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Café Kaila

Step Up to the Plate

November 19, 2017

Story By: Lynsey Beth Futa | Photos by: LAWRENCE TABUDLO

A CLOSER LOOK AT THIS WEEK’S HOUSE SPECIAL: BELGIAN WAFFLE ($20.95 WITH ALL THE FRUIT ADD-ONS)

It’s no secret that breakfast is a thing — it’s trending. And while there are endless hot spots to choose from to devour an early-morning meal or mid-day brunch, it’s hard to beat Café Kaila in Market City Shopping Center.

Unlike other establishments in the Kaimuki/Kapahulu complex that have come and go, Café Kaila is still kicking, hosting lines of hungry customers daily.

And after nine years of pouring delicious Lion Coffee into an insurmountable number of mugs, and dishing out countless plates of unique breakfast items, the eatery is better than ever.

Café Kaila — which is named after owner Chrissie Castillo’s middle name — underwent some renovations earlier this year, but that didn’t stop the food or the crowd.

“When Chrissie started this nine years ago, breakfast was still a thing, but it blew up into what it is now,” says marketing manager Wayne Kato. “A lot of different breakfast restaurants are popping up, so it’s stiff competition, but we try to maintain our high level of service that we have for ourselves — and try to focus on that.”

Dig into some of the café’s most popular options, such as Italian Omelet, Meatloaf Loco Moco and the delectably delicious Belgian Waffle — with all the fruit add-ons, of course.

The vegetarian Italian Omelet is packed with eggplant, zucchini and mushrooms sauteed with garlic and basil, and finished off with fresh marinara sauce and cheese. There’s also an off-menu Meatloaf Loco Moco ($15.95) with homemade meatloaf and gravy on top of rice, with two eggs.

“We use local eggs from Waimanalo, which we get fresh every day,” says Kato. “We also try to use organic when possible, and local when possible — especially the fruits, because we always want to get the ripest fruits.”

FINISHING TOUCHES

The entire plate is dusted with powdered sugar and served with a side of whipped cream and maple syrup.

YOU’LL NEED A KNIFE FOR THIS

This deep-pocketed waffle is the perfect size to split with everyone at your table, and yet irresistible and fluffy enough to make you reconsider sharing.

ALL THE FIXINGS

If you opt for all the fruit add-ons, you’ll receive fresh blueberries ($3) and strawberries ($3), caramelized apples ($2.50) and bananas ($2.50), all atop your Belgian waffle.

THE SEASON FOR GIVING

Café Kaila often partners with local nonprofits, dedicating dishes to support a greater cause. This month, the restaurant has teamed up with Hawaii Food Bank and will donate $2 from every Pumpkin Spice Waffle ($10.50) order to the organization.

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