Back in 2016 I did an initial post meant to be a series titled “Kokonut Wireless“. Essentially a compilation of current foodie news, along with personal commentary, in honor of the original “Coconut Wireless” by none other than Hal Lewis, a.k.a. J. Akuhead Pupule, a.k.a. “Aku”. That said, I do read a lot of news online (ranging politically far left to far right), occupying anywhere from 80 to 95% of my online consumption. In the process, I catch quite a few interesting and sometimes offbeat food scene articles that are otherwise burried deep in the feed, far away from the top headlines. Some you may have missed. With that, in a continuation of the series that’s sure to be ongoing in 2018, here’s the first installment this year of the Tasty Island’s “Kokonut Wireless”.
Honolulu Star Advertiser – December 6, 2017
With the dramatic changes taking place at what was known in legacy as “Victoria Ward” in Kaka’ako, including the demolition of Ward Warehouse, amongst luxury condos uprising left and right there, to old school folks, probably the most heart-wrenching is the upcoming closing of Ryan’s Grill in Ward Center. The popular eatery that opened in 1983 will close for good on January 21, 2018, marking that as 34 years in business.
Oh, and in case any of you remember when Frank De Lima and his original band Na Kolohe had their first gig at the Old Spaghetti Factory in Ward Warehouse, one of its original tenants, not to fret as they’ve relocated to Aloha Tower.
Also see this: Oahu Eateries Memorialized
Hawaii News Now – December 4, 2017
“Cougars’ den” is the last I recall Rumours being “rumoured” as. Yet to many folks of the Gen X and late Baby Boomer generation, myself included, Rumours Nightclub in the Ala Moana Hotel was a staple of the Honolulu nightclubbing circuit “back in the days”.
Well, whether you’re a hot mama still shakin’ your hot mama stuff, or just wanna’ get that final strut to “Electric Slide”, your last chance are the next several weekends, as the legendary Rumours Nightclub will close for good on Sunday, January 28, 2018, after 34 years in business. No word yet on what will replace it.
Also see this: Oahu Bars & Nightclubs Memorialized
KHON2 News – November 30, 2017
Just in time to ring in this past holiday season, according to a story by Sarah Maddison of KHON2, Macadamia nuts, as well as canned meat products (Corned Beef & SPAM), liquor, expensive wine, steaks and frozen shrimp bags are items commonly reported stolen from Hawaii retailers, making it a unique challenge. So much that some stores have gone as far limiting stock on shelves for those items at locations where the problem is rampant, or putting them in lock boxes at the checkout.
What would really take the cake (punch line drum roll, please) is going to a local pawn shop and finding stacked next to the rack of used guitar and other high value items and collectibles, cases for sale of hocked SPAM, Corned Beef and Macadamia Nuts. lol
Nadine Kam, special to the Honolulu Star Advertiser – December 27, 2017
Reader and friend Ken W., a proud Makaha native, pointed out a recent story to me by Nadine Kam on how an ever-growing list of trendy eateries are popping up on Oahu’s West side. Particularly in the still-new Kapolei Commons and nearby Ka Makana Ali’i Shopping Center in the heart of Kapolei, Oahu’s “second city”.
New restaurants in Ka Makana Ali’i include Cheesecake Factory, their second location now on Oahu, and chicken specialist Bonchon. Also joining the list there is Mo’ena Cafe, a popular haute breakfast-centric eatery that started with its first location in Koko Marina Shopping Center in Hawaii Kai.
At Kapolei Commons there’s a new Eating House 1849 by Roy Yamaguchi, making that their third location, along with Waikiki and Koloa, Kauai. Also new there is DB Grill, a trendier, modern spin-off from Cafe Duck Butt in Kaka’ako.
In its own new stand-alone location in Kapolei is Kalapawai Cafe & Deli, a Kailua town institution.
Moving further west Oahu, the Four Seasons Oahu at Ko’olina recently opened La Hiki Kitchen, touted as “one of the most lavish buffet restaurants in the islands”. Also at that resort is the recent opening opening of Mina’s Fish House by Michael Mina. The restaurant is working on a program where guests can join their chefs on a personal fishing expedition right off the coast nearby, then bring their catch back to the restaurant where the chef will expertly prepare it for them.
Of course if those new and trendy hot spots don’t fancy you, consider the many more long established mom ‘n pops further down Oahu’s west coast, such as Ken’s old time favorite, Taco’s & More out in Waianae. Great little dive restaurant and bar that magically teleports you directly to an authentic cantina in the heart of Mexico, within just minutes away heading toward Pokai Bay.
Read more here (Star Advertiser online subscription required)
USA Today – January 4, 2018
Just when you thought Taco Bell combined every possible ingredient into every possible combination, stop thinking. Because they introduced another new ingredient: potato fries. Yup, Taco Bell is finally jumping on the bandwagon with their new Nacho Fries. It’s essentially French, oh wait, excuse me, Mexican Fries, coated with “Bold Mexican Seasoning”, served with, wait for it, Nacho Cheese dipping sauce. Who’d have thought? Price of admission just $1.
Of course we all know Taco Bell will eventually offer a version of these Nacho Fries smothered with their spicy meat sauce, stuffed in a taco or burrito, and what else? “The Works” Nacho Fries Nachos! Guaranz, das’ automatic.
Huffington Post – December 29, 2017
In honor of the legalization of recreational use of marijuana in California that went into effect January 1, 2018, in collaboration with old school rapper Snoop Dogg, Jack in the Box will launch the “Merry Munchie Meal”. Ready to satisfy every stoner’s raging, non-discriminating appetite, the deep fried bong fest includes chicken strips, 2 tacos, 5 churros, french fries, onion rings and a small drink, all for a toke-friendly $4.20. How clever. It will be available at three California Jack in the Box locations from January 18 to 25, 2018.
Not that this is anything new, as JITB already has their late night happy hour “Munchie Meals“, which is pretty much the same “hot mess”, albeit a bit higher than the pot head friendly $4.20 price.
Associated Press (c/o Business Insider) – January 3, 2018
Russo-Baltique vodka – $1.3 million
Police in Copenhagen, Denmark are investigating the theft of a bottle of Russo-Baltique vodka, valued as the world’s most expensive at $1.3 million, due in part to the bottle itself, which is made of 3 kilograms (6.6 lbs.) of gold, along with equivalent amounts of silver and a diamond-encrusted cap. According to the owner of Cafe 33 where it was stolen from, the bottle was uninsured and on loan from a Russian businessman.
It’s not known whether Robert Meueller was in on the investigation. Hopefully the alleged thief will at least do it justice by taking that bottle to the Louvre Abu Dhabi and make a heavy-handed toast to Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi, the most expensive painting in the world, recently purchased by a Saudi Prince for $450,312,500.
Leonardo da Vinci’s Salvator Mundi – $450.3 million
New at Jamba Juice Hawaii: fat-burning Pomegranate, the superfood!
Press release c/o Food Gurus Hawaii – January 3, 2018
Honolulu, Hawaii – Jamba Juice Hawaii introduces a new, seasonal line of healthful goodies featuring Pomegranate, a superfood, as well as a fat-burning boost, to help get the new year off on the right track.
Powered by pomegranate, the Hawaii-EXCLUSIVE Superfood Smoothie, Pomegranate Primo Bowl and PomBerry Immunity Shot offer the vitamin-rich, and antioxidant benefits of pomegranate with even more naturally deliciously nutritious ingredients, but no added sugar. Pomegranate has numerous health benefits, and is truly a good-for-you, feel-good superfood.
The beautiful, natural color of the smoothies, bowls and shots are a clear sign of their healthfulness, as Jamba never adds sugar, preservatives, artificial colors, or artificial flavors to the wholesome choices it offers.
What has been added to the PomBerry Immunity Shot, is Nutrivie Immune, a proprietary blend of naturally occurring, bioactive compounds from food nutrients. At its core, “the immune boost supports white blood cells that fight bacteria,” said Debra Kashiwabara, Hawaii-born president of first NUTRIENTS Company, Inc., in California. In addition, anthocyanins, or antioxidants from fruits such as blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and pomegranate, support the upper respiratory system, she said.
The fat-burning “Burn It” Boost will help ease off those extra holiday pounds, and it can be added to any smoothie or bowl. A workout buddy, “Burn It” will help boost the metabolism, and help burn fat and calories.
New, limited-time superfoods for Super Powers
Superfood Smoothie: soymilk, pomegranate juice, nonfat frozen yogurt; strawberries; blueberries, and chia seeds. Available in small, medium and large sizes.
Pomegranate Primo Bowl: soymilk; pomegranate juice; nonfat Greek yogurt; strawberries; blueberries and bananas, with toppings including granola; fresh banana; almonds; blueberries and a drizzle of honey.
PomBerry Immunity Shot: pomegranate juice, strawberries, and Nutrivie Immune, a proprietary immune supplement made from natural ingredients.
The fruit-encased seeds in pomegranates are called arils.
There are said to be 613 arils in each pomegranate, though the count can vary widely.
Pomegranate fruit has been used for thousands of years as a medicine.
Pomegranate juice contains more than 100 beneficial phytonutrients.
Pomegranates have deep symbolism in many cultures around the world, including prosperity and abundance.