We've reached midweek and therefore it's time for my second Hawaii-report. This time, I'll present you my personal
food guide to my favorite places to eat and dine on Maui and O'ahu. Let's start with Maui.
Maui isn't the cheapest place on earth and you probably already knew that but I have to admit, that I was kinda shocked when I arrived on the island. Especially, after O'ahu, which hasn't been as expensive as I expected it to be. So, if you're ever on Maui, following one of my advices, getting the feeling that this one is kinda high-priced – everything is on Maui.
Short example: I bought some Kona coffee on O'ahu for $12,99 / 12,00€. The exact same coffee bag costs $30 / 27€ on Maui. So, you'll probably get what I'm talking about by now.
Anyway, Maui was the place where I had the best Thai-food ever.
Seriously. In Berlin, there are dozens of Thai-restaurants and a lot of them are really yummy but this place, it was really delicious.
Maui Thai Bistro
You will find the Bistro on South Kihei Road, in Kihei (Southwest-Maui), on the left side behind the Cafe O'Lei. The Maui Thai Bistro offers a great variety of several curries, as well as fresh fish and pupus (appetizers). The restaurant's establishment is modern and simple, the service is absolutely friendly, fast and great. They offer several nuances of spiciness. I tried medium both times I ate there and it was already pretty spicy but still tasty. So have in mind how much spiciness you're able to take, when ordering your severity level. Try the Mahi Mahi with Chili Sauce, it's absolutely outstanding, as well as the Drunken Crispy Fish. I can also recommend the Green Curry with Chicken and the Chili Edamame.
If you want to eat a bit more “American”, you should choose Moose McGillycuddy's, just a little further down South Kihei Road. It's located right across the beach and you'll experience a wonderful sunset during your dinner. Moose's is more of a pub and a sports bar but the TVs won't blare at you. The atmosphere is loose and the furniture is kinda funny. Picture frames are distributed all over the walls with the weirdest photos ever. Moose's has also an ATM inside. The prices are pretty okay in here for Maui conditions.
The spinach-artichoke dip as a starter is quite delicious with it's light spiciness. I had the grilled Mahi Mahi Sandwich as an entree. It was also really tasty, the only thing that acquired kind of a taste was the bun. It wasn't actually a sandwich or even a burger bun. It was a brioche and therefore kinda sweet but it was good nevertheless and the servings where definitely big enough as probably around everywhere in the United States.
Maui Bread Company
My final tip for Maui won't be another restaurant, it's actually a bakery. The Maui Bread Company is located inside of the Dolphin Plaza. It's a tiny and cute place that offers several baked goods including local specialties as well as Mochi (a Japaneses rice cake), iced tea and homemade lemonade. The artichoke, pesto & feta bread is recommended as well as the jalapeño-cheese one.
The best places to eat on O'ahu are definitely food trucks. They have a long tradition in Hawaii and can be found everywhere around the islands but O'ahu is THE food truck paradise.
Pupukea Grill is probably the most famous food truck along the North Shore and also the local's favorite one. The Grill can be found behind the grocery store Foodland, catty-corner of Shark's Cove. You can't miss the blue truck. It's specialty is Poké, the Hawaiian national dish.
Poké is raw tuna (also called Ahi in Hawaii) with Salad and it's freshly prepared in dozens of versions. Nearly everyone has his own special way of marinating Pokè. You can't compare the tuna you'll get in Germany with tuna from Hawaii. It tastes absolutely different and so fresh. The best dish you can order at Pupukea Grill is the Spicy Tuna Quinoa Bowl.
The quinoa is cooked with sea weed which gives it that delicious special something. Big plus: the whole dish is very healthy.
Crispy Grindz offers Brazilian food, has the best Acai Bowl on O'ahu and is located right across the street at Banzai Pipeline. Acai Bowls are, next to Poké, another treat that is offered everywhere in Hawaii, consisting of refreshing acai-sorbet, granola, banana and a slight drop of honey. You can add nearly any other ingredient you desire on top of your Acai Bowl at Crispy Grindz such as peanut butter, strawberries, chia seeds, coconut, blueberries and so on and so forth.
My personal advice: grab a bowl, cross the street and watch the sunset and the surfers at Pipeline beach. Best way to relax.
Not even 1 km/ 1 mi down the road, you'll end up at Sunset beach and this is where you'll find the Fruit Seller most of the time. A kinda worn out, brown truck that offers freshly prepared smoothies and cold coconut. You can choose between several fruits and create your own smoothie. I tried pineapple mango and mango lime. It's the perfect place to stop and refresh. If you're getting a coconut, stay near the truck and once you've done drinking the water, the owner will open the coconut, so you can enjoy the fresh coconut flesh.
The historic district of Hale'iwa, a surfer town just 10 km/ 5,8 mi from Sunset beach, also offers a great variety of food trucks. 'okina cafe is one of them, also having a great Ahi Poké Bowl on its menu. You can choose from four marinades and the ahi gets served with jasmine rice. It's different The Green Tea Lemonade is very refreshing on a hot day.
You will also find Giovanni's shrimp truck on the food truck market in old Hale'iwa. I don't like shrimps at all – yes, shame on me, I didn't eat them, not even in Hawaii – but one of the locals from Maui told me and my friend, that Giovanni's is THE address for the best shrimps around the island and that he would stop by whenever he's on O'ahu. So, if you're into shrimps, you should probably try that one.
Ted's is located at the Kamehameha highway, 3,2km / 2 mi from Sunset beach. The bakery is long-established and you can't miss out on it during your stay on O'ahu. It offers breakfast with huge servings, baked goods - the cinnamon roll and the pecan roll are absolutely delicious – and their famous chocolate haupia pay. Another Hawaiian speciality. Haupia is something similar to a coconut pudding.
The pie so sweet but you will definitely enjoy it and you won't stay hungry, I guarantee it.
There are tons of great food trucks and great restaurants in Hawaii and I could go on like this for a little more but I don't want to overwhelm you guys. The ones I've mentioned are really worth a try and you shouldn't miss out on them, if you're ever staying on Maui or O'ahu.
Next time, we're finally focusing on one of the most important things in Hawaii – the beaches ;)
Until then, happy traveling.