J+P Café (pronounced “J P Cafe”), located on the ground floor of the Aqua Aloha Surf Hotel, celebrated its grand opening this past Tuesday, December 5, 2017. Taking its name from the initials of owner Jun Matsumoto’s company’s name — J Proof — the humble eatery serves sandwiches, fruit bowls, juices, smoothies, and alcoholic drinks.
Taking a departure from his specialized field of construction in Japan, Matsumoto hopes that the eatery will represent his first successful business venture in Hawaii, not to mention his initial foray into the food and beverage world. His ambition is to establish this new café in Waikiki as a popular gathering place for locals and visitors.
J+P Café’s menu has a focus on sandwiches — some of which include avocado, egg salad, tuna salad, and veggie — with open-faced toast renditions for the carbohydrate-conscious. Gluten-free bread is also available to appeal to those adhering to stricter diets. Then, there’s an impressive roster of fruit bowls (and similar smoothie incarnations) that make for lighter meals, with bases incorporating matcha, mango, avocado, acai, pitaya, yogurt, awa, or berries combined with customizable fruit, nut, seed, or natural sweetener-type toppings. Special pineapple boats and papaya bowls give Instagrammers a few post-worthy aesthetics. For those preferring juices, inspired concoctions such as “Green Matcha,” “Guts Away,” and “Glow” allude to potential cosmetic health benefits for the consumer.
There will also be a salmon avocado toast produced by former Mavro, The French Laundry and Vintage Cave Chef Jonathan Mizukami to remain on the menu for a limited period of three months. Prices range the gamut, with a simple Nutella toast going for $3.50 on the extremely affordable end to the pineapple boat capping the menu prices at $18.
The beachy café occupies 500 square feet, comprised of a service counter replete with an espresso machine and a refrigerated food display case situated opposite a 12-seat counter that spans the entire length of the quaint establishment. A textured painted white brick wall in the kitchen area acts as a contrasting point to the smooth black magnetic chalkboard back wall for displaying artwork sketched in chalk. White and black wooden panels resembling repurposed timber line the other facets of the interior, including the floors. Natural wooden shelves, potted plants, and floor-to-ceiling planter pillars add splashes of color, softening the drama of the interior palette. At the entrance of the café are the words “Aloha” and “Love” arranged in round black and white floor tiles. A lanai area — currently under construction — will seat an additional 18 people when completed, possibly as early as this month.
“I wanted my own place to spend time with friends, so I thought to build out J+P Café as a venue where others will want to gather over coffee, tea, or a meal,” says owner Jun Matsumoto. “Also, since I have a passion for sake, shochu, and whiskey, it seemed befitting to serve alcohol. As a result, we have a nice selection of sake, including some rare selections, as well as shochu, beer, and craft cocktails. After all, I truly believe that happiness is the key to good health.”
J+P Café is located on the first floor of the Aqua Aloha Surf Hotel, located at 444 Kanekapolei Avenue (a 2-way street; near the corner intersecting Ala Wai Blvd). Complimentary parking is available in the open-air parking lot adjacent to the property, at the corner of Ala Wai Boulevard and Kanekapolei Avenue. The café is open from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. daily, with the menu served all day.
Following is the Tasty Island’s photo coverage of the grand opening event. Enjoy. ;-)
Reverend Kapono Souza performs a Hawaiian blessing for the business and those in attendance for the grand opening
The J+P Cafe Aloha Hawaii Team (image source: Nao Suzo/FB)
Hawaiian Reverend Kapono Souza (not related to Pomai)
Pomai with Kelly Simek, Weather Anchor for KHON2 News
Pomai with Olena Rubin Heu, Miss Hawaii 2004 and former personality at KHON2 News (Olena will soon have her own lifestyle segment on KITV4 news)
Special shout-out to Sean Morris, President of Advertising Associates International… once again, mahalos for the invite!
In the lobby of the Aqua Aloha Surf Waikiki Hotel
444 Kanekapolei St. #C-4
Honolulu, Hawaii 96815
Tel. (808) 784-1313
@jpcafehawaii on instagram