Rosie's Cantina to close after nearly 30 years

Jackie Kawahakui
Jackie Kawahakui
Brett Fish
Brett Fish
Silkie Kawahakui
Silkie Kawahakui

By Zahid Arab - bio | email

HALEIWA (KHNL) - A popular, longtime restaurant is ready to say "adios" for good. Rosie's Cantina will close Sunday after nearly 28-years. The North Shore restaurant shuts down after losing its lease and an unsuccessful search for a new location.

Hidden in Haleiwa. Right by the highway, is the meeting place. It just happens to serve Mexican food.

"Rice and refried beans or rice and black beans on the side?," said server Jackie Kawahakui.

The community, along with its appetites, have been coming here for nearly 30-years, but now Rosie's Cantina will close.

"I think it's sad," said customer Brett Fish.

"It's a heritage and when something dies you hate to see that happen," said diner Greg Lee.

"It's juicy and tender," said Silkie Kawahakui.

Silkie loves the taste of the ahi tacos.

"It's a bummer. It's more than a restaurant, it's like a regular family place," said Silkie Kawahakui.

"It's usually your aunty or uncle waiting on you," said Jackie Kawahakui.

30 employees will lose their jobs. some will file for unemployment or seek work elsewhere. Jackie's been at Rosie's since 1997.

"It's just a shame, we were good for the first 26 years with the first landlord, this new guy takes over, none of us have a job left," said Jackie Kawahakui.

Rosies' closure follows Haleiwa Super Market's around the corner. It boarded up it's building in February after more than a hundred years in business. It's a sight that's unsettling on the North Shore.

"It looks like Tijuana instead of Santa Barbara. It's unfortunate, you put a lot of time and work really hard and give good service and we weren't rewarded for it. But I'm taking away some really good memories," said Jackie Kawahakui.

They grew up together, but now for Rosie's it's just a few last helpings in Haleiwa. The property's owner plans to remodel and then re-open the space as a new Mexican and seafood market in December.