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Posts Tagged ‘food’

We read online that Mama’s Fish House was one of the best restaurants on the island of Maui. We’ve visited Maui a number of times now, but had yet to check this place out, mostly due to the cost. On our latest trip we were heading home along the Hana Highway and trying to decide on where to go for dinner. We didn’t have a reservation, but since it wasn’t quite 5pm we figured it might not be too busy yet. So we figured we would check it out while we were in the area. Since we didn’t have a reservation they didn’t have a spot in the main dining area (with the amazing ocean-view), but they did have a spot in the bar area which was fine with us.

The service was amazing! The valet staff entered our name into a computer, and by the time we got to the waitress station they were expecting us and had our table ready. Our waitress was fantastic, attentive, and friendly. Never let our water glass get empty.

There is an amazing beach right out front of the restaurant… what a view:
Beach at Mama's Fish House

We went over the drink menu, but after the long drive decided to stick with some pop. Shauna went with the iced tea, and Dan asked for a Root Beer. (Maui travel tip for pop drinkers… always order the root beer as many restaurants stock a brand of local Maui made root beer that is fantastic).The menu looked amazing! We had looked at the menu online so already knew what we wanted for an entree, but we decided to try the Papa’s Sashimi Trio Appetizer first – which consisted of Ono with calamansi citrus and Molokai pink sea salt, Ahi with ponzu, red sisho, and kukui nut salt, and Onaga with charred pineapple, pomegranate, and Hawaii Island black sea salt.

Papa's Sashimi Trio Appetizer

The entree we both decided on ahead of time was the Mahimahi caught along the north shore by Eric Nakamura, stuffed with lobster and crab, baked in a macadamia nut crust. It was also topped with asparagus and a small lobster tail. It was one of the most delicious entree’s we have eaten – fantastic!

Stuffed Mahimahi - Mama's Fish House

As we were finishing up our dinner the most fantastic looking dessert was delivered to the table across from us. The entire section stopped eating to have a look. The guy at the table next to theirs even asked to take a photo of it. So of course we had to order one for ourselves – it’s big enough to share. It was the Polynesian Black Pearl – a lilikoi chocolate mouse in a pastry seashell. It was amazing, just like everything else.

The Black Pearl - Mama's Fish House

Everything was so good that we actually considered making a reservation for a return visit a few days later, but weren’t sure what we would be doing just yet so decided to hold off. We ended up not being able to make it back up, but will definitely be back on our next trip.

View of the oceanfront dining portion of the restaurant:
Mama's Fish House

Beach at Mama's Fish House

Well worth the money at least once in your trip! Just remember to make reservations in advance!

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We found the Coconut’s Fish Cafe on TripAdvisor while looking for restaurants in Kihei.

It is a relatively new restaurant, that wasn’t here during our previous trip. They did an amazing job decorating the place:

Coconut's Fish Cafe, Maui

We stopped here for lunch one day,  and were very impressed. I had the Ono burger, Shauna had the Mahi Burger, and they were both awesome. The fries were very good as well.

Fish Burger at Coconut's Fish Cafe

We also at here for dinner after our long day trip around the Hana Highway and the Pipiwai Trail. It was after 8pm by the time we got back to Kihei that day, so we wanted something that would be fairly fast, but also very tasty. Since we had been here a few days before, we knew it would hit the spot after a long day of traveling – and it certainly did. My mom and brother really enjoyed it here as well.

We ended up wishing we had tried this place earlier on in our trip, as we likely would have eaten there a few more times as well, to sample some of the other great dishes on their menu. It is definitely a place we look forward to visiting again on our next trip to Maui.

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As with my top 10 beaches list, these are my favorites, so this list may not be the most well known or famous restaurants on the island of Maui, but they are still some of the top rated ones on tripadvisor. We tend to stay away from the ritzy and expensive places; preferring to eat at places that are affordable while still offering amazing food. The list is somewhat Kihei focused as well, since that is where we have stayed on each of our three visits to Maui.

#1 – Sansei Seafood and Sushi. One of the first restaurants we go to, and definitely the one we visit the most on each trip (usually at least three times a trip). Their fresh Hawaiian fish and sushi is amazing. Especially the rainbow roll shown below:

Sansei Restaurant, Maui

#2 – 808 Bistro. A newer restaurant right next to our condo at the Maui Banyan (and right behind Fred’s Mexican). We decided to give it a try, and then ended up going back again and again. The food was awesome and the portions were good.

Pork Chops @ 808 Bistro, Maui

#3 – Cafe O’Lei. One we found on tripadvisor and had not tried on our first two trips. Not the cheapest, but certainly not unreasonable. Especially for the great food and fresh fish.

Asian Shortribs at Cafe o'Lei, Maui Hawaii

#4 – Coconut’s Fish Cafe. Another newer place that was not here on our first two trips. But what an amazing place it is. The decor is certainly unique, and the food was awesome. We didnt know that a fish burger could taste so good.

Fish Burger at Coconut's Fish Cafe

#5 – Maui Coffee Roasters – One of our favorite places for an affordable breakfast. And Shauna’s favorite place for coffee – best coffee on the island she says.

Smoked Salmon Eggs Benedict @ Maui Coffee Roasters

#6 – Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse BBQ. Another great restaurant in Kihei. Not a big place but the flavor is strong and the food is awesome. Cant wait to get back again for those ribs and baked beans.

Fat Daddy's Smokehouse BBQ, Maui- Ribs

#7 – Sea House – Decent food, and an awesome location. We have been here a few times for lunch. Eating here with the ocean breeze blowing and the waves crashing is something we look forward to once again on our next trip.

Update – we went here on a return trip and didnt enjoy it as much. But the view was still amazing!

SeaHouse Restaurant at Napili Beach

#8 – Paia FishMarket. Another great affordable place for fish and chips and fish burgers. Although we ate at Coconut’s listed above more this past trip, as Paia is a bit of a drive from our condo in Kihei.

Fish'n'Chips at Paia Fishmarket Restaurant, Maui

#9 – Waterfront Restaurant. We came here during our wedding trip of 2008.

Update – this restaurant moved, and has since closed.

Waterfront Restaurant, Maui

#10 – Kihei Caffe. A great place for breakfast. Their banana-macadamia nut pancakes are awesome. This place will definitely be higher on our next list.

Kihei Cafe - Banana Macadamia Nut Pancakes

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We heard about Cafe O’Lei on TripAdvisor prior to our trip. It was one of the top rated restaurants in Kihei, so we really wanted to try it out. We ended up eating there our first night since it was relatively close to our condo at the Maui Banyan. Although it was closed when we first got there, as it was only 4:15pm local time. We were pretty hungry after the long flight and had hoped to find an early meal. We went to the coffee/smoothie bar next door and had a nice cold smoothie to help cool us down – we were struggling to adapt to the +28’C heat since it was still below zero when we left home that morning. It was actually a pretty good find, and we went back here four more times during our trip.

We went back up the stairs to Cafe O’Lei at 5pm, and were one of the first groups to be seated. The waitress actually just took our drink order and had to leave for a bit, to take part in their pre-dinner meeting to learn the specials for the night. The special was the swordfish, which sounded good to me. Shauna ordered the Asian Short Ribs and my mom ordered the jumbo prawns.

Asian Short Ribs:
Asian Shortribs at Cafe o'Lei, Maui Hawaii

Our drinks came out quickly, and we happily enjoyed the fresh baked bread that was still warm. Since we were one of the first groups there, our food came out pretty quickly. It was amazing and we were certainly very happy to be back in Hawaii once again.

Swordfish:
Swordfish at Cafe o'Lei, Maui Hawaii

This was the first place we ate during our trip, and ended up being the last place we ate as well – not that we planned it that way.
My brother and I both tried the Ahi tuna on our last night – it was amazing. I wasnt sure about all the spicy sauces that came with it, so I got them on the side, while he ordered the way it was supposed to be. I ended up adding almost all of my sauce on to my plate anyhow, so I might as well have gotten it like he did. But I liked that the waitress offered to bring it the way she did, just in case.

We will definitely be back to the Cafe O’Lei during our next trip to Maui, and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a good meal in Kihei.

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A small group from our wedding trip went to Fat Daddy’s BBQ Smokehouse during our wedding trip in 2008 and said it was very good. So we decided to try it during our latest trip in April 2011. We were very happy that we did. Their restaurant is nothing fancy, and not very big inside. But they more than make up for it with the food.

View from inside, looking towards the bar area:
Fat Daddy's BBQ- Maui Restaurant

We ordered the pulled pork and the full order of ribs – they tasted amazing, possibly the best ribs we have eaten. The flavor was very strong, and the meat was nice and tender. You get to choose from a couple different side orders, we chose the baked beans. These were also very tasty, and made right in the restaurant.

Fat Daddy's Smokehouse BBQ, Maui- Ribs

If you are not a fan of strong flavors, this may not be the place for you. My mom doesnt like bbq sauce very much, so this was not her favorite place on our trip. There are a few options that did not seem to be as strong. But the rest of us really enjoyed it here. The service was good and the food was awesome. We will definitely be stopping here again on our next trip.

Fat Daddy's Smokehouse BBQ, Maui

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We noticed a new restaurant near our condo at the Maui Banyan – the 808 Bistro. Which was convenient, as we had also seen it on TripAdvisor as one of the top restaurants in Kihei.
808 Bistro Maui Entrance

Our first trip here was for breakfast. I had the Banana Bread French Toast, and it was some of the better banana bread I have eaten. It comes with only banana bread though, and could have used a side of something. If I were to order it again I would look for something on the menu to add with it:
808 Bistro, Maui

My mom was pretty happy with the fruit bowl as well. It had a great variety, was a good size, and came with a side of their tasty banana bread:
808 Bistro, Maui

Shauna and Kevin ordered the focaccia breakfast sandwich with egg and portugese sausage. It came with a side of delicious hashbrowns. It definitely looked and smelled the best. They both said it was awesome, and I wished I had ordered it as well:
808 Bistro, Maui

We came back the next day for dinner, after our day trip to Napili Beach. We arrived just after the opened, and were able to take advantage of the early special. You get to choose a salad, main dish, and desert all for $23. And they definitely did not hold anything back on the portions. We got a good sized cesear salad, which we paid a bit extra for since we had read on tripadvisor that it was very very good – they make the entire thing on site. It certainly lived up to the hype. The pork chop dish was very good as well. We got two full sized porkchops, and were only able to eat one. The other one made a great lunch the next day. Shauna ordered the bread pudding, while Kevin and I got the brownie. We were all very happy. Shauna said it was one of the best bread pudding’s she had eaten, while the brownie was served hot over vanilla ice cream. These were quite big as well, but we took our time and managed to eat them all.

Pork chops at the 808 Bistro:
Pork Chops @ 808 Bistro, Maui

Bread pudding at the 808 Bistro:
Hawaiian Bread Pudding @ 808 Bistro, Maui

 

The 808 Bistro is definitely one of the best restaurants we found on the island of Maui. The food was great, the portions were large, and the service was very good. Overall it is an exceptional value and we are looking forward to returning here on our next visit to Maui.

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