Sunday, March 11, 2012

Eating options

in Hawai'i. When we travel we like to eat where the locals eat. On our recent vacation to Lahaina and Kona we found a couple of gems. When we arrived on our first night we did the usual touristy things. We walked down the main drag and ate at a waterfront restaurant but these are places where vistors like us are directed. You seldom see locals in these places.

At our first opportunity, we asked a few locals where the good places were and they muttered something and we were not sure what they said but pointed south of town. We thought they meant south of the tourist strip. We walked up and down and back and forth but couldn't find the place. Then the next morning we drove our rental car further than walking distance and came across a delightful outdoor restaurant, on the beach

Aloha Mixed Grill, Lahaina, Maui

It was here, for breakfast that we finally had a chance to experience local cuisine prepared by award winning chefs. Mrs Skoot had the Loco Moco which are two hambuger steaks covered with over easy eggs and covered in gravy. They also serve their version of Hawai'ian fried rice which has a mixture of BBQ pork, spam or bologna, and chinese sausage. It tastes better than it sounds. I had the Nalu omlete; shrimp, tomato, spinach, onion and cheese. It was all very delicious

One day after driving all day, all around the Island of Maui we ended up in Kihei, a resort area with sand beaches about 16 miles south of Lahaina.


On our way to Big Beach, near the end of the road we passed by some people BBQing in a parking lot by the side of the road. We didn't stop but made a mental note to stop on the way back, and a couple of hours later we managed to get there "just in time"


I've never seen chicken BBQ'd this way before. They butterflied the chicken and had racks to BBQ them flattened. These racks rotated on a special trailer designed for this, and we were lucky to grab the last chicken. There were already people waiting in line.


The chickens were $10.00 each and we took ours back to our hotel in Lahaina and devoured it while sitting on our lanai (balcony). This was our first introduction to "HULI HULI" chicken, which is an Hawai'ian institution.

We left Maui and ended up in Kona where we asked the shuttle driver where to eat, and he mentioned a few places, one of which was BITE ME Fish Market


We didn't know where it was, but we eventually found it north of Kalua and south of the Airport. It wasn't a great day and we were staying close to town and it was inbetween lunch and dinner, but we thought perhaps we should go there to have a snack


It is a small place nestled in the harbour amongst the charter boats. They also do fishing charters which is how they started the business, only serving locally caught fish. It was luck that we arrived between 3:00 and 5:00 pm as they have happy hour every day.


I can't remember now, but we had the "sampler plate" which was an appetizer, fresh fish of the day, their special fish salsa. I think the catch of the day was Marlin. Fish taco combos were regularly $9.95 but during happy hour, the tacos were only $2.50 each which were filled with Marlin (catch of the day)


Our server told us that the Happy Hour tacos were "full size" , the same as they serve on the regular menu. The tacos were so inexpensive we came back again the next day where we had Sailfish


  1. Good find Bob, the best food is always the food the tourists dot know about! Wouldnt mind trying that fish place, what great value.

    1. Roger:

      we try to stay away from large chains. We try to search out places where the locals go. we ask at the desk, we ask people on the street, at the gas station, everywhere . . . We seldom visit places more than once, as we like to sample more places, but during this trip we went to both places TWICE, because we liked them so much

  2. Some how you always manage to find the good eats.

    1. Trobairitz:

      I thought of you when I had my omlette, Shrimps are Vegan, aren't they ? We have no problems searching out where the locals eat

  3. Loco moco, one of my favorite dishes (comfort food) and I've discovered that there are other variations of the dish. The Seattle Airport has a place that makes a pretty good version of the dish that I frequently pick up when passing through. The salsa looks good and I haven't had marlin tacos since my bicycle trip to Mexico. Good food finds!

    1. Richard:

      evidently, Seattle has an authentic Hawai'ian eatery, somewhere. We will try to look for it when we go down there. When we went to Maui we even saw a Zippy's, so we just had to stop and go inside. It is sort of an Hawai'ian fast food McDonalds, except much healthier

  4. You are definitely a food finder. I shouldn't have visited at noon, now I am hungry for huli huli.

    1. SonjaM:

      Huli Huli means rotating, like a Hula Hoop. I updated the blog to include a link to a neat Huli Huli Video. We heard that song over there and it is kinda catchy. Actually I can hear it playing in my mind now, it is not easy to get rid of

  5. Absolutely - ask a local! I'm hungry.

    1. VS Lady:

      we always ask the gas station attendant, other bikers, basically anyone approachable. Sometimes we stumble across places by looking at the parked cars, and look inside at the "crowd". Many times the Hotels suggest, but these are business referrals, not necessarily the best places to eat

  6. Trying new types of food is one of my favorite things especially when traveling. I was just in Puerto Vallarta Mexico and walked around for 2 hours looking for a hole in the wall taco shack! That food looks so good I wish you brought some back for me to try!

    1. GLantern:

      I have never been to Mexico, and with all the violence to Canadians down there, our Gov't has issued travel advisories NOT to go there, but we do frequent Mexican eateries while travelling. Down in Southern WA they have this Food Trucks and we stop all the time for Tacos. Good, cheap and you eat outside on a picnic table

      thanks for visiting