If there is one thing I love to do, its travel. And who doesn’t like spending a week on a Hawaiian island, where the air is always warm, the sunsets never disappoint and the surf transports you.
But this time, I had a goal: to find the best fish tacos on the island. And on this mission I also discovered some great places to eat and drink… so here is my wine + food tour on Maui, ‘Donita’ style.
Gazebo Restaurant at Napili Shores by Outrigger
Whoa! Go hungry, get a few dishes and share. Pictured: Macadamia Nut pancakes, omelettes big enough for a family and the Fried Rice Plate – sweet and savoury. Expect to wait in line for up to or over an hour. A great view over the ocean, with shutter windows allowing the breeze in. To find it, park in the hotel parking lot, then walk towards the ocean.
Happy Hour – 2-5pm daily
One of the best patios overlooking the beach for all day sun and the best happy hour!
Great wine by the glass and cocktails and super delicious appetizers big enough for a meal.
Recommended: Gerard Bertrand Gris Blanc Rose, Zardetto Cuvee Prosecco, Poke Nachos, Lani Ribs, Crispy Kapalua Roll, *Calamari Taco, Maui Beach Balls and Romaine Wraps. Be hungry.
Leilani’s on the Beach Beachside Grill
Located on Ka’anapali Beach, it has a nice big open patio looking over the boardwalk and beach, open windows with a great breeze. Aloha Hour is from 3-5pm with live music Wed-Sun and the only thing I recommend you have is…
Mai Tai’s for $7 and their Fresh Fish ( grilled ) Tacos from the regular menu are worth it at a whopping $19!
*Voted the best fish taco I ate on Maui*
Located on the north side of the island in a quaint town called Paia, this casual eatery is the bomb! Seriously. I was in heaven. If I only had two stomachs 😉
I had my sights on just one thing… Mahi Mahi Fish Tacos and a cold Bikini Blonde Lager from the Maui Brewing Co.
*Voted the second best fish taco I ate on Maui*
A must on your next trip. Stop into the brewery for lunch on a hot Hawaiian day for some refreshing air conditioning
And try a flight of beers and enjoy their tasty menu. Happy Hour from 3-6pm everyday.
I enjoyed… a Beef Shortrib Taco (I know… it was a shocking departure from fish!) along with
a taste of Coconut Porter, Lahaina Brown Ale, Bursting Heart Saison and Mana Wheat Ale.
If you decide to see the sunrise at Haleakala Crater, then definitely take the time to explore the area.
The only winery on the island is Maui Wine at Ulupalakua Vineyards. A welcoming tasting room with some unique wines grown and produced on Maui.
I highly recommend tasting through their wines, they are truly unique.
I brought a bottle of the Hula O Maui home with me – a pineapple wine that offers a sparkling experience with crisp citrus and a balance of softness on the palate.
They didn’t have their Grenache ready to release yet, but I was really excited they were giving this a try – so definitely taste it.
And an absolute must sip is the Lokelani Sparkling Rose made from Pinot Noir and Chardonnay and done Traditional Methode Champenois style. You can find this in stores and by the glass around the island – its delicious!
While in the area, we stumbled upon this little café on the side of the road (Kula Highway) – called Grandma’s Coffee.
It’s quaint, frequented by locals and returning travellers, and there is a reason… it’s delicious! They have been growing, roasting and blending their own coffee since 1918, and I had one of the best Mocha‘s (I know you coffee drinkers are rolling your eyes at me, but that’s coffee to me!) I have ever sipped. Their food is prepared fresh and the baked good are made in-house daily.
I had a breakfast sandwich that was far from ordinary, and so was the speed in which I gobbled it down. And do not leave without a piece of their Pineapple Dream Cake, it will have you speechless.
If you blink you would pass it, as it’s right off the Honoapi’ilani Hwy connecting Lahaina to Kihei. We stopped in to pick up small pies to share with our Hawaiian crew.
Must buy and share… Banana Cream, Macnut Chocolate, Apple Crumb, Olowalu Lime and whatever local special they have.
Pi Artisan Pizza in Lahaina
When you are craving a little simplicity for your meal, try this casual pizzeria!
Traditional choices or order up the Seared Ahi Tataki Pizza with blanco sauce, local ahi, mozza cheese, ahi sausage, miso wasabi aioli, furikake and arugula.
Not your conventional sit down bistro, so instead you sit in your car and enjoy a plate of Spicy Pineapple Shrimp from the #1 food truck on the island! There was no line up on my 3rd and last attempt (third times a charm)!!
And don’t miss out on lunch or an evening out for dinner, drinks and live music at Fleetwood’s On Front St. (owned by Mic Fleetwood). A great view over the ocean and a cool place to be (upstairs, on the roof).
photo courtesy of Fleetwood’s on Front St.
Hope you enjoyed my food and wine tour on Maui. Aloha!