DESSERTS DRESSED IN PINK

Honolulu has seen a surge in dessert shops over the past twelve months or so. While we’ve written about a few of them, more-and-more keep opening seemingly every week! One of the most recent additoins to our sweet treat options is Malu Honolulu, which quietly started its soft opening a couple of weeks ago.

Malu Honolulu
The interior of Malu is very, very pink

Located just across the parking lot from Sikdorak and Sushi ii off Ke’eaumoku Street, Malu Honolulu is a small shop that seats about twelve. They also offer their treat to-go. If you decide to eat in, be prepared for an onslaught of pink. Pink walls, pink logo, pink chairs, pink employee uniforms, pink flowers… a whole lot of pink.

Apart from its pink aesthetic, Malu Honolulu also stands out from other shops with its offering of kimbap (Korean style sushi rolls). While we didn’t try any on our visit since had just come from dinner, the kimbap would provide a savory option to those who were in the mood for something other than dessert.

JAPANESE-INSPIRED TREATS

Desserts at Malu Honolulu
Left to right: Green tea cream dorayaki, taiyaki cup soft serve, Rare cheesecake crepe cake

Although kimbap is Korean-influenced, the sweet side of the menu at Malu Honolulu is inspired by elements of Japanese desserts. The taiyaki cone and dorayaki cone in particular are more modern takes on classic Japanese sweets.

Dorayaki at Malu Honolulu
Dorayaki - Japanese style cream sandwich with green tea cream

Easy to mistake for an ice cream sandwich, this little treat has some light and airy matcha cream. The cream has a slight bitterness to it that matcha fans will appreciate. The dorayaki (Japanese pancake) are a little more sweetness to them to balance out the matcha.

Rare cheesecake crepe cake with a citrus filling

It’s not often that dessert stares back at you, but Malu’s rare cheesecake crepe cake does with two little googly eyes. The “rare” part of the name means that this is a no-bake cheesecake. The center is filled with a very tart citrus filling. The flavors were decent here, but I think some sort of textural contrast would enhance the cake.

Malu Honolulu
Getting that swirl of soft serve into the cup

Seems like Honolulu is going through a soft-serve craze and Malu Honolulu is adding their take to the mix. They intend to have a rotating cast of flavors and for our visit they were serving strawberry (matches the decor) and vanilla. We decided to get a twist of both for our taiyaki cup.

Taiyaki cup soft serve at Malu Honolulu
Taiyaki cup soft serve - Strawberry vanilla swirl, strawberry sauce, mini marshmallows, chocolate filled taiyaki

The most “insta-grammable” item on Malu Honolulu’s menu, the taiyaki cup soft serve is sure to be appearing on your feed several times as the shop ramps up to grand opening. My palate has always favored desserts that are mildy sweet with a tart or refreshing flavor, and this fits that bill. The taiyaki cone itself is filled with chocolate which I thought was a nice addition. The only thing lacking was the taiyaki itself, which was a bit spongier and soggy than I would have preferred.

IN SUMMARY...

I’ve always felt that Honolulu was sorely lacking in dessert-centric shops, so the recent explosion of options is a welcomed change. Although there we a few things that I think can be improved, Malu Honolulu is a viable option for hungry patrons to satisy their sweet tooth. I’d be curious to see what other flavors they have for the soft serve in the future.

Malu Honolulu
661 Keeaumoku Street
Honolulu, HI 96814
Ph: (808) 600-7104
www.maluhonolulu.com