A Week Of Good News For Island Foodies

Jo McGarry
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Wednesday - October 21, 2009
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My food week got off to a rough start. I had, in a moment of unusual weakness, promised our boys a trip to the movies if they completed a (seemingly) insurmountable list of tasks. Being highly motivated rascals, they finished them all and left me with little choice but to sit through the dreadful Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs. There is nothing more likely to induce a short circuit in my brain than the special effects sounds of giant hot dogs falling to earth and a drifting storyline. I love Roald Dahl, but the sight of giant hamburgers and pancakes as big as houses did little to whet my cultural or culinary appetite, although the image of the nation being swept up in spaghetti tornado spitting out oversized meatballs was a clever one. America’s greed and obsession with fast food multiplied on the multiplex, though, was rather an ugly sight. I noticed that my 4-year-old Finn didn’t eat his popcorn, so perhaps the message that greed is not good was coming through despite the noise and chaos ...


Someone on a search for lots of different food is in town this week as the TV Food Network films its popular show Diners, Drive Ins and Dives. The irrepressible and immensely likeable Guy Fieri is the host. He’s been in town since last weekend, preparing for the show. Sadly, I’m sworn to secrecy on the spot he chose for lunch ...

My week got a whole lot better when I stopped by Honolulu Coffee Company at Ala Moana Center to find out what its talented pastry chef has in store for the holidays. Ron Viloria has been pursuing his passion for pastry since returning from a two-year spell in Japan, and it seems like he’s found a perfect home at the upscale coffee and pastry store. If you haven’t stopped by yet, make a point to check out what Ron is doing. Fresh macaroons, incredibly light and delicate cakes, Japanese cheesecake and dozens of cookies and pastries are just some of the amazing treats on offer at the third-floor store. Viloria also is taking orders for wedding cakes. You can imagine they will be the truly unforgettable kind ...

There’s more good news on the restaurant front as General Growth Properites has secured three new tenants for the dismally quiet Ward Centre. Opening soon are Paparazzi (in the former Brew Moon spot) and Ka Restaurant and Lounge in the former E&O Trading Company space. Pablo McGinty’s will take over the site formerly occupied by Compadres.

Pablo McGinty’s has a local connection: Co-owner Steve Hamile owns a share in Lahaina’s Front Street Grill and Bar and Canoes Restaurant on Lanai. Oahu born and raised, Hamile also owns a home here. “I’ve been trying to get us to open in Hawaii for a long time,” says Hamile. “I feel that the timing is good and that we have something to offer both locals and tourists on Oahu.” Hamile and his partners founded the highly successful Auld Dubliner chain on the Mainland, where they “import” pubs from Ireland to major cities. I had meant to chat earlier in the day with Steve’s Irish partner Dave Copley, but I missed our phone connection. “Dave’s getting on the bus - he’s in the middle of a pub-crawl,” said Hamile. Time - and Guinness - wait for no man ...

Happy eating!

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