FUUD: Downtown eats

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For the past five weeks, I’ve been working downtown for HAWAI’I Magazine.

It was a nice break from my full-time job at Kapi’olani Community College, where most of us who work there eat at the cafeteria (run by our award-winning culinary arts program) or Subway. Unless you don’t mind walking to Pioneer Saloon or Fort Ruger Market, there isn’t much variety in and around campus.

So when I took this temporary gig in downtown — I’m talking in the Cades Schutte building at 1000 Bishop St., right in the middle of all the action — I was looking forward to my lunch options.

You can get just about anything you crave — and I did — in downtown, from gourmet sandwiches to lamb gyros to plate lunches.

Here are some of my favorite spots to eat in downtown:

Grand Cafe & Bakery

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You can't go wrong with anything on the menu at Grand Cafe & Bakery in Chinatown. It was first founded in 1923 and, though the cafe has changed since it re-opened on Pauahi Street several years ago, it maintains that throwback feel — in its dining area and food offerings.

Grand Cafe & Bakery
31 N. Pauahi St.


Got a favorite downtown spot to share? Dish here!


To read all of Cat’s blogs, visit www.nonstophonolulu.com/thedailydish. Follow Cat on Twitter @thedailydish or send her an e-mail at cat@nonstophonolulu.com.

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La taqueria de Ramiro is definitely worth the walk to fort street mall from my office. A carnitas super taco makes my week! If I'm super hungry because of late meetings I usually get korean bbq from My BBQ in ASB. And if I'm craving plate lunch I go to Umeke and get ginger beef stew or vegetarian chili. For something simple, Carrot Patch in Topa never disappoints. Sandwiches and salads just like you'd make at home for super cheap. They also have breakfast sandwiches in the morning called WikiWikis!

For more upscale lunches or celebrations we make the trek to Du Vin or Downtowne at the HiSAM. Both are crazy delicious. Aaahhhh the perks that come with working downtown and fighting traffic.


Kafe Europa for their roasted eggplant and baklava. I'm heartbroken that Bombay Curry in a Hurry (formerly on Alakea) is gone though. They were the best Indian food in town...


Oh yeah, fuud prom again. Lots more places to eat in town than what you've captured. Some more high end, some cheaper, some sit down, some take out, but all good eating places.

Funny you posted this blog. I was crossing Hotel Street at Fort Street mall last week when I spied Rada's Piroski. Haven't had their Piroski since they moved from up the mall a couple of years ago or so. Unfortunately they didn't make my favorite: Beef, Cheese, Cabbage Piroski that afternoon. I didn't check to see if they still had Fried Squid which was another winner.


Aaaiiiyyyaaahhh! Fuud Pix! Tenks! I guess your next trek will be to China Town! Lots of fuud there!

nonstopmari moderator

loved this downtown mini-food tour. i hardly get down there for lunch bc of the parking situation, so i feasted visually.


it's been an overwhelming week of food reportage on NSHNL. the irony. i've been sipping soup and eating oatmeal for the last few days, cause i got a loose wisdom tooth back there and it likes to send messages around that nerve, making all the stops along the way. just about the time i'd like to bite into something you, Melissa, or Mari are showing me, i think of Tom Hanks, knocking out his bad tooth with the blade of an ice skate, in 'Castaway',


Thanks for the review. Next time I go to our Bishop St. office, I have these choices, except Plaza Club that is :)


Hello Cat!
Fuud pics Friday!
I don't get to eat in downtown cause I work in Pearl City. Everything looks so ono!
Have a Great weekend Cat!


@808marv I remember going to the place up the mall when the Russian lady, who worked by herself, ran the place. Then a younger Filipino lady ran it, then the someone else, and now a Filipino family runs that outlet.

I'd still drop once in a whil to pick up a Piroski the next time I'm in that part of town.


@harrycovair When I first tried Rada's years ago as a kid it was so great to get that Piroski piping hot right out of the fryer. I liked the chicken, mushroom & cheese one. Loved the fried squid too. But when I went there again as an adult sometime in the 90s I found an old lady serving up pre-made lukewarm piroskis from a basket with flies buzzing around it. Granted it basically still had the same taste but it's not the same when it's cooled down. Haven't been back since, maybe things are different now?