Summer is the season of barbecue, although on Maui we get to cook with fire all year round. This weekend, the Grand Wailea celebrates cooking outdoors in two live-fired, grilled and smoked, opulent foodie feasts called Fire It Up! First, Sea to Fire on Friday night honors Hawai‘i’s connection to ocean delicacies. The Saturday counterpart, BBQ of the Pacific, is an epic fire-roasted proteins fest. Just to make the BBQ even more succulent, Grand Wailea executive chef Ryan Urig selected nearly all the proteins: two steer, six whole hogs, and one lamb, all from the 4H Livestock Auction at Maui AgFest. Makana will play on Friday and the Eric Gilliom All Star Band featuring Barry Flanagan will play Saturday.
“Participating chefs were asked to focus on the naturally diverse elements and landscapes of Maui along with Hawaiian culture and history,” says Urig. “On Friday, all our chef’s dishes are makai [ocean] inspired. Grand Wailea’s Hawaiian Cultural Ambassador describes Sea to Fire as “a way to honor those first arrivals to these islands, before the time when Hawaiians farmed the land, when they came only with what they had from the sea. These voyagers of the Pacific had found the home they saw in their dreams. Seafood was the staple protein and we harken back to those times.”
The lavish affair brings visiting guest chefs and pitmasters from North Carolina, Texas, Atlanta, Colorado, Alabama, and O‘ahu so you don’t even have to get on a plane to sample the smoky flavors of barbecue traditions from all over our country applied to our locally sourced bounty.
“We then asked our chefs to keep Maui culture and history in mind while applying their refined culinary palates and innovative cooking techniques to their menu items,” says Urig. “For Saturday’s BBQ of the Pacific, all menu items are mauka [mountain] inspired, featuring livestock from Maui’s 4H program and produce from local farmers, to create a Hawai‘i-style BBQ like no other! The BBQ pitmasters and chefs were asked to create dishes that are also rooted in their personal history – many of them are second and third generation pit masters – with a little Hawai‘i flare.”
There are more ways to fire it up than you think.
“A variety of cooking techniques will be used throughout the event, all involving live fire,” says Urig. “From cowboy cauldrons and custom made cinderblock barbecue pits to a cedar plank salmon smoking pit and a 9,000-pound, three barrel custom smoker, our chefs will be showing off their live-fire culinary creativity.”
The BBQ team hasn’t forgotten about the veggies either. The event also features a sweet selection of desserts to balance out the celebration.
“Fire-roasted and charred vegetables are the perfect way to compliment smoked, grilled, and barbecued proteins,” says Urig. “In addition to the posted menu items on Saturday, the Grand Wailea chefs will be serving a variety of veggie dishes including grilled spring onions with black garlic mac nut romesco sauce, ash-cooked potatoes (potatoes are stuffed into the ash of the kiawe fire pit!), charred sweet kula corn and many other vegetarian options.”
The barbecue wouldn’t be complete with a full selection of summer themed boozy refreshment to leverage all that grilled meat consumption. Beverages by Ocean Vodka, Veuve, Kosta Browne and Bonterra Wines, Buffalo Trace, Pau Vodka, and Maui Brewing Company will be featured.
“Cooking on fire is all about letting that natural, smoky, charred aroma infuse the proteins and really enhance their flavors,” says Urig. “Add a little Hawaiian sea salt and fresh cracked pepper also helps you taste the integrity of the meat and seafood. Something about grilling is much more relaxed than cooking in an indoor kitchen.”
The recent smoky state of Central Maui was not lost on our local chefs. Last Friday, the team at the Grand Wailea provided the hard working emergency personnel fighting the fires with grub, and tickets as a thank you for their service. To get tickets of your own call the Grand Wailea or visit FireItUpMaui.com.
Sea to Fire
Friday, July 19, 2019 | 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Makai (ocean) inspired live-fire culinary event honoring Hawaii’s ancient connection to the ocean and its bounty. Featuring seafood paired with fine wine, sake & spirits along with live musical entertainment from MAKANA.
- Jonathan Waxman -Grilled Ahi with Crispy Rice & Romesco Salsa
- Michael & Bryan Voltaggio -Caviar Flatbread with Uni Cream, Maui Onions & Ogo; Orecchiette Nero with Blue Crab, Coconut Tomato Brodo, Uni, Pepperoni crumb
- Xavier Salomon -Prawn & Octopus Zarandeado with Chorizo, Pork Chicaron, Mezcal and Avocado Cilantro Serano Crema
- Hubert Keller – Wood Smoked Wild Salmon, Carrot & Ginger Sauce with Hearts of Palm, Red Ogo, and Asparagus
- Ed Kenney -He’e Lu’au
- Alvin Savella -Kiawe Smoked Uni Custard with Kona Abalone Relish, Ikura, Ogo
- Mark Noguchi -Wun Tun Soup with Axis Deer Dumplings, Lāwalu Catch, Charred Chili Oil; Kupa`a Potato Sopes with Hawai`i MASA, Chorizo Potato, Avocado, Salsa Macha
- Fabrice Benezit -KOI Fish Ice Cream Cone with kiawe ice cream & ube sweet chips; Squid Ink Macaroon with blueberry ocean jam; Sweet Uni with mango & lilikoi curd, whipped cream and pineapple foam
- Tadashi Yoshino -Sushi by Tadashi. Fresh Selection of Sashimi, Nigiri & Maki
Fire It Up! BBQ of the Pacific
Saturday, July 20, 2019 | 6:30pm – 9:30pm (VIP Entry at 6:00pm)
Mauka (mountain) inspired live-fire culinary event showcasing the country’s finest BBQ pit masters paired with craft beer, bourbon, and live entertainment from the Eric Gilliom All Star Band featuring Barry Flanagan!
- Sam Jones -Whole Hog Sliders with Sweet Slaw
- Justin Brunson -Whole Hog Carnitas
- Wayne Mueller -Beef Short Ribs
- Chris Lilly -Smoked Chicken with Alabama White Sauce, Smoked Hominy & Cheese
- John Tesar -Mechado-Style Ribeye with Carolina Gold Rice
- Miguel Vidal -Kiawe Smoked Beef Fajitas & Mexican Tropical Ceviche
- Cody Taylor & Jiyeon Lee -Smoked Kalbi Short Rib with Japche
- Sheldon Simeon -Big Island Style Smoke Meat
- Daniel Anthony -Traditional Hawaiian Imu & Hand Pounded Pai’ai
- Chefs of Grand Wailea -Oyster Pan Roast; Wild Boar Chili with Kiawe Smoked Cornbread
- Fabrice Benezit -Smoke S’more; Maple Chocolate Bacon Banana; Chimney Cake, Pistachio Ice Cream, Kona Coffee Gelato; Coconut Lilikoi Mousse
Sea to Fire:
- Ocean Vodka: Wailea Sunset (vodka, lilikoi, lemon juice, local honey, hibiscus)
- Veuve Clicquot
- Kosta Browne Wine
- Maui Brewing Company
- Full Bar
BBQ of the Pacific
- Buffalo Trace: Smoked Pineapple Old Fashion, Honey Bourbon Iced Tea (bourbon, local honey, elderflower liqueur, passion fruit iced tea)
- Pau Vodka: Guava Thyme Mule: (vodka, guava juice, guava puree, fresh lime, ginger beer)
- Kosta Browne Wine (VIP Section only)
- Bonterra Wine (Rose, Sauv Blanc, and Elysian Merlot)
- Maui Brewing Co.