Maui is an incredibly beautiful island paradise. Its gentleness embraces you the moment you step off the plane and onto its golden shores, as if to say, "Everything will be fine." However, Maui is more than just turquoise waters and sandy beaches. It is home to a plethora of fine restaurants and dining establishments. Here are my top restaurant recommendations for Maui, whether you're traveling with kids, friends, or a significant other. To know about gazebo dhaba & family restaurant menu, click here
1) Lahaina's Mala Ocean Tavern.
Chef Mark Ellman, one of the founders of Hawaiian Regional Cuisine, owns and operates this restaurant. It is located on Front Street in Lahaina, right on the water's edge near Mala Wharf. Mala Ocean Tavern offers a wide variety of tapas, seafood, and vegetarian options. Small plates, organic whenever possible, whole grains, no preservatives, no hydrogenated oils, and everything in proportion, according to the menu. When my partner and I visit Maui, we dine here on a regular basis. The restaurant has a lovely relaxed atmosphere, the menu is reasonably priced for the quality of the food, and I recommend booking ahead of time for a table on the verandah with a view of the water rather than inside. Mala becomes very full as a result of Mark Ellman's "foodie" following. This is an excellent choice for a romantic dinner for two.
2) Sansei at the Kapalua Resort.
My dining companion and I had such a good time at this restaurant that we returned to Sansei Restaurant in Honolulu. Sansei, owned by Chef Dave Kodama, a third generation Japanese American, was named one of America's eight best sushi restaurants by Travel & Leisure in 2001 and won the Hale'Aina Gold Award in 2006. When we arrived, Sansei was "jumping," and after tasting our meals, we understood why. The dishes were both inventive and incredibly delicious. Booking ahead of time is essential to avoid disappointment. "Dress casually, bring a smile, relax, and enjoy the adventure of dining," says Sansei. I wish all great restaurants were as unpretentious as this one. This is an excellent restaurant for a group of friends.
3) Lahaina Grill, located on Lahainaluna Road in Lahaina.
Lahaina Grill is the place to go if you want to "splash out" for a special occasion. For the past 16 years, it has been voted the best restaurant on Maui, and the accolades are well deserved. We had a fantastic dinner on our most recent trip to Maui. Our dishes were delicious and beautifully executed. When it comes to selecting, the staff is knowledgeable about the menu and wine list and is friendly and unpretentious. Bookings are required because it does fill up quickly. Appetizers range from $19 to $22, and main courses range from $36 to $52. You'll also need to dress up a little more, but the experience will be well worth it.
4) Lahaina's Penne Pasta Cafe.
This is another of Mark Ellman's restaurants, located on Dickenson Street in Lahaina (just off Front Street). It is a family-style restaurant that serves Southern-style Italian food inspired by Mark's Italian grandmother, Rosalind. Every bread, sauce, and pasta is made from scratch. There are 15 pasta dishes alone, as well as salads, sandwiches, and a kids menu. Dining "al fresco" rounds out the experience. Who says you have to sacrifice atmosphere and setting when dining with children?
5) Lahaina's Kimo's Restaurant.
Kimo's is located on Front Street in Lahaina and is part of the "T's Restaurant" chain. Because it is located on the water, the setting is especially beautiful and popular at sunset. This restaurant also has some excellent seafood options. My dining companion and I ordered broiled fish on a bed of garden greens, which was delicious. The fish was moist and succulent without being overcooked. Burgers, prime ribs, steaks, and sandwiches are also available. We had lunch here twice and both times we enjoyed it. This is an excellent family restaurant. The prices are reasonable, and the service is relaxed and attentive.
6) The Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.
This is a cute place on Front Street, Lahaina, which recreates the 50's American charm of "Forrest Gump". It's fun and casual, with some fantastic seafood options, as well as burgers and desserts. One day, my partner and I ordered Mahi-mahi (fish) on wild rice with a salad for lunch, and it was moist, fresh, and delicious. This is a fantastic family restaurant that is reasonably priced and offers a wide range of dishes to suit all tastes.
7) Lahaina's Livewire Cafe.
Great coffee is difficult to come by on Maui, so finding an unpretentious place like Livewire that serves great coffee, a true "Chai Latte," and a selection of "home made" delicacies was like "striking gold," so much so that we returned every day for our daily fix. Livewire also provides internet access, but we were only interested in the coffee.
Maui has a plethora of fresh produce from its abundant land and waters to offer its diners, leaving them spoilt for choice.