Shokudo's parent company moves to California, begins expansion
SHOKUDO Japanese Restaurant & Bar, the eatery and watering hole at 1585 Kapiolani Blvd. whose name means dining room in Japanese, now has a sister restaurant in Beverly Hills, Calif.
"We just opened Tokyo Table Dec. 28," Marketing Manager Yuki Yokoyama said.
Shokudo Japanese is operated by Dream Dining Honolulu LLC, while Tokyo Table is run by Dream Dining California LLC. The parent company, Delaware-registered Dream Dining Corp., has a vision for 50 restaurants nationwide within 10 years. Yokoyama says the company headquarters has moved to California from Hawaii to facilitate more expansion in that state and then others, but first things first.
The new Tokyo Table Restaurant & Bar on La Cienaga Blvd. has a different name because the company wasn't able to register Shokudo in California, Yokoyama said.
However, it has the same look as Shokudo and nearly the same menu -- though with some differences, according to each restaurant's Web site.
Some of the differences are surprising, perhaps because of your columnist's expectation that everything on the Hawaii menu would be more expensive than on the California menu. Rather, some dishes are costlier in California than here.
Being in Beverly Hills, "it's not really appropriate to lower our price," Yokoyama said.
Unagi rice, garlic shrimp and rice and bi bim bap cost more at the Beverly Hills restaurant, for instance.
In Hawaii, the small portion of salt-flavored chanko nabe is $9.75, while it is $9.95 in California. However, the large size is a dollar more expensive in Hawaii than the $18.95 California price.
Some of the menu differences are not so eyebrow-raising, because folks' sensibilities are different between here and there.
The words "deep fried" before any food item don't keep many Hawaii folks away from placing an order, which is why cardiologists drive expensive cars. In Beverly Hills, however, the perception -- perhaps just your columnist's -- is that nobody orders anything described as deep fried.
At Tokyo Table, something called agedashi tofu is called deep-fried battered tofu on the Shokudo menu.
FM Auction day two
The allure of building an FM radio station in Kihei drew top bidding during the continuing Federal Communications Commission auction yesterday.
The future Valley Isle station was the top bid-getter in Round 4 Wednesday, and Rounds 5, 6 and 7 yesterday, but ended Round 8 in second place with the $463,000 bid by Maui-based Visionary Related Entertainment LLC. Bidding resumes with Round 9 today.
is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Call 529-4747, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached at: email@example.com