Humor is in the eye of the beholder of course, where funny names for food and food establishments range from outright juvenile, to clever and “punny”.
That said, let’s create a list of all the names of food products, restaurants and of course bars in Hawaii that have or had some pretty questionable and/or funny names. Either past or present, real places and real food. Not make believe. Have funny foodie fun!
• Angry Korean Lady (Ah-Lang) – 725 Kapiolani Blvd. – Ah-Lang was a Korean restaurant owned and operated by Won Nam, who earned her nickname “Angry Korean Lady”, a.k.a. “AKL” due to her obviously short temper. She was a one woman band operation, doing everything herself in her tiny restaurant on Cooke Street, including cooking, cleaning, bus tables, get your water, you name it. She did it all. She had no staff. In fact, you had to help her clean up and get your own water when she was busy! Incredibly, her authentic Korean dishes were all AMAZING! / The funny part: she really was angry in a rather humorous way! This was Won the Angry Korean Lady’s house rules:
AH-LANG KOREAN RESTAURANT
“I’m already angry. Don’t make me more angry.” ~ Angry Korean Lady
1. Write down your order and bring it to me in the kitchen. If you don’t write down your order, I won’t bring you your food. First order in, first served.
2. Food first, then water — unless you serve yourself.
3. No outside food or soda allowed.
4. You break it, you bought it — please be careful with the glass table covers. (Big glass = $200/small glass = $100)
5. If you BYOB, bring me some too, or there’s a corkage fee.
a.) Don’t bring me Coors Light — it gives me a headache.
b.) Don’t give me Yellowtail — it gives me a stomachache.
6. If you BYOB, bring your own cups and supplies. DO NOT use mine.
7. The kitchen closes 15 minutes before closing. I’ll let you know when I’m closing.
8. Don’t attach hooks/anything to the table — don’t break the glass.
9. For dishes indicated as spicy, choose your own spice level between 0-8, and write on your order as: “Spicy #_____”.
• Cafe Duck Butt – Kawaiahao Street – A Korean Karaoke Bar with with good food / The funny part: Self-explanatory *contributed by Leighton
• Chicken Alice – Kapiolani Blvd (just outside Ala Moana Center), Honolulu, HI / opened in 1982 by Alice Yang, closed in 1995. Famous for her spicy Korean Chicken Wings (see Star Bulletin archives link for recipe!) / The funny part: When we were kids, “Chicken Alice” was a slang we would sometimes use to call someone a “panty” or “wus”. Basically someone who was too afraid to do something risky such as “chance” a huge barrel at Sandy Beach. We had no idea at the time it originated from an actual eatery on Oahu. So next time you see someone being a scaredy-cat, call them “Chicken Alice”.
• Club by Me – A Korean-owned strip bar in Mo’ili’ili, across the old stadium (no longer open) / The funny part: having the audacity to name a Korean bar after the most infamous KB bar girl pick-up line, “Buy me doh-link-ee”? lol!
• Club Don’t Tell Your Mama – A “KB” (Korean rub-leg bar) on Kapiolani Avenue, formerly located right across Ala Moana Center (no longer open) / The (not so) funny part: “My wife thinks I’m shopping at Walmart right now…”
• Club Ugly – A “KB” (Korean rub-leg bar) on Kapiolani Blvd. (no longer open) / The funny part: self-explanatory
Dirty Lickins– A chicken wings joint in Aiea, next to Aiea Bowl / The funny part: “Dirty lickinz” is a pidgin English slang way of saying basically “Yo’ mama’s gonna knock you out, boy!” Or, “Gun’ funnit keed, you goin’ get dirty lickinz! lol!
• Dumb Coq, The – 12 South King Street (downtown Honolulu) – an eclectic fusion restaurant / The funny part: self-explanatory
• Fatty’s Chinese Kitchen – Kuhio Ave., behind the original International Market Place / Amazing salted fish and lup cheong fried rice / The funny part: self-explanatory *contributed by James
• Hamburger Mary’s – Kuhio Ave, Waikiki (currently the Ritz-Carlton) / Hamburger Mary’s and next door neighbor at the time HULA’s became an icon of Hawaii’s gay & lesbian community / The funny part: I don’t know why, but the name “Hamburger Mary’s” just sounds NASTY!
Honk Kong Junk – Ilikai Hotel (no longer open) / The funny part: While it’s likely named for the Chinese sanmpan boats abound in Hong Kong harbor, it could also perhaps be the title of some gay p@rn featuring asian dudes.
• Itchy Butt – 1229 “Koreamoku” Street, Honolulu, HI – Korean style fried chicken bowls / The funny part: is that what happens after you eat their spicy food? lol
• Kanak Attack – A plate lunch and catering joint in the Nimitz Business Center / The funny part: “Kanak Attack” is the Pidgin English slang way of saying basically “Eat until you sleep”, as in “Whoah, see da’ Hawaiian ovah deah? Braddah jus’ when whack one massive Beef Stew plate. Braddah stay get Kanak Attack now.”
• Koreamoku Street – Keaaumoku Street – Infamously known as the “Korean Capital” of Hawaii, chock full of Korean-owned businesses ranging from eateries, “KB’s” (Korean “buy me do-leen-kee” bars), retail and professional services. / The funny part: you had to have grown up and/or lived most of your adult life on Oahu to understand the full magnitude that is and always will be “Koreamoku Street” lol
• Magic Mushroom – Ala Moana / $20 all you can drink; Ashberry, Natural High, The New Experience, White Light & Greenwood bands performed there / The funny part: I’m guessing they had cocktails named the “LSD” and “Maui Wowie”, and that’s just what was printed on the menu!
• Okole Bread (Molokai) – Made famous by Kanemitsu Bakery on Molokai, this bread is supple and moist, and great warmed up with a good helping of butter. / The funny part: Okole bread has its name from its appearance, which looks like a butt (Okole is the Hawaiian name for an anatomical rear-end).
Okolehao – A traditional Hawaiian spirit (alcohol) made from the Ti plant; Okolehau literally means “Iron Butt” / The funny part: if you think anything with the name “butt” in is funny, then there you go
Okole Maluna – the traditional Hawaiian way to toast and say “cheers”; Okole Maluna essentially translates to “bottoms-up”; not commonly used in Hawaii today, only because it’s long to pronounce vs. “cheers!” or “kanpai!”; note, Lanikai Brewing Company has a beer style (American Double Imperial Stout) named Okole Maluna / The funny part: See reason above for Okolehao
• Pah Ke Chinese Restaurant – Kaneohe near the post office / The funny part: “Pake” can be taken as a derogatory way to describe someone of Chinese ancestry known to be a “tight wad” with money. That said, should we assume the portions are really small and prices really high at this place?
• Pepeiao – Pepeiao literally is the Hawaiian translation for Ear, given as a nickname for a style of Chinese rice wrapper Dim Sum popular in Hawaii that resembles an ear. Pepeiao is often purchased along with half moon, ma tai soo and of course Manapua, especially from Char Hung Sut in Chinatown Honolulu / The funny part: admittedly, I think the name “Pepeiao” is more whimsical than funny, as is the appearance of the dim sum nicknamed by it. The white dim sum under “Chicken Alice” in the feature image above is a Pepeiao from Char Hung Sut.
• Piggy Smalls – Located in Ward Center, a popular Vietnamese fusion restaurant that is sister to Pig & the Lady, one of Honolulu’s most highly acclaimed restaurants / The funny part: a clever take on Biggie Smalls, the late and famous rapper also known as the Notorious B.I.G., with hits such as “Going Back to Cali” and “Hypnotize”.
• Wild Bean Espresso – Formerly located on the corner of Puuhale Road and Dillingham Blvd., in front of Puuhale Market, right across OCCC. Think of it as Starbucks-meets-lunchwagon-meets-strip bar, and that’s basically what it was. Well OK, not all the way nude, but enough that little was left to the imagination. If the fellahz didn’t like coffee before? After visiting this lingerie-clad barista lunchwagon, they LOVE coffee! / The funny part: the name says it all.
If you know of a real restaurant, bar or food product based in Hawaii — either past or present — that should be in this list, hit up in the comments!