I’m a glutton when it comes to good food. I don’t eat until I’m full, I eat until it’s gone—like the whole pot. Not just that, I eat often. If I go a few hours without munching on something, I get cranky and mean. Meaner than normal, and that can prove to be disastrous. I just can’t help it. Food makes me feel peaceful, happy, sane and alive.
I’m typically not particularly picky when it comes to food. I have kids, so some of my snacks consist of leftover Mac & Cheese, hot-dogs and random noodles in ketchup. Except Vienna sausage. I draw the line at the little wieners. I just can’t do it.
A few weeks ago, I discovered Cloud Nine Cafe in Makawao. This place is turning me into a picky eater. It’s outdoors right next door to Komoda Bakery (a major staple in my diet) and across the street from Rodeo General Store (which has a great selection of beer and wine) so you could say that it’s in the perfect location.
Not only does Cloud Nine serve up amazing delicacies at fast-food prices, it has great ambiance. It kind of puts the $7 extra-value meal consumed while downshifting to shame.
The cafe is pretty much a genius idea. It resembles a gigantic glorified covered street vendor cart. Ordering my food there always makes me feel hip—lots of polished stainless steel, fresh baked goods, latte’s and a full breakfast and lunch menu. They have a few tables where you can eat your food in the crisp Makawao breeze and are working on getting the space for a bunch more.
My favorite lunch-time meal from Cloud Nine has to be the Kalua Pig Po’ Boy, with some homemade soup and a Yoga Berry smoothie. Cloud Nine transforms kalua pig from something you eat at graduation parties into something the Food Network really needs to highlight.
Its soft, succulent meat, with just enough smokey flavor to make your eyes roll up in ecstasy, is piled on a ciabatta roll that is one part soft and one part chewy (totally perfect) with Asian slaw. The concoction is topped with Lavender Poha Berry dijonaise and a little Hoisin sesame sauce. I’m going into withdrawals just talking about it.
I’ve tried the lentil soup du jour—and let me tell you, it’s more like a meal than a soup. Slow-cooked and chock full of tender, simmered vegetables and massive amounts of flavor.
The Yoga Berry Smoothie makes you feel healthy and happy. It’s blended with bananas, mixed berries, organic apple juice, organic yogurt and honey. Technically, a smoothie alone should be enough to fulfill a normal person.
Their menu is extensive. For breakfast I think I’m going to try the Mediterranean Quiche, or maybe the Indonesian Fried Rice. On second thought, I’ll try both. On my list for lunch is the Grilled Miso Beer Chicken (how yummy does that sound?) and Mongolian Baby Back Ribs.
As a side note, business partners Scott Olival and Jahlel Hunter are just as yummy as their dishes. Just thought that you should know that. Admit it, good food is always better when served by a smokin’ chef. MTW