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Foodie Fare

Customized Catering & Cuisine

Story By Christina O'Connor Photos By Leah Friel
May 20 - 26, 2012

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Fukuya Delicatessen & Catering has been a local favorite for more than 70 years. Serving up local-style Japanese cuisine, Fukuya offers top-notch catering, as well as a vast array of options for lunch at the restaurant.

“We have a walk-in area where people can come and you can make your own lunch,” owner and manager Arrison Iwahiro says. “We have about 40 or so items out there. We’ve got everything from various types of chicken, tempuras, different kinds of fish and vegetables.”

Items include Mochiko Chicken ($2), Tofu Burger (95 cents), Spam Musubi ($1.65), Somen ($4.25) and Teri Meatballs (60 cents).

Iwahiro says that some of the most popular deli items include Miso Butterfish ($3 and up), Shoyu Pork ($2) and Chow Funn ($1.60).

From these options, customers can create their own Bento for a tasty, convenient lunch. With this wide range of choices, choosing which ones to include in your Bento may be a little difficult. Luckily, Fukuya provides Bento suggestions with some of its favorite pairings. One suggested Bento set includes Plain Musubi, Salad, Namasu, Noodles, Shoyu Chicken and Beef Teriyaki for $7.45. Another possible Bento set includes Plain Musubi, Namasu, Noodles, Beef Teriyaki, Shrimp Tempura and Croquette for $7.25.

Fukuya’s sushi also is a customer favorite at the deli. Sushi offerings include Egg Maki Sushi ($5) and Veggie Sushi ($4.75). Fukuya also has a selection of specialty rolls, including Beef Teriyaki Roll ($4.75), which features beef teriyaki, furikake and a slice of Spam.

Fukuya also offers various specials depending on what ingredients are available, and the restaurant’s creative chefs are frequently cooking up new treats. As a result, the deli is an exciting place to visit — and what you find here often changes from one day to the next, offering customers a varied set of favorites such as Furikake Chicken ($1.80) and Kalua Pig ($1.85).

“We always try to make items as we go along,” Iwahiro says. “If a certain type of fish is coming in, for example, then maybe we will try to create something with that.”

And for today, the chefs have cooked up something special: Seafood Baked Mahi Mahi ($3). The dish features fresh mahi mahi accented with a seafood topping. Stop in today for the deal.

Throughout the years, Fukuya also has remained a favorite for catering services. It caters a range of special events, including weddings, funerals, birthday parties, graduations, office parties and Christmas parties. Suggested catering menus include Assorted Sushi, Chicken Salad, Gobo Kimpira, Nori Chicken, Fried Noodles, Teri Meatballs and Canton Shrimp for $15.50 per person. Another menu includes Assorted Sushi, Potato/Mac Salad, Namasu, Fried Noodles, Baked Ham, Beef Teriyaki, Shoyu Chicken and Shrimp Canton for $17.25 per person.

And if none of these suggested menus suit your tastes, you are welcome to request menu additions or even create your own menu.

“It is whatever you want,” Iwahiro says. “We will custom it for whatever you want.”

On the Side

Fukuya Delicatessen & Catering is a family-run business that was started in 1939 by Jihei and Tsuya Takayama. Today, Fukuya is run by the founders’ great-grandson, Arrison Iwahiro, who spent much of his youth learning the trade from his parents and grandparents.

“I just hung around (the restaurant) when my grandparents were running the place,” he says. “And then when my parents were doing it, I was around more often.

“It was just a two-person operation when (my great-grandparents) started,” Iwahiro says. “At first it was basically just to serve the nearby workers, but then as it went on, the restaurant got a little busier, and we went into catering.”

Fukuya began its catering operations by mainly providing food to wedding parties, expanding over time to include a wide range of events. Just as it has beefed up its catering repertoire over the years, the menu has expanded as well.

“We realized that we do have to move with the times, so we have added more modern-day type of things as well,” Iwahiro says. He explains that some of these more modern-style dishes include Garlic Chicken ($2.20), Mochiko Chicken ($2) and Ahi Burgers ($1.90).

But longtime regulars have no need to worry — the longtime favorite dishes are still around, too.

“Some of the things have changed a little, but in general, we try to keep it kind of that more old-fashioned style,” says Iwahiro.

Fukuya Deli and Catering

  • Where
    • 2710 South King Street
    • Honolulu, HI 96826
  • Call
    • (808) 946-2073
  • Hours
    • 6 a.m. – 2 p.m.
    • Wednesday – Sunday
  • Website