Experience an Abundance of Worldly FlavorsCover Story Features
June 29, 2014
Story By: Alana Folen | Photos by: Anthony Consillio
Jet-setting across the globe is an experience many can only dream of. But for the devout food enthusiast, immersing the palate into a multicultural myriad of flavors coupled with signature island flair is possible each and every day at McCully Shopping Center. This 35,290-square-foot outdoor complex opened in August 1986, and quickly became a go-to spot for shopping and dining.
Located in Honolulu, McCully Shopping Center, owned by M Pocket Corporation, caters to all tastes and preferences. The center’s marketing director Terri Hansen-Shon says the colorful variety of restaurant fare is complementary to the clientele.
During the month of July, McCully Shopping Center presents A World of Cuisines, an annual event spotlighting the ethnic diversity of many of its restaurants, including CoCo Ichibanya Curry House, Fook Yuen Chinese Seafood, Hot Pot Heaven, Maui Kitchen, Neco Bar & Grill, Pho 777, Phuket Thai Restaurant, Regal Diner, Taco Bell/Pizza Hut, Yottekoya and Snow Factory.
“The participating establishments are staples here at McCully Shopping Center,” says Hansen-Shon. “The food is authentic, and many of the restaurants’ staff speak more than one language.
“Just minutes from Waikiki, McCully Shopping Center invites both locals and visitors to try something new, or go with the familiar, with a helping of delicious comfort food.”
In need of cool comfort on these sweltering hot summer days? Snow Factory brings down the heat with its refreshingly sweet creations, which assistant manager Kristal Vidad describes as “frozen cotton candy.” Snow Factory custom-makes its own creamy, dairy-based ice here in the Islands. “The flavors are infused into the ice blocks prior to freezing. Conceptually, our snow ice is Taiwanese-inspired, but we add local flair to it, and our shave ice machine produces a product that’s light and fine in texture.”
With a total of 36 flavors on the menu, Strawberry & Lychee, Green Tea & Taro and Li Hing Mui, Mango and Pineapple round out the top three most popular selections. Cookie Butter is the newest flavor and Strawberry & Banana is the summer special. Patrons can personalize their sweet treat with an assortment of complimentary toppings, such as Butterfinger, honey-roasted peanuts, Oreo, chocolate chip cookies, gummy bears, Fruit Loops and Nilla Wafers. For an additional 50 cents-$1.75, macadamia nuts, toffee bits, pound cake, bacon bits, cheesecake, brownies and marshmallows may be integrated into the mix.
Once your sweet tooth is satisfied, Pho 777 is where it’s at for authentic Vietnamese eats. Exceptional pho is a given, but the menu boasts a slew of other must-try items as well. Enter Finest Rice with House Special Combination ($10.95), which features a meat lover’s ideal pairing of pork chop, shredded pork and meatloaf topped with fried egg, accompanied by a small bowl of chicken broth. Priced at $11.65, Lemon Beef Salad is a healthy option, as romaine, tomato slices, lemon and cucumber are accentuated with slices of tender beef garnished with roasted peanuts, fried onion flakes and Chinese parsley. The salad is served with a house special dressing on the side. And for dessert, many will agree that Banana Tapioca ($2.75) is the right choice.
Then, as the clock strikes 11 a.m., excitement is in the air, as the lunch crowd makes its way to Fook Yuen Chinese Seafood for the restaurant’s daily lunch buffet, offered from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The all-you-can-eat buffet (priced at $11.95 per person Monday through Friday and $12.95 Saturday and Sunday) presents a spread of fried rice, white rice, chow mein, beef broccoli, oyster sauce chicken, roast duck, pigs feet, tofu corn soup, mapo tofu, Schezuan-style eggplant, Canton shrimp, fried chicken wings and almond float.
Warm up to something good, and pay a visit to Hot Pot Heaven to partake in an interactive dining experience, as patrons become their own chef at the tables. There is a plethora of broths to choose from, ranging from Hawaii Broth ($8.99) infused with locally grown pineapple, to Thai Broth ($8.99), a savory concoction of chicken broth spiced up with homemade pickled Chinese cabbage, lemongrass, ginger, lime leaves and Thai basil. Next, choose your desired items, plop them in the broth, let the pot boil and bon appetit.
“A World of Cuisines is always a fun month-long celebration for McCully Shopping Center,” Hansen-Shon says. “A lot of people come out to the shopping center to not only enjoy the restaurants and the specialty shops, but also for a chance to win a trip to somewhere in the world. This year, one winner will receive a complimentary round trip for two to Japan, consisting of a three-day, two-night package (breakfast included) with airfare provided by Korean Air. Transportation from Narita Airport to the hotel will be provided by JTB Japan. Entry forms and boxes are available at participating merchants, and forms are downloadable online at Mccullysc.com), as well as on Facebook and Twitter (@mccullysc).
“Be sure to also follow us (@mccullysc) on our social networks for additional prizes weekly,” she notes.
Next month, make it a point to take advantage of everything McCully Shopping Center has to offer, and explore a whole new world of cuisines. Your sophisticated palate (or soon-to-be) will be happy you did. For more information and additional contest rules, visit mccullysc.com.
McCully Shopping Center
1960 Kapiolani Blvd., Honolulu