I meant to post about all whole trip this week but I was buried in email from last week and sick for a couple of days. I don’t have all our pictures as they are on a different computer but what I do have are the food ones. That will do right?
We decided to do Maui on the cheap as Hawaii is expensive and we have a few pricy house projects coming up (barn door anyone?). We went with a condo rental instead of a hotel where we could have the option of self catering our meals. Our Studio Condo with King bed at Napili Village was $119 a night plus tax. We got a $10 discount for arranging our rental car through them. I did a bunch of cost comparisons and even with naming my own price via Priceline I couldn’t get a better deal on hotel, car or a combo of the two. We really liked our condo. It had everything we needed and even came with beach chairs and boogie boards. We had a lanai (deck) with a view of the pool and the beach was less than a minute walk from our front door.
If you are self catering, the two things we’d suggest are hitting up Costco in Kahului (you can buy Mai Tai mix there) and if you arrive on Friday or Saturday morning, going to the Maui Swap Meet in Kahului on Saturday. They have great souvenirs but more than anything, they have the best and cheapest Maui grown produce we saw on the island. The Hawaiian avocados are some of the best I’ve had in years. So buttery and sweet.
We brought baggies of spices from home so we could cook in the evenings. We decided we’d cook most of our breakfasts and dinners and then have lunch out.
We had A LOT of great food but these are our 3 favorites.
Breakfast, lunch or spam musubi at Honolua Store at the ABC near the Ritz Carlton. This place was reasonable priced and it was the best plate lunch we had on the island. The breakfast was to die for too. Micah has the island breakfast staple of Loco Moco which is a fried egg or two and a hamburger patty topped with local gravy (made with soy sauce) over plain or fried rice. I know, it sounds like a heart attack in a bowl but it’s good. I’ve never actually ordered it myself but I’ve had a bite or two of Micah’s in the past.
I tried a couple of things like fried rice with roast pork (YUM!) and spam musubi. I know spam is an acquired taste (or lack thereof) but it was a staple in my house growing up (It’s big in Asia), so I like the occasional slice. They also have really good mac salad
A big thing in Hawaii is Shave Ice. I thought it would either be like Halo-halo, a Filipino shaved iced dessert or a snow cone but it was more a combo of the two. The shave ice has the consistency of snow ball – really fluffy and light like Halo-halo. Then they pour syrup on top like a snow cone. The syrup flavors are so much better though. Not crazy artificial tasting or too sweet. We went to Ulu Lanis which was voted the best shaved ice on Maui. It was amazing.
Micah went with the Local Motion which is a combo of pineapple, mango and Li Hing Mui (made from a salty dried plum powder). I went with the Haleakala which is coconut and leche topped with sweetened condensed cream & cream mix. SO good and the perfect thing on a hot day on the beach.
Micah (who has had shaved ice before) said the best thing about Ulu Lanis is that the syrups are a better quality than what he’s had before and that the poked holes in the ice so the syrup would flow through to the bottom. Plus, the folks who work there are super nice.
Our 3rd favorite was also a dessert – probably the best cream puff I’ve ever had. We stopped at T. Komoda Store & Bakery in Makawao on the way back from Haleakala National Park. I was feeling a little nauseous from the altitude sickness and Micah thought a sweet treat would help. This bakery has been around since 1916, still family owned and is a local favorite. We purchased 2 cream puffs and I added a guava filled malasada (portugese sugar doughnut) for myself. I don’t really like doughnuts but I remember loving guava filled malasadas as a kid. This cream puff was light and airy and the filling was more like a pudding than a cream but it wasn’t runny.
I didn’t get a picture of the malasada (I ate it too fast at the airport) but this one was 100 times better than I remembered. Not too sugary and the guava filling was the perfect balance of sweet and slightly tart.
We had other really great meals but the food from these three places were the best. I wish I had a malasada right now. I’d even take a plain one.