Photo by Patrice Neff/Wikimedia Commons
Tokyo Tei on Lower Main in Wailuku is a bit like stepping through a door to Japan. The sizzling hot tempura, noodle dishes and ramen served in lacquer with chopsticks can whisk you there with a single taste. Every meal is served Japanese style, with miso soup, rice and hot tea. The restaurant has spanned several generations on Maui, but was started in 1934 by a sumo wrestler who moved here by boat. Sumo wrestlers know how to eat, and that tradition remains to this day. 1063 Lower Main, Wailuku; 808-242-9630; tokyotei.com
Runner-up: Japengo (JR) 200 Nohea Kai Drive, Kaanapali; 808-667-4796.