Thanksgiving on Maui, where to go and what to eat 2012

Thanksgiving DInner Cruises Offered by Pacific Whale Foundation


It’s time to pause for thanks over a feast fit for kings. If you’re not up for cooking a turkey, you’re in luck because there are plenty of places open and ready to make your Thanksgiving meal for you (and clean up afterwards!).

Hard Rock Cafe will feed the homeless on Thanksgiving from 10am to 2pm but will open to regular cafe operations at 2pm.

Don’t worry about not having turkey sandwiches if you let someone else do the cooking for you. At Hula Grill, when you get their roasted fresh turkey with sage gravy and kalua pork mac nut apple dressing with all the fixings, they send you home with a “brown bag leftover turkey sandwich to go.”

The Westin Maui is offering turkey two ways. There’s a Thanksgiving dinner buffet poolside at the Ono Bar & Grill. Selections there include the chilled seafood bar, house-made smoked salmon, oven-roasted striploin of beef, guava-glazed ham, roast turkey, seafood cioppino, grilled swordfish, salad specials, pecan pies, cranberry bread pudding, cupcakes, pumpkin cheesecake and more, all served 4:30-8pm. At Tropica Restaurant & Bar, Chef de cuisine Jennifer Evetushick has prepared a three-course prix fixe menu for $65 per person that includes torn kale salad with goat cheese and Alaea roasted pepitas, ginger-anised spiced turkey with Maui onion kalua pork stuffing and Yukon Gold mashed potatoes and pumpkin Clafoutis with spiced cheesecake ice cream.

The Hyatt Regency Japengo will serve Turkey Day classics with a Pacific Rim flair and sushi. At the Drums of the Pacific Luau, there will be a Thanksgiving addition to the traditional Hawaiian buffet. Umalu will feature a casual Thanksgiving buffet with sea salt and black pepper-crusted prime rib, Molokai purple potato smash, bacon-wrapped pork with Jack Daniel’s sauce, brined turkey with stuffing and a big serving of live music.

Gerard’s will serve a Colorado lamb shank with daube ragout simmered in red wine with Swiss chard mac and cheese, Malama Farm-curried pork kebab with leeks and Maui onion and banana poi, and a veal chop ala creme with sage with madeira and cognac cream sauce, morels and beet puree with stuffed artichoke.

At The Westin Ka‘anapali Ocean Resort Villas, Executive chef Francois Milliet and his culinary team will present the Harvest Table Buffet at the Ocean Pool Bar & Grill with an array of specials including island seafood, Pacific oysters, herb-roasted turkey, maple-glazed sweet potatoes, braised ham, a carvery station, desserts and more. At Pulehu, Executive Sous Chef Wes Holder has designed a superb four-course Thanksgiving Harvest Dinner that includes Ho‘opono Farm arugula salad, L&R Farms Molokai sweet potato gnocci, roasted turkey and Zia Maria’s pumpkin gelato. Even more interesting, the third annual Scarecrow Building Competition takes place on Nov. 22. Put on your creative cap and indulge in the hilarious fun as you build and decorate the best looking and most unique scarecrow. The winning entries will be awarded resort prizes. Other delightful events planned that day include a pumpkin pie eating contest and designing an edible bouquet. Visit the resort’s website at for more details.

At the Napili Kai, get your thanks on with their special bar pupu menu and Thanksgiving menus. Pineapple Grill is doing breakfast and lunch till 1pm, then they reopen for their Thanksgiving dinner at 4pm. Merriman’s Kapalua will have a roasted organic turkey with all the fixings starting at 4pm for $44 (kids $22).

I’o will host a Thanksgiving buffet for $55 per adult and Pacific’O will have a special Thanksgiving dish along with their regular menu. The Blue Lagoon at the Wharf will do a special Thanksgiving lunch from $17.99, or turkey burger or sandwich for $12. They close at 4pm.

Does Thanksgiving float? The Pacific Whale Foundation has a cruise leaving from Ma‘alaea with your name on it. The menu includes kalua turkey with giblet gravy, island kalua ham with guava jelly, Portuguese sausage stuffing, whipped garlic potatoes, corn on the cob, Upcountry greens with Maui onion dressing, grilled island vegetables, fresh baked taro and soft rolls. Dessert includes pumpkin haupia squares, mini pumpkin pies and double chocolate brownies. Adult guests over 21 with a valid photo ID can enjoy up to three alcoholic beverages with their meal. All guests can choose unlimited soda, soft drinks and filtered water. The price is $84.95 for adults and $59.95 for children ages three to 12. Children ages two and under go free, one per paying adult.

Buzz’s Wharf in Ma‘alaea will have a Thanksgiving buffet for $28 per person and $14 for keiki under 12, though they will also have a limited regular menu available. The Dunes is hosting a Thanksgiving brunch buffet starting at 10am going to 3pm with an amazing spread for $34 per person.

King Kamehameha Golf Course is serving a Thanksgiving lunch buffet running from 9am to 1pm, or you can go to the Kahili Restaurant’s extravagant dinner buffet 4-7:30pm for $34.95 per person.

The Grand Wailea will go Hawaiian style, offering a unique Thanksgiving luau experience. The feast includes imu turkey and kalua pig, oven-baked macadamia nut-crusted mahimahi, clams, mussels and ono. Call 808-875-1234 ext. 4500 to reserve seats and visit for full menu.

Capische? is featuring an exquisite locally inspired tasting menu. Stella Blues will open for breakfast at 7:30am as usual but Thanksgiving dinner starts at 1pm. Their entrees will include a slice of pumpkin or pecan pie, and kids under five eat free (one kid per adult). Spago’s will serve a complete Thanksgiving plate with organic turkey and the works for $48 starting at 2:15pm, and kama‘aina can get it for $24 until 4:45pm.

At Gannon’s, the Thanksgiving feast starts at 3pm for their self-serve buffet, and they will serve their regular menu as well. At Joe’s, their turkey entree begins at 4pm and their regular dinner menu will be served as well.

The Fairmont Kea Lani will be serving a gourmet buffet on their Polo Beach Lawn with glazed ham, seafood stations and roast turkey. They will have a premium bar available and plan to make it a Thanksgiving to remember with live Hawaiian entertainment.

Ocean’s in Kihei will serve Thanksgiving plates starting at 11am for $12.95 for lunch and $14.95 for dinner. They will be celebrating until 2 am. Hit up Ambrosia for their special holiday nog-tini martinis.

At Makena Beach & Golf Resort, Thanksgiving is served at the Molokini Bar and Grill with an amazing menu inspired by Chef Marc McDowell. They have roast turkey but will also present an amazing spread that includes pan-seared catch of the day, grilled chicken breast, Wagyu beef ravioli and fresh seafood like shrimp and crab. For reservations call 808-875-5888.

Haliimaile General Store will serve a buffet from 2-7pm for only $38 and $22 for kids. Charley’s Restaurant and Saloon will be open from 7am to 7pm on Thanksgiving day with their regular menu available in addition to a special Thanksgiving offering.

Then again, maybe you just want to eat at home but need a boost. You have a few options. Vineyard Food Company will have a full turkey dinner menu and sides to order, and they will be available for pickup or delivery on Nov. 21 (the day prior to Thanksgiving). All menu items may be kept refrigerated and if necessary, re-heated on the Nov. 22.

Whole Foods is preparing all of the turkey and sides and you can even order it for pickup in ceramic dishes that look like you cooked it yourself. Honu will be selling Thanksgiving pies from Pastry Chef Liz McDonald, including the vegan gluten-free squash and sweet potato pie, a papaya poha cherry and mixed nut “pecan pie” (order by this Saturday, Nov. 17) and pick up on Nov. 21 starting at 9am.

Of course, Maui Tacos will be open island wide on Thanksgiving, serving their fresh Mexican food. Not everyone wants turkey, right?