn’t one of the stores that I frequented a lot.  But it was always there when I needed it.  For a few years, I was in there at the end of almost every month – to by student bus passes for my daughters when they were in high school.


Then if I was hungry for a light dessert, I would wander into Foodland and check out the Beard Papa cream puffs.


When Foodland had their Fri. – Sat. sale on poke bowls, I would sometimes take advantage of the sale and get me a poke bowl with the Secret Spicy poke.  Or sometimes I would just walk in and check out the deli.  I always wanted to try one of the Boar’s Head made-to-order sandwiches.  Or one of their custom made salads.  I guess it’s too late now.


There are other Foodland markets, but the deli’s that I see in them aren’t quite a big and extensive like the Ala Moana one was.


And the Ala Moana Foodland always had customers in there.  I hardly ever saw an idle cashier.  And I’m sure it was a convenience not only for the mall customers, but also for the mall workers.  Needing a few items before heading home – so much easier buying them before starting the drive home and having to stop off at the market.


I wonder how many customers Foodland had that were from some of the surrounding condos?  And with more condos coming up in Kakaako and the ones already built in the Ala Moana/Ward area – where are they going to do their marketing now?  Closest place might be Don Quijote.


Some people are speculating that Whole Foods will open at Ala Moana Center, but I don’t think so as they’re planning to build a Whole Foods by Ward – where Nordstrom Rack and Office Depot was.  *Tip: Wanna be rich?  Open a supermarket in Kakaako.  With all the highrises coming up there – people will want a grocery close by.  About the closest one now is the Safeway on Beretania.  That’s quite a hike from Kakaako.


So yes, the Ala Moana Foodland will surely be missed.  People may not realize it yet – but they will.


Oh, the Foodland orange chiffon cake is ono.  Real ono.  I used to always check out the price in the Ala Moana Foodland to see if they were on sale.


What are some of your memories of the Ala Moana Foodland.  Will the closing impact you in any way?  And without Googling it – can you name the last seven original stores left in Ala Moana center?


Ala Moana Foodland mahalo



Christmas Party – this Saturday with Funkshun!  Guest appearance by Santa Claus.


Cakes and Pies, Oh My…

23 September 2013

Earlier this month on the Need Help Finding Bakery Owners – Shan’s Bakery, we touched upon – in the comments – how Chantilly cake was a Hawaii thing.  I quoted Wikipedia’s definition:


The Chantilly cake is a delicacy in Hawaiʻi, dating back to the 1950s. Usually, Chantilly cakes are chocolate cakes with a Chantilly frosting, which is essentially the coconut frosting from a German chocolate cake without the coconut. This is in contrast to the typical usage of creme Chantilly, which refers to sweetened whipped cream.


I commented that it’s odd that we – living in Hawaii – would remove coconut instead of adding it.


But MLC reader and commenter ~ Lori ~ emailed me with her 6-part tutorial on how to make Chantilly cake.  Check out out here:


And if you do give it a shot, I’d be glad to taste-test a slice for you.


Just yesterday, daughter #2 and I were talking about how I didn’t get a cake for my birthday this year and that I should get one now.  But I said that I didn’t want just any old cake.  I wanted an old fashioned orange chiffon cake.  The square kine with the orange marmalade type topping.  Like the kine that Bakery Kapiolani used to have.


Then I remembered that I posted a picture of one a little while ago.


Bakery Orange Chiffon


It was from either Deluxe Pastry Shop or Kaneohe Bakery.  I think it’s about time to make a trip out to the Windward side.


I remember when I was working in Kapahulu, someone brought in a pumpkin/custard pie from Bea’s Bakery in Kaimuki.  It was the first time that I had ever seen a pumpkin/custard pie.  I was amazed at the layer of pumpkin on the bottom and the layer of custard on top of it.  Unlike other places where it’s swirled together, this pie had layers!  Needless to say, I was a big fan of this new-found dessert.


So one Thanksgiving day, I decided to run down to Bea’s Bakery to pick up a couple of these delicious pies.  But I thought I’d head down earlier in the day – say, around 9:00AM – in case they were going to sell out.  So I pass by and see that they’re open and there’s no line!  Perfect, I thought.  I walk in there and ask for a couple of their special pumpkin/custard pies.  They ask me for my name and ask when I called in my order.  Called in my order?  No, I’m just walking in.  Then they said that they only have phone orders left.  Shucks!  Maybe I should’ve went earlier.  Folks later told me that if I wanted pies from Bea’s Bakery on Thanksgiving Day, I need to be in line like at 5:00AM.  Ha!  Too late now as Bea’s Bakery is just an MLC memory.


Remember the frozen coffee cake you could by in the grocery store?  It was the Dutch Girl brand that Granny Goose used to hawk on TV and radio.  It came in the tin tray with the waxy thin cardboard cover – with the most scrumptious picture on it.  It had that butter topping that dripped down the side, with some chopped nuts on top.  It was ono when eaten still little bit cold.  I’m sure if I drank coffee way back then, it would’ve been perfect.


One more.  Who remembers this what this place was famous for?




Yup, Honey Castilla cake from Bunmeido.


Castella Cake


I remember the first time my mom busted out this gem.  I thought, “Oooh, pound cake”.  But when I started munching on it, I knew that this wasn’t any ordinary pound cake.  There was something very special about this cake.  It had so much taste.  Then every so often I used to buy a slab of this delicacy to savor the delicious flavors.  And because it was so rich, it didn’t take too many slices to be satisfied.


But alas, my lactose intolerance caused me to stop enjoying Castella cake.  I understand that the Bunmeido bakery is no longer in existence.  Does anyone know where I can get my hands on some Castella cake?  (Lactaid to the rescue).


What are your favorite cakes or pies?  What are some cake or pie desserts that you remember from small kid time?  Are they still available today?  Do you know of some hole-in-the-wall bakeries with special pies or cakes?  Share your secrets with us!


And don’t forget to check out Lori’s Guava Rose page.  And be sure to subscribe for email notifications of new posts.  I did.



Black Friday 2013…

20131129 Magic Mushroom III

Thursday 3 – SKT Favorites

19 September 2013

We’re talking SKT (Small Kid Time) Favorites.  You know the drill – answer the Thursday 3 questions.  Don’t hesitate to answer them more than once as sometimes our memories are jogged later on after reading other people’s replies.  And as always, additional comments/stories/confessions are encouraged.


So here we go:


  1. What was your favorite SKT toy?
  2. What was your favorite SKT treat?
  3. What was your favorite SKT holiday?


Okay, here’s my replies:


  1. What was your favorite SKT toy?
    I would have to say that my favorite SKT toy was my Mattel Crackfire Winchester rifle.
    This toy was my favorite because it always worked!  It didn’t need batteries or paper shots.  It just required one crank on the lever and the sound of the shot being fired would come out from the speaker in the butt of the rifle.  I don’t know how they did it – making a toy that emits a sound mechanically.  But when I used to sniff into the speaker, I swear I could smell gun powder – like the paper shot kine.  Eventually, the lever got hard to crank and I broke it off trying to force it.  But it lasted a long time!  Almost 2 Christmas’.
  2. What was your favorite SKT treat?
    Wow, candy.  Shave ice.  Cracked seed.  Nope.  I think my favorite treat was the orange chiffon cake that I used to get on my birthday.  I had to wait a whole year – which I suppose is what made it a favorite.  I’m not talking about the round ring kine orange chiffon cake that you can buy at the markets.  I’m talking about the square kine with the orange jam like topping and white whipped cream edges.  Like the kine from Bakery Kapiolani.
  3. What was your favorite SKT holiday?
    Gotta be Christmas.  Especially the anticipation leading up to Christmas.  All the toy commercials starting after Halloween.  And two weeks of no school during the Christmas break!  All the toys and gifts on Christmas day.  Followed with New Years eve when we could play with firecrackers!  It’s like Halloween was the prelude and Thanksgiving was the test of patience – before the big Christmas holiday!  Definitely my favorite holiday.

Okay, your turn to share your SKT (Small Kid Time) Favorites replies.


Get ready for another Magic Mushroom Reunion event coming up in November: Audissey and Friends, White Light, and Power Point Jr.
20131129 Magic Mushroom III

As I mentioned in my last post – mom & pop bakeries are getting harder and harder to find.  And as they go, so do the family recipes and specialty items – like custard danishes.


Growing up in Kailua, we had 2 main bakeries: Jean’s Bakery and Craig’s Bakery.  Ironically, they were located within a quarter mile of each other.


Jean’s Bakery (1951)


Craig’s Bakery (2001)


I remember my mom taking me to Jean’s Bakery one night when I was just a little kid.  The Kailua Japanese School used to have meetings there to plan upcoming events.  That’s how it was in the old days.  People would open up their business to host meetings for community groups.


On Sunday mornings when my dad didn’t feel like cooking breakfast before church, his bakery of choice was Craig’s Bakery.  He may have been a bit biased because he knew the Craig’s Bakery owner’s kids.  The Furubayashi boys grew up playing little league baseball with all of us.


But what I remember the most about Craig’s Bakery is hanging out in the front of the bakery after Japanese school and sometimes wondering in to look at the pastries in the glass cases and the ice cream in the refrigerated case – the kind with the glass doors angled on the top that you slide open.  And the floor rack of birthday party toys, something like this:



Unfortunately, Jean’s Bakery and Craig’s Bakery are just memories.  But they were Kailua’s bakeries.  Even when Dunkin’ Donuts invaded Kailua, the 2 locally owned bakeries held their own with their loyal following.


As for Supermarket bakeries – it’s not the same.  Convenient, but as my MIL would say “no ono”.


I remember Bakery Kapiolani – both the Kapiolani one and the King street one that was across of Makiki Zippys.  And didn’t the King street one have a take out window where they sold hot dogs for super cheap?


But what I remember about Bakery Kapiolani on Kapiolani boulevard was the square orange chiffon cake.  They were so old school that once the bakery closed, I never found it again.


That is until I ventured into Kaneohe.  Now, I’m not sure if this picture was from Kaneohe Bakery or Deluxe Pastry Shop since they are next door to each other!  But I snapped this picture at one of those two bakeries:



There are still a number of mom & pop bakeries around: Kilani Bakery, Kamehameha Bakery, Lee’s Bakery, Liliha Bakery (which I read will be opening up a couple more), New A’ala Bakery, etc.  Some have changed owners over the years and some have kept the business in the family.  I’m hoping the mom & pop bakeries continue on with their quality goods and family secret recipes.


But this is MLC where we remember things of the past.  So share with us the bakeries you remember – whether around your neighborhood while growing up or ones you remember seeing advertisements for or maybe that special one that had a certain pastry that you enjoyed – like Bea’s Bakery that was on 12th Avenue, known for their pumpkin/custard pies.  I miss those…




LS34 band has another big gig coming up at Dot’s in Wahiawa on June 29th.  You could be taking home an iPad!


Your Special Day

21 July 2010

Woo Hoo! – I’m Fifty Two!

Yep, today is my birthday.  But it wasn’t always on the 21st.  Huh?

Many of you probably heard this story before, but for the newer readers, I’ll share this story with you.

See, my birthday used to be on July 20th.  Or so I was told.  That is until I turned 15 and went to get my driver’s permit.  I submitted my form and the lady behind the counter said that I wrote down the wrong birth date.  I said “No, July 20th”.  And she said “Look at your birth certificate – it says July 21st”.  Mind you, this was the first time I ever saw my birth certificate.  I looked at my mom and she said “I dunno.  Hard to keep track of 4 boys you know”.

So, for 15 years I celebrated my birthday a day early.

But then again we weren’t big on birthday celebrations growing up.  About the only thing was that the birthday-boy got was to choose what he wanted for dinner.  My dinner of choice was pork chops.  The fried kine with only salt and pepper.  Mmm…  Little bit of ketchup and some Tabasco sauce and I was good to go.

And of course, the birthday-boy got to choose what kind of birthday cake he wanted.  I always picked the orange chiffon cake.  The kine with the butter frosting with little bits of orange zest in the frosting and the cake.  Come to think of it, I don’t see that kind of cake around nowadays.  If I remember correctly, I think Bakery Kapiolani used to sell it.  But sadly, Bakery Kapiolani is just an MLC memory.

Then when I got older (married), my choice of cake was the Rainbow cake from Dee Lite bakery.

It’s piled high with 3 kinds of chiffon cake: lime, guava, and passion fruit.  And whipped cream between each layer.  Then a guava sauce on top, more whipped cream, and sprinkles!  Yes, sprinkles.  It is the quintessential cake, IMHO.  But somewhere along the line, the price bumped up to around $20 for the cake.  A little bit out of our price range for cakes.  Maybe after I land a job, we’ll celebrate with a Rainbow cake.  😀

How did you celebrate your special day growing up?  Home cooked dinner of choice?  Or maybe a favorite restaurant?  And what was your choice of birthday cake?  It it still your favorite cake or have you moved on to something else like I have?