For those who snack in industrial Southeast Portland, your hero has returned on its shining, imported horse.
International goods store Cargo has dedicated two of its store shelves to carry the nonperishable goods of Fulamingo, a curated Japanese grocery store. Fulamingo announced the good news on its social media account yesterday.
The question on everyone’s minds: Does this mean a Giraffe Goods-esque to-go market is on the horizon?
Giraffe Goods was a tidy little deli inside Cargo that sold snacks and lunches to go. Unfortunately, just as the market was beginning to garner it the praise it deserved, the pandemic shut down Cargo tight. The little deli had to shutter and take its Oyatsupan milk bread egg sandwiches with it.
One of the Giraffe Goods co-owners, Kana Hirohara, opened a new version of the business in North Portland’s Gotham Building later that fall. Fulamingo offered much of what you could get at Giraffe. The only problems: You had to remember to order it, and there wasn’t an option to window shop.
From the Instagram post, we can see that Fulamingo is stocking Kewpie Mayo (superior to all other mayo in every way), Wide Ramen Snack, Yuzu seltzers, Genki Calamasi carbonated citrus drinks and a wide variety of Pocky, among other items.
It’s true that you can find most of these products at the larger Asian supermarkets located farther out, like Uwajimaya or Fubonn Shopping Center, but the convenience and curation of Hirohara’s goods has gathered a passionate following, and if you haven’t been to the site... a cute illustrated flamingo jumps out while you’re shopping. It’s pretty nice.
Hirohara says that, while she was looking at new locations a month or so ago, the loans necessary for Fulamingo to make the brick and mortar move were too intimidating. “I couldn’t have any bad months, if I did that,” she told WW. She decided to streamline Fulamingo, getting rid of prepared foods and only offering non-perishable grocery items, until next year when she’ll reevaluate and see if a deli is more feasible.
EAT: Fulamingo shelf inside Cargo, 81 SE Yamhill St., fulamingo.com. 11 am-5 pm Wednesday-Sunday.