Panya offers new flavors of gau

December 30th, 2011

Nadine Kam photo

Panya’s New Year gau, clockwise from top, coconut creme, traditional brown sugar, red bean, and water chestnut. All four flavors will be available throughout January, beginning Sunday.

Panya is taking orders for New Year’s gau to be available beginning Jan. 1.

Beyond the basic Chinese brown sugar and mochiko pudding, Panya is offering gau with red beans, as well as a light, opaque water chestnut version and white, coconut creme-flavored version.

I had an impromptu tasting when I passed by the Ala Moana Center shop yesterday and saw Melissa Chang and Russ Sumida with a stack of gau in front of them, even though Russell doesn’t care to try “scary” foods.

On some level, I can understand that, because I have a lot of friends with food phobias, including people who won’t eat onions and garlic, the basis of most cooking! Then there are the Chinese who don’t eat Japanese food, and Japanese who don’t eat Chinese food, and I just thought he was one of those Japanese, who, like another of my Japanese friends, feels the presence of a salt-preserved duck yolk in the center of moon cakes is gross.

Even though all the Chinese broads, including Panya’s Alice Yeung, tried to convince Russ that gau is similar to mochi, he said he doesn’t even eat that.

Oh well, more for me, right? As much as I like traditional gau, I thought the flavored versions were good. The coconut was the biggest surprise, because you can go so wrong with coconut. Sometimes the oil in it can taste rancid, but this tasted nice and clean. I also liked the lightness of the water chestnut, but with the texture of kanten, it didn’t go over as well with people at the office who were graving the texture of traditional gau.

Panya’s gau comes in two sizes, a 4-inch diameter small and 7-inch diameter large.

Prices for the small servings are $6 each for brown sugar gau and water chestnut gau, and $6.50 each for coconut creme and red bean. The respective prices for the large servings are $16 an $18.

Also available for the Chinese New Year will be gourmet jai featuring mushrooms, chestnuts, gingko nuts, black fungus, Chinese cabbage, seaweed, baby corn, bean curd and more, at $22 and $45 for pick-up on Jan. 21, 22 and 23.

Call 946-6388 or 597-8880. Visit for more information.

One Response to “Panya offers new flavors of gau”

  1. MC96816:

    Gau scary? Russ, brah … you need to grow a pair. (A pair of ***onions***!!!)

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