First Look: Pac-Store Hawai‘i, a Pac-Man-Themed Restaurant at Bread & Butter
This Pac-Man pop-up restaurant will transport you back in time to the 1980s.
Neon ghosts decorate the window of bread & Butter.
Photos: Diane Lee
When I first discovered a Pac-Man-inspired menu would be available for a limited time at Bread & Butter, the little kid inside me screamed with joy. Pac-Man brought back nostalgic memories of small-kid time.
As teens, my brother and I spent our hard-earned quarters collecting Marvel trading cards and playing classic video games. Before the age of ICQ, AOL, Xanga and MySpace, we passed the time at a tiny arcade shop on Liliha Street. One of our favorite games: Pac-Man.
Pac-man signs decorate the walls of Pac-Store Hawai‘i.
Hale ‘Aina Award winner Bread & Butter partnered with Bandi Namco Entertainment, the creators of Pac-Man, to bring the pop-up restaurant—dubbed Pac-Store Hawai‘i—to the Kapi‘olani Boulevard restaurant now through May 31. The storefront is decorated with neon signs of Pac-Man’s enemies Terry, Rocky, Kelly and Harry. When you step inside, a big, yellow pie-shaped Pac-Man statue greets you with a smile. (Hint: You might want to bring that selfie stick.)
Hide Sakurai, owner of Bread & Butter, collaborated with Bandi Namco Entertainment to bring the pop-up restaurant to Honolulu. “They told us they had a pop-up store in Harajuku [in Japan],” Sakurai says. “They loved to bring the concept [Pac-Store] to Hawai‘i.” Sakurai says this will be the first and only Pac-Store to open in Hawai‘i—and just in time for Pac-Man’s 38th anniversary on May 22.
If you’re a gamer, this Pac-Man-inspired menu will bring back sentimental memories of teenage years. Sakurai recalls playing the game as an elementary school kid at coffee shops in Japan. “This is an old-school game—that’s how I remember Pac-Man,” Sakurai says.
Even if you’re not a gamer, you might still enjoy chomping on food items shaped like the iconic video game characters.
The special menu items featuring Pac-Man.
My brother and I visited during the media preview just hours before the grand opening on March 20. We tasted the Pac-Man pepperoni pizza ($13.95), a Pac-Man pie eating a slice of pizza (props to the chef for cutting the pepperoni pieces to resemble the shape of Pac-Man) and a miniature version of the light and fluffy Pac-Man cheesecake ($13.95).
A miniature version of the Pac-Man cheesecake.
The dishes are Instagrammable: Pac-Man beef curry ($12.95), Pac-Man mac 'n' cheese ($9.95) and Pac-Man garlic shrimp ($16.95)—all shaped as—you guessed it—Pac-Man.
The Pac-Man beef curry ($12.95).
The Pac-Man mac 'n' cheese ($9.95).
Pac-Man garlic shrimp ($16.95). Instead of pellets, Pac-Man is chomping on garlic shrimp.
Boo! The ghost loco-moco ($16.95).
It might be worth making a trip to Bread & Butter to try the new menu between now and May 31. You’ll need to be patient, though; Pac-Man food items might take longer to prepare. Limited Bread & Butter items from the regular menu will also be available.
There are $5 frozen drinks named after Team Ghost: Terry’s Blue Hawai‘i Coconut, Rocky’s Blueberry, Kelly’s Strawberry and Harry’s Maccha. If you prefer a hot drink, Bread & Butter will also be serving a Pac-Store Caffé Latte ($5) featuring one of three different Pac-Store latte art designs.
If you’re a Pac-Man fan, there’s an entire shelf dedicated to Pac-Man products, including a few Hawai‘i exclusive items: Aloha Pac-Store neon black tote ($15 for small, $22 for medium), a neon cap featuring a trio of Pac-Man characters dancing hula ($32), a T-shirt of a surfing Pac-Man ($30) and a silver Pac-Man pendant ($50).
HAWAI‘I EXCLUSIVE TOTE BAGS AVAILABLE AT BREAD & BUTTER.
A special token that allows you to play the Pac-Man game.
With each Pac-Man-themed dish or drink you purchase, you’ll receive a special Namco token to play the classic arcade game in the restaurant. We played the game trying to gobble up every small dot, colorful fruit and flashing blue ghost. Let’s just say our maze-maneuvering skills are a little rusty.
If you’re feeling brave, post your score on social media with the hashtag #pacstorehawaii. The highest weekly score will receive Pac-Store goodies. Good luck!
Bread & Butter, 1584 Kapi‘olani Blvd., Suite 110, garage entrance behind building on Kona Street (free validated parking), (808) 949-3430, alohabreadbutter.com