Gâteau au Chocolat specialty café Pono opens in Hioki, Kagoshima

PUBLISHED Jun 2, 2022

Chcolat Sandwich

It has been almost three months since Pono, a café specializing in Gâteau au Chocolat, opened in Ijuin-cho, Hioki City, Kagoshima Prefecture.

Kaori Hoshihara, a Chocolatier, runs the café. She used to provide Gâteau au Chocolat at Otonari, a shared kitchen café in Shimoishiki, until her husband opened a multipurpose space Fab Lab in Ijuin. On March 12, she opened the café inside the space.

The signature product is a “rich” Gâteau au Chocolat made with couverture chocolate, Kagoshima eggs, and fresh cream (480 yen for a cup, 1,680 yen for a whole). A hojicha-flavored item is also available. The most popular is Chcolat Sandwich, the Gâteau au Chocolat sandwiched between biscuits and sprinkled with coarse salt from the prefecture (from 300 yen). She says, “The sweet and salty flavor is the reason for its popularity.”

The café also offers coffee, latte, juice, and other beverages. The Cake Plate (600 yen with drink), a cup-shaped Gâteau au Chocolat with vanilla ice cream, is available as an in-house menu item.

The café is equipped with two tables for four people, four tables for two people, and sofas with a round table. In addition to Pono, the Fab Lab also houses a photo studio, a shared kitchen, a coworking space, and a coin-operated laundry, with an overall facility area of 198 square meters.

Opening hours of Pono: 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m. Holidays will be announced on social media pages. Closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays in June.

  • Exterior view of multipurpose space Fab Lab

  • Café area of Pono

  • Gâteau au Chocolat from Pono

  • Gâteau au Chocolat from Pono (in a box)