Friday, May 24, 2013

Cafe Hula Hawaii

We planned a little day trip this Friday and took an hour train ride southeast from Tokyo to the beach town of Kamakura.  In between sight-seeing we were hungry for lunch and spotted Cafe Hula Hawaii located on the corner of the main train station.  Having grown up in Hawaii, I was intrigued - "Hawaiian food? In Japan?... Let's check it out."

Image via japantwo.com
The cafe is joined with a gift shop that sells a good assortment of Hawaiian-related items straight from the islands.  Orders are placed up front and paid for before you seat yourself at any of the tables inside or outside on the porch next to the train tracks.  It was a delightful change from the traditional Japanese restaurants we had dined at, and brought me nostalgic happiness to see familiar items on the menu such as Loco Moco, SPAM musubi, and malasadas.  Malasadas are Portuguese fried dough that are rounded and coated in granulated sugar; generally a doughnut without a hole in the center. When Portuguese immigrants brought these to Hawaii, it became a popular item with the Hawaiian people. Now, malasadas have become a Hawaiian food incorporated into the local food culture.  I ordered one, of course, as well as Chicken with Rice for 1050 JPY.  It was a nice portion of meat in a teriyaki-ginger glaze.  A small side salad was included in the bowl.


Keith wasn't as excited about the Hawaiian menu as me and instead chose the item advertised as a Kamakura delicacy known as Shirasudon for 1250 JPY.  It was described as a rice bowl with baby sardines, and came with a side of miso soup.  There was a raw egg on top of the bowl that Keith mixed up with the rice and sardines. A small salad was also included.  The dish was a bit strange to look at (see all those babies!), but had nice salty fishy flavor.

Overall, the food was not super authentic as Hawaiian, rather was a fusion with strong Japanese influences.  Keith was much more adventurous than me (one of the things I admire about him) and I am glad he tried the sardine dish.  The malasada was spot on and a nice dessert to end our meal.

Total Rating: 3.1
Food: 3, Price: 3, Service: 3, Ambience: 3.5, Accessibility: 4

What I ate:
Chicken and Rice
 

Malasada

Plus Keith ate:
Shirasudon

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