JENNIFER EVETUSHICK, CHEF DE CUISINE, TROPICA
“Like the concept of the ‘ahupua‘a system, the culture of sustainability and sourcing locally must be past down from generation to generation.”
The Westin Maui Resort & Spa
2365 Kaanapali Pkwy, Lahaina
Ahupua‘a four course tasting menu: $55
Eating local is the study of the Hawaiian culture. Each island was divided into triangular pieces, extending from the top of the mountain, through the forests, the agricultural fields, the living areas along the shoreline and out to the reef. Small sections of these triangles were called ‘ahupua‘a. The Hawaiians valued their `ahupua`a based on an efficient water source from the mountain to the sea.
Our Ahupua’a menu reflects the same concept. The menu includes Hawaiian Blue Opae, Kula Onion Risotto, Natural Prime Strip and Baked Hawaii. The Opae (shrimp) from Big Island originates from within the water source, the Kula Onion and Prime Strip are from the pastures cultivated and grown by the water source and finally the coconut for our Baked Hawaii is from the coconut trees on our island’s beaches, located at the bottom of the water source.
This menu is special because it teaches us the value of our resources here on the islands. If we learn to take care of our ‘aina (land) and care for each other we all can reap all the benefits it has to offer. This is what our Hawaiian ancestors would want us to do–be pono, to do the right thing.