Tastes of Maui + Hidden Gems

Whether you’re planning ahead or already on-island, look forward to the diverse plates of Maui’s cultural cuisine! From casual, fine-dining restaurants (yes … they can go together here!) to oceanfront fish houses with panoramic views or a simple grab and go, Maui has plenty of delicious choices to choose from. Here’s a few ideas on island.

Try Maui’s Local Plates. Have you heard of Maui’s “local food” or plate lunches? This is a specific and semi-official cuisine that Hawaiians have enjoyed for over a century. From back in the last days of the historical plantations, the plate lunches started being served by lunch wagons to construction workers and day laborers. This dish was so popular many local franchises and restaurants decided to add it to the menu. Today in Maui you find this local fav almost anywhere. Common entrées plate lunches include are the loco moco, lomilomi salmon, laulau, poi, Portuguese bean soup, kaibi ribs, chicken katsu, chow fun, hamburger steaks and macaroni salad. Many plate lunch outlets also sell “mini-plates” which come with the same entrées in smaller portions. Keep this in mind as you cruise the island in search of a satisfying local lunch.

Try these spots: Da Kitchen, Café O Lei, L & L Hawaiian BBQ

Enjoy Maui’s Fresh Fruit. Visitors highly enjoy the assortment of Maui’s fresh and tropical fruits found at our local farmers markets. Try our famous apple bananas, strawberry papaya, Maui island fresh pineapple, guava, coconut, lilikoi (passion fruit), coconuts, mangos, rumbatans, dragon fruit, and many others that you’ve probably never seen before.

Head “Up Country” or Stop by the Farmers Market for Fresh Produce: From fresh eggs to Maui’s famous sweet onions, Maui has a wide range of local farmers dedicated to growing our fresh island staples. Some of the best produce can be found at the farmers markets and if you’d like to discover more beyond that head up country towards the all famous Kula. Many farms take advantage of being nestled below Haleakala’s perfect cool morning weather. Rich soil and regular rainfall create perfect conditions for growing beautiful healthy food. Farms grows crops of lettuce, zucchini, squash, broccoli, bananas, papayas, strawberries, gold potatoes, and also tropical flowers and orchids. There is always a selection of fresh produce and flora available.

You love these markets: Kihei Farmer’s Market in North Kihei, the produce of the Saturday Swap Meet in Kahului, Kula Farmer’s Market

Want It Served? Then check out Maui’s All Famous Luaus. To capture the tastes of Maui settle under the stars and treat yourself to a show of lifetime while dining on a traditional feast of a Hawaiian Luau. Try the Kalua pig cooked in an imu (earth oven), haupia (coconut pudding) and poi (Hawaiian taro starch) just for starters. It truly is a gourmet Hawaiian spread, paired with drinks and an ocean front view.

Lovely Luaus: Honuaula Luau in Wailea, The Feast at Lele, Old Lahaina Luau, Ulalena’s Luau in Makena