I guess its really hard to make a go of Indian food on Maui. Are our palates not refined enough for their toasty spices, unique curries and savory pastries? It breaks my heart to report on another restaurant closing its doors, but I know its a tough business.
When they opened in 2009 we were there to welcome them to the foodie Maui community but alas it did not last, for their doors were closed this week.
New Indian joint dishes hearty, authentic fare
Maui Masala 2395 S. Kihei Rd. #110, Kihei Wed.-Mon., 11:30am-2pm, 5:30pm-8pm 875-9000
September 17, 2009
The recent closing of Shangri La By the Sea in Kihei threatened to leave South Maui, and really the whole island, without an Indian food option. Enter two new Indian joints: Monsoon India, which as of this writing promised on its Web site to open “very soon” at Shangri La’s old waterfront location at Menehune Shores, and Maui Masala, which opened about a month ago in the Dolphin Plaza.
Tucked away in a small space (seating is either inside at a counter or outside on communal plastic tables) Maui Masala defines unassuming. The menu is simple, but contains all the essential dishes lovers of Indian food will expect.
A meal with one entrée plus rice or naan (leavened flat-bread) is $7; you can get two entrées for $9 or three for $12. Entrées include grilled meats, curries and veggie dishes. I opted for the chicken tikka masala, chunks of boneless chicken in a thick, tangy sauce made of tomatoes, onions, garlic and a hint of ginger. It’s rich and flavorful, but mild enough for the spice-averse. An order of two samosas—flaky pastries stuffed with lightly spiced potatoes and peas—proved a perfect complement. Items I’m excited to sample next time include the tandoori chicken and the garlic naan.
So come on—show support, Maui. This place is good, and it’s not like there’s an Indian joint around every corner. Maui Time Weekly, Jacob Shafer
2395 S. Kihei Rd. #110, Kihei
Wed.-Mon., 11:30am-2pm, 5:30pm-8pm