We may live on a remote island in the Pacific Ocean, but when it comes to dining, nobody needs to suffer from rock fever. Lucky for us, Maui has a tradition of food that precedes any restaurant ever built. Look no further than your neighbor’s imu pit, if you need proof. Chefs here can spin off of so many different cultural foods that the whole island is a fusion of fusions. Even if you dine out a couple days a week, you’ll still need a year to get through this list of essential restaurants…
1. Plantation House – Extraordinary wine dinners and everything else.
2. Village Cafe – Red Velvet Cupcakes.
3. Sansei: Kapalua, Kihei – DK Kodama’s genius menu is still amazing.
4. Ritz Kapalua: Kai sushi, Banyan Tree – The Ritz puts the red carpet out for Kamaaina.
5. Merriman’s Kapalua – Have you had some wine and pupus on the deck next to the fire pit?
6. Pineapple Grill – Amazing kobe burger for lunch, spinach brie and salmon scramble breakfast.
7. Sea House – The views of Napili Bay over breakfast or pupus.
8. Cafe o’ Lei: Kihei, Wailuku, Napili – The reasonable menu is spun of gold, and you cant go wrong.
9. Maui Brew Pub – Maui’s own microbrews on tap and pizza
10. Roy’s Kahana – Asian fusion the Yamaguchi way
11. Serpico’s – Pizza and calzones worth making a special drive to Pukalani for
12. Java Jazz – eclectic lounge, music, food, booze and coffee
13. Fish Market – Buy your fish and eat it, too.
14. Honokowai Okazuya – Mahi Lemon Caper.
15. Rodeo General Store – Kale Salad.
16. Duke’s – Ohia Bar.
17. Pulehu – Buffet Night!
18. Sheraton Black Rock – Views of Black Rock.
19. Tiki Terrace, Kaanapali Beach Hotel – Perfect location for kamaaina to play tourist.
20. Hula Grill – Sand under your feet in the restaurant. Yes!
21. Leilani’s – Taco Tuesday.
22. Westin Tropica – The chefs go off here.
23. Royal Lahaina – Barfoot Bar is the bomb.
24. Hyatt: Japengo, Umalu, Sonz – It’s a dining trifecta.
25. Five Palms: Lahaina, Kihei – Sushi and Pacific Rim.
26. Mala, Wailea, Lahaina – The best oyster shooters in the world, and everything else.
27. China Boat – Chinese take out and delivery only in Kahana.
28. Honu – New restaurant! The Ellman Team’s latest creation.
29. Aloha Mix Plate – Have you ever eaten a kalua pig omelette?
30. Teddie Bigger Burger – I dare you to have a chicken sandwich.
31. David Paul’s – Wine dinners are enchanting, sky lounge is hip
32. Ruth’s Chris: Lahaina, Wailea – Sometimes you just need a Ruth’s Chris steak.
33. Hard Rock – Anti Cobb, Portobello, the menu rocks.
34. Lahaina Cafe – Early morning to late night, great Vietnamese, plus rumplemintz.
25. Longhi’s: Lahaina, Wailea- Bob Longhi’s iconic checkerboard black and white tiled floors are still there in Lahaina after 38 years, and the menu has always dazzled.
26. Thai Chef – Beef Salad is startlingly delicious.
27. Lahaina Prime Rib & Fish House – Its pretty much in their name.
28. Mai Tai lounge – Got Mai Tai?
29. Kimo’s – Quintessential Lahaina Dining and the evening music selections have been off the hook.
30. Captain Jack’s – Arrrghe, ya scallywag, If ye don’t like the fish and chips, ye ken walk the plank.
31. Lahaina Pizza Co. – Shrimp Thermador pizza and Pizookie.
32. Sunrise Cafe – A ray of sunshine in Lahaina.
33. Pioneer Inn – Historic Martinis.
34. Da Kitchen – Most badass portions of local food ever.
35. Monsoon India: Kihei, Lahaina – Two locations in which to get your India on.
36. Cool Cat – Best Burger.
37. Betty’s Beach – Lobster .
38. I’o – Strawberry Fields Forever.
39. Pacific’o – Kona Winds are a good thing here.
40. Buzz’s Wharf – Markea Prawns.
41. Beach Bums – BBQ.
42. Mr. Sub – Home of the only turkey avo sandwich I will eat.
43. Star Noodle – Singapore noodles and the crepe.
44. Outback – Great barbie, mate!
45. Melting Pot – Playing with your food here is fun.
46. Genki Sushi: Lahaina, Kihei- Sushi Fountain.
47. Izakaya Matsu – Heavy hitting Japanese bar food.
48. Stella Blues – Music and comfort food, its all here.
49. Three’s Bar and Grill – Raw Bar rocks!
50. Dog n Duck – Late night scooby snacks, daytime peas and potatoes with corned beef.
51. Fat Boy Burger – Burger options could blow your mind, new outdoor shade is a plus.
52. Mama’s Fish House – Private beach, amazing foodie food. Sashimi trio is a surprise to the taste buds, and everything else takes your breath away.
53. Milagro’s – Spinach, Salmon, Macadamia Nuts and Tupelo Honey. But don’t forget the Tequila.
54. Paia Fish Market – I wish I could stop getting the fish sandwiches and try something else already, but I’m hooked.
55. Charley’s – One of the only places I know where I can saunter through swinging saloon doors properly.
56. Cafe 808 – Cuz people in Kula need great food, too. Their menu is huge!
57. Humu, Grand Wailea – Fish for your own lobster, then eat it.
58. Wokstar – Comfort noodles served late.
59. Joy’s Place – Oasis of healthy food amid the fried masses of Kihei.
60. Pita Paradise: Kihei, Wailea – Greek!
61. Choice – Raw goodness and hot blonds get me going in the morning.
62. Capische? – Gnocci and wine.
63. 808 Bistro – BYOB yummy dinner.
64. Sarento’s – Steak, seafood and ocean views.
65. Lahaina Grill – If I had a last meal, it would be here.
66. Casanova – Italian decadence.
67. Bistro Casanova – Quak salad.
68. Ramen Ya – Gyoza and noodles.
69. Matteo’s – Quattro Stagioni.
70. Maui Bake Shop – Croque Monsieur .
71. Amigo’s – Tacos al pastor, burritos al pastor bring me back to the streets of Mexico.
72. Alexander’s – Grilled fish and veggies.
73. La Provence – The most difficult croissants for me to obtain on the island, but worth it.
74. 808 Deli – Paninis.
75. Main Street Bistro – Shrimp burgers and beet salad.
76. Grandma’s – Such an amazing little place in Kula.
77. Kihei Caffe – Breakfast in Kihei.
78. Cafe Des Amis – Earn your Euro street cred.
79. Sportspage – Dark and dank, just how I want my sports and suds.
80. Kahului Ale House – Spicy chicken wings and a draft beer.
81. Matsu – Big Japanese menu for small place.
82. Thai Cuisine – Time for Thai?
83. Mulligan’s on the Blue – Celtic Tigers, Guiness, Willie K and outstanding pub food.
84. Tribe – Just reinvented itself from Cafe Prana Nui, but same inspired dishes you don’t see anywhere else.
85. Moana Cafe – Lamb wrap, apple strudel.
86. Sam Sato’s- The wait is worth its weight in noodles.
87. Monkeypod Kitchen – Insane number of beer taps paired with Peter Merriman’s food. Also, they have pie.
Got a hot food scoop? Contact Jen Russo at 808-280-3286 or fax to 808-244-0446.