I have to admit, I brake for burgers. So when I saw the sign “Paukus Burgers $1.50” I pulled in. Since you can barely get a piece of candy for a dollar fifty, a burger at that price seems like a real deal. The Paukukalo Store is open again, and back under its original owners, making their “paukus burgers” that Waiehu folks have been missing for a few years. You can’t miss the spot: the building has a bright blue island style mural of waves and mountains on it. The iconic Waiehu Beach Road store went through a few different leases and paint-jobs before the owners decided to re-paint and reopen their own Filipino food and burger store. These burgers are strictly no-frills, but they are irresistible for reasons that transcend price. The warm soft white bun and the seasoned ground beef filling is the equivalent of a Filipino-style manapua. The folks at Paukukalo Store hand over these steamy sandwiches from 6am to 4pm Monday through Friday and 6 am to 2pm on Saturdays.
Dairy Queen is celebrating National Ice Cream month with a new Blizzard flavor: Triple Chocoholic. This thick ice cream dream treat contains truffles, chocolate chunks and dark fudge blended with their signature vanilla soft serve. DQ also kicks off this promotion with a buy one, get one free coupon available by signing up for the blizzard fan club. I just signed up to see if it worked and got my coupon for the Lahaina Cannery Mall DQ. The Blizzard was first served in 1985 and has been a hit ever since.
If you want to see fireworks for the Fourth of July you have to head to Lahaina where Front Street closes at 5 pm for the revelry. LahainaTown Action Committee will be hosting a Front Street Food Fair at Campbell Park right between Captain Jack’s, the Wharf and the Baldwin House Museum. Lahaina Canoe Club will sell chili, rice, hot dogs and chili dogs; Outrigger Pizza Co. will sell 10-inch pizzas; there will be shave ice by Local Boys Shave Ice, and Original Aloha Kettle Korn will have kettle corn, fresh coconut, coconut water and lemonade. LAC will have beverages for sale as well.
David Paul’s Island Grill will have an early seating three-course special for the 4th at $39.95. But the real party will be their post-firework Backyard Party celebration from 8pm to close with $5 cocktails, wine and complimentary pupus for $15 per person and DJ entertainment.
The Hyatt Maui has a special Independence Day treat. The annual month-long live music appearance of Citrus College Performing Arts starts June 30, and their first weekend highlights will be a Red White and Blue Party on July 2nd from 10pm to 1am at the Monarchy, and nightly appearances by Japengo (5:30-7:30) and Umalu (4pm -9pm). On the fourth they will have a special show at Umalu starting at 7:30pm.
Kapalua will be celebrate the 4th with a BBQ dinner, hula hoop contest, sack races, balloon toss and live entertainment at Village Cafe and Sweet Shoppe. The menu includes barbecue chicken, kalbi ribs, hamburgers, hot dogs, coleslaw, potato salad and corn on the cob. Fabulous treats from the sweet shoppe will be available all day, as well as popcorn and ice cream. Tickets are $30 adult and $20 child, and under 5 are free, but prices go up on July 3 so get them now by calling 665-1122. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Beyond the Rainbow Foundation, a charity for Maui’s youth.
Paired dinners don’t slow down for the fourth. The Grand Wailea will host the July installment of Toast! with a sake pairing five course dinner at Humuhumunukunukuapua’a on Friday, July 1. Chef Bancaco gets to play with sake selections by Kikasake-shi Scott Dalton (sake expert to you). His Japanese-inspired menu includes negi toro, Kona crab congee, kumamoto oysters and Kakuni veal cheek. Reception starts at 5:30 and reservations are $100.
On Tuesday and Wednesday the Sheraton Maui’s Black Rock Steak and Seafood Restaurant will host the Wine Nine and Dine series, combining nine holes of golf on the Kaanapali course and four courses of fine food and wine. Chef Aquino will present this installment that begins with Chicken Consommé Confetti Vegetables, Lemongrass Oil Pop Over, Mango Butter and 2009 Migration “Russian River” Chardonnay. Golf tees off at 3pm. Call 661-3691 to reserve a spot at $114 per person (non-golf is $89).
Canoes Restaurant at the end of Front Street in Lahaina will be closed, renovating and reopening as a Five Palms. Monsoon India opened in the Wharf, bringing their Indian cuisine empire to the Westside. According to my local Indian cuisine expert and vegetarian pal Jefferson Wery, their food is very tasty. Also at the Wharf, Da Kitchen has a two-dinner special for $22 with a choice of 10 entrees, with rice and mac salad.
Want to brush up on your wine knowledge? Tim Bruns is forming a wine group to meet outdoors in Kahana. It’s a chance to familiarize yourself wines of the world and eat pupus in a casual environment. Call Bruns at 669-3866 if you’re interested.
Noble Chef has nailed down a date for its 15th annual benefit for Maui Culinary Academy held at the Fairmont Kealani, Oct. 22, 2011. Maui Culinary Academy’s biggest fundraiser pairs students with Mentor Chefs to present a portion of the menu at the event, and raises funds for scholarship programs, all in the fine setting of the Fairmont. Better Brands Hawaii and Ocean Vodka will pair the multi-course dinner and teaching the students about the importance of pairing beverages. Sponsorship opportunities and tables are available now. Contact Marilyn Fornwall of the UH Foundation at 984-3261, or email at email@example.com. ■
Got a hot food scoop? Contact Jen Russo at 808-280-3286 or fax to 808-244-0446.
For more foodie news, visit MauiTime’s food blog at: mauidish.com