Restaurant Insider with Anne Lee: Slappy CakesRestaurant Insider
January 8, 2023
Story By: Anne Lee | Photos by: ANNE LEE
ANNE LEE speaks with Slappy Cakes co-owner/ co-operator ALI RODEN
I love playing with my food. A brother-and-sister duo at Slappy Cakes own and operate this fun breakfast/brunch place located in the heart of Lahaina town on Maui.
I met up with Ali Isabelle, newly Ali Roden (and also a new mommy to 9-month-old daughter Paula), to make pancakes and talk about all the great things that make up Slappy Cakes.
And come hungry as the portions are not only delicious but also generous.
AL: Tell me more about Slappy Cakes.
AR: This is a family-friendly restaurant. Kids of any age, parties of any size, old and young at heart, and anyone that enjoys cooking — there’s something for everyone.
We have a full bar with spectacular bloody marys and mimosas. For those that don’t want to cook, we have a full menu of made-to-order from-scratch breakfast items — and our kitchen staff is led by our executive chef, Fatima.
AL: When did this location open and how did you come up with the concept?
AR: We opened this location in 2013. My brother, Adam Fuderer, opened the first location in Portland, Oregon. He and I loved interactive restaurants when we were younger, like fondue. In 2008, my brother realized that Portland’s dining scene was becoming a big brunch culture, and he wanted to do brunch but he wanted a unique dining concept, a do-it-yourself aspect to brunch.
That is how Slappy Cakes was born. I was actually a school teacher in Atlanta at the time, and quit my job to move to Portland first, and then to Maui to open this restaurant.
AL: What are some popular items on the menu?
AR: When you walk in at 5 a.m., you can smell the bananas caramelizing that go into our famous Banana Bread French Toast ($19) made with local mac nuts. These are made from scratch every day, and served with bacon and scrambled eggs.
We have a few twists on our local favorites such as the Slappy Moco ($21) that uses Maui beef patty and local brown gravy with two eggs. It’s a popular fun dish.
We also have lighter options. Our Dragon Fruit Chia Bowl ($12) is really beautifully made with a combination of local fruit from upcountry Maui: strawberry, blueberry, strawberry papaya, coconut and dragon fruit. It’s vibrant and it tastes as good as it looks.
We also have our Candied Bacon ($11). It’s definitely a favorite, and it’s topped with mac nuts and brown sugar.
The Choose A Batter ($10) make-your-own pancakes feature a handful of flavor options: a seasonal batter, which we change about five times a year, as well as chocolate, vegan and the regular pancake batter. All the toppings are a la carte and start at $2 per fixing.
And, of course, your favorite: the House Mary ($13). For this bloody mary, you can add bacon or upgrade to Ocean Vodka for an upcharge.
AL: You guys are open 365 days a year. Why is that?
AR: We have so many families that are visiting. Holidays are extra busy, and they don’t have a place to eat for Christmas morning.
If you want to avoid the line, either come super early or later.
AL: Anything else you want to share?
AR: We also have the franchise licensing. Our big goal is to start opening Slappy Cakes on the mainland. We get questions about franchising from people visiting all over the world.
If you’re interested in a franchising opportunity, you can email email@example.com.