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Taste of the tropics comes to Lodi

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Posted: Tuesday, September 11, 2012 1:00 pm | Updated: 1:22 pm, Tue Sep 11, 2012.

Aloha Lodi! Welcome to the tropical tastes of the Hawaiian Islands.

OK, at least for those who visit the Aloha Diner concession at this year’s Grape Festival.

Lodi native Jim Pearce and his wife Debra will be offering new and fresh-made cuisine at an event they consider a favorite family tradition.

“We are so happy to be here. Jim grew up in Lodi and has always attended the Grape Festival, and  when we married I starting attending with him,” Debra Pearce said. “We are excited be offering authentic Hawaiian cuisine created from recipes passed on to us by friends. Everything is fresh all the way down to our sauces.”

Aloha Diner will present a variety of Hawaiian choices including their number one seller, Hawaiian Garlic Shrimp, touted to be as good as that made on the North Shores of Oahu, Hawaii. Also available will be Kalua pork (Hawaiian Style pulled pork), Aloha chicken and Maui Onion Fries.

The Aloha Diner will also share  a variety of Hawaiian tropical treats including the Malasadas, a specialty not found in Hawaiian restaurants in California, according to Debra.

“Malasadas are traditional Hawaiian deep fried pastries rolled in sugar,” Debra Pearce said. “And we have gone further and added a choice of fillings. We also take and slice the Malasadas and add them to our  pork sliders, creating the Malasada sliders.”

Other featured treats will include  hula pop, a Hawaiian-style popcorn, and Pulu Kanake, a Hawaiian-style fluffy spun sugar.

Traditional fair favorites will also be available in abundance. You can feast on sausage from Lockeford sausage and Alpine Meat hot dogs, sausage and hot links at the booth hosted by this year’s California Grapettes - Girls Fastpitch Softball teams. And don’t forget the fried cheese curds, corn on the cob, fries and a drink.

For those who prefer to snack you can always sample kettle Korn from Sierra Kettle Corn, Lemonade from Clint’s Lemonade or maybe even a slice of pizza from Pizza by the slice.

And for your sweet tooth, don’t forget to stop op at the Chocolate Factory for everything chocolate, or indulge in Java J’s specialty hot and cold specialty coffees and fruit smoothies, or sample some Polynesian shaved ice.

No matter your craving, be it for traditional fair cuisine or something new and fresh, you will find it at this year’s Grape Festival. Oh, and don’t forget the funnel cake. It is always a fair must.

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