Ginza Kimuraya, Sconees…Pastries for Lunch!

Today’s lunch:

A bakery stop at Ginza Kimuraya en route to the post office. Making the stop was the RIGHT move indeed. I passed the bakery right after 11am when a ‘ding ding’ reminder when off in my head. Bakery sensor, I tell you. 11am is PRIME TIME for hot goods leaving the oven, making its way onto the display cases at Ginza. I made an instinctive U-turn, and viola! found myself waltzing into the bakery. Totally forgetting my resolution to stop eating so many sweet things. Some things were not meant to be.

One pastry I craved in particular was the Milk Brot. Think of a mini, slight softer and sweeter sister of a baguette. The Japanese interpretation. Then slice the sweet baby baguette right down the middle and pipe in a daring mix of whipped butter, condensed milk and sugar. The warm bread soaks up some of the buttery spread but leaves enough for a bit to ooze out with every bite. Imagine. Hot bread, sweet spread. It brings back memories of school day breakfasts of toast with butter and sugar. Only more refined. But just as decadent.

But to balance the sweet, I also picked up the Curry Donut. There is nothing more honest than a piece of fried bread, teasing you with its shiny brown glory. Even better is when the bread is stuffed with a beef and potato curry. This was a little more oily than usual, however the light flaky crunch and soft stretches of buttery dough and warm curry quickly pushed that thought aside. Hey, at least it wasn’t a chocolate donut :)

Well then I thought, ‘I’m already here. And everything is warm. So FRESH. It needs to be eaten. It must!!! So I did. The “special” good for the day was an orange croissant twist. The heavy brush of sugar syrup on top made it overly sweet and I thought the raisins didn’t quite fit in. Scratching my head, I plunged on with bite after bites, peeling apart the soft wispy layers, each one with the faintest hint of butter. Ay yah. This was a really filling lunch. Bakeries were invented to give human heart attacks. And we love them all the same.

I went to my mom’s office afterwards to help her out with emails and a few administrative thingamagiggers. I’m going back to school on Monday, which makes me sad and happy and mostly wistful. But these last few days – no more summer school, work or obligations. Just family time :) I took a walk along Kaimuki’s Waialae Ave in the later afternoon. Too much staring at the computer in a freezing cold office can drive you crazy. And I walked. And walked. Past the comic book stores, Cafe Laufer, C&C Pasta, Bozu, Kaimuki Choy Suey, Verbanos, poking my face in the windows of everyone, examining menus I already memorized from past walks. I like doing things like that. Then I passed Sconees.

And checked my watch (or phone, cause I don’t own a watch). Nearly 4pm! Magic time (again)! The whole bakery, aside from refrigerated goods like custard pies and lilikoi & guava bars, go half off soon before closing. The 15 minutes leading to 4pm is rather exciting with crowds of elderly couples, school kids and people on their way home pouring in to take advantage of the deal. People in Hawaii love deals. And love buying in bulk. That’s why we have 3 Costcos and 2 Sams Club on this tiny tiny island. My mom phoned right as I was passing by,
“where are you? I’m leaving now and can come pick you up”
“Sconees,…did you want anything? It’s all HALF-OFF!”
Silence.
“Didn’t we just eat?”
“Oh. Oh yeah.”
“Get something if you’d like, I’ll be there in 5 minutes.”
Hangs up.
Exactly five minutes, mom pulls up on the side.
“Oh, you got something – a scone?” She peers eagerly at the bag, attempting to see right through with her nonexistent x-ray vision. Mom loves to eat as much as I do, only she’s better at resisting the sirens of sweet baked goodness.

She looks slightly confused. I guess choosing cornbread in a place that specializes in scones is different…but it was the CORNER PIECE. And I don’t even know why I got it. I was so full! But it was so CHEAP! And so BROWN and PRETTY. My mom didn’t ask why I bought it, but I felt as if I needed an explanation. So I gave one. Or at least I made up one in my head…
“Oh, I don’t know…my hand. It just wandered there and pointed at the cornbread. And before I knew what happened, my wallet opened and out flew a dollar bill. Suddenly the bill disappeared and in place of it was a golden corner cut of cornbread. I, I really have no idea.” OK, I was happy. Really. That’s JUST how it happened.
A strange moment indeed. (Summer is frying my brain!)
I’ll leave you with happy thoughts that my $.64 corner piece was mighty delicious. Crusty around the edges, buttery and just so corny soft throughout. Imagine having it warm! With butter, of course.
And yes, I shared with my mom.

Ginza Kimuraya
Kahala Mall
4211 Waialae Avenue
Honolulu, HI 96816
(808) 735-9600

Sconees
1117 12th Ave.
Honolulu, HI 96816
(808) 734-4024

9 Comments
  • Robyn
    August 27, 2006

    Your mom sounds cool. :DThat milky baguette sounds sooo goood! I need to move to Hawaii so that I can have access to craploads of Japanese food without having to actually live in Japan.

  • Madam Chow
    August 27, 2006

    I just love your blog! My husband is from Hawaii, and I lived there for 13 years, and every year we look forward to going back home and eating our way through our visit! I’m going to make a list of your favorite places and take it with us on our upcoming trip.

  • Tokyo Rosa
    August 28, 2006

    Hmmm…My first lunch in Ginza was at Ginza Kimuraya. I’m glad to see they’ve branched out!

  • RON
    August 29, 2006

    that must have been one tasty square of corn bread, in preference to all the other pastries at 50% off.

  • anonymous
    August 31, 2006

    Bakeries are just the yummiest. The milky baguette…mmmm…gimmee some right now!!

  • Kathy YL Chan
    August 31, 2006

    Hey Robyn!You’ll be in France – oh the macarons you’ll feast on! Not to mention croissants, foie gras…man! But the occasionaly milky baguette is sooo good :)Hey Madam Chow!Thanks you! If you want, just let me know when you’re coming and I can help you make a list of good places to visit!Hey Tokyo Rosa!I heard the Hawaii location is the first one in the US – pretty appropriate considering the large Japanese (and Chinese) population here!Hey Ron!It’ was only $.64! And SO big! How could you not? LOL, that’s the Chinese in me – never turn down a good deal even if you’re already TOO FULL.Hey Pallavi!I would…if you flew over right now! :)

  • Chubbypanda
    September 2, 2006

    I have the same problem you do. I can never wander past an Asian bakery without going inside. Once I do, I always end up buying more bread than I could possibly eat. It’s a real dilemma. =b

  • sneaky ninja
    February 12, 2010

    OMG your blog is so funny! And you make everything sound so mouthwateringly good! I stumbled across your blog when I was looking up the hours for the Sconees bakery in Pearl City. I'm addicted to their scones-I practically grew up on them & I don't know anywhere else on the island who makes it better, but now after reading your blog I'm so gonna have to try their cornbread! I'm also glad to have come across your page because even though I was born & raised & currently live on the island of Oahu, I have never heard of that Ginza bakery before! I live practically on the other side of the island in Mililani, & I have to admit I probably make it out to Kahala mall like once a year, but I don't even recall seeing that bakery! Your descriptions of it make it sound so irresistable! Now I can't wait to try it. Yummm…

  • anonymous
    February 12, 2010

    This thing won't let me sign in grrr. . . sneaky ninja here. I'm so bummed. I went to look up Ginza Kimuraya in Kahala mall this morning after reading your blog last nite & now it seems I'll never get to try all those yummy treats you described because they're no longer there! Tear, sniff. . . Seriously! Stupid whole foods! They're too expensive anyway & they're mainland – not local based! Anyway I tried to see if Ginza Kimuraya maybe opened up elsewhere in Hawaii, but it doesn't seem like it. Do you know another Japanese bakery that sells that bread thing with the butter, sugar & condensed milk? My boyfriend & I used to eat these curry pasteries from Pelio(?) bakery in Market City Shopping Center, but I'm not even sure if they're there anymore. . .

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