The itching from the mosquito bites are starting to subside, and I haven’t had to put on the Hawai’i cocktail of sunscreen and bug repellant on, so I thought it would be good to do trip write up of some our new and old favorites!
Let’s start with Stephen’s morning routine. The first stop is always the wake up call, or proper caffination! He used to pack beans, a coffee grinder and a French press with us on trips, but found that it’s easier and more fun to explore the local craft coffee scene wherever we go. Cafe Cafe Maui was just the place to do that and get his daily flat white. This sweet cafe opens at 7am, even though the local rooster went off somewhere around 5:30am. It allowed time to slather on the sunscreen, do a bit of morning reading, and take a leisurely stroll.
Next stop was Baby Beach – known for its shallow and calm waters. It lived up to it’s name as we saw quite a few little ones wading into the water.
Another favorite, although not in the morning was to Ono Gelato Company – for a midday or nightcap after those warm Maui days to cool off! We went here our first trip to Maui and bought some Vintage Posters. Make a trip to the back of the store for some outdoor seating over the beach and water and watch the boats sail by.
Ululani’s Shaved Ice – also cooled us down during some midday sightseeing. The flavoring actually didn’t taste crazy artificial like some of the coloring would indicate! The gal helping us out suggested ice cream to go with it and I have yet to see Stephen turn down any ice cream. We went with ube (purple yam) was suggested with the shaved ice we chose and it was a winner! Sweet, tart, and creamy all at the same time! Yum!
Goin’ Left – Come in for the home brewed Kombucha and leave with all these things you didn’t know you needed. It was described to us as a camping, surfing, skating lifestyle shop, and the curation is just on point. Great smelling candles – yes. Camping and beach gear. Packable utensils, like a titanium spork anyone?! Thing you could use as food styling props like geode coasters, ceramics, and wooden utensils – yes. Seriously the most eclectic store I’ve seen in awhile. I wish there was one on the mainland near me!
If you’re a Top Chef fan, you may know Chef Sheldon Simeon who has been on more than one season. He’s totally sweet, humble, and badass in the kitchen. It’s a busy spot with lines out the door and friendly service once you get to the counter. Hubs got the Chef Sheldon special because he can’t say no to braised pork belly. I got the poke, which was super fresh with a generous portion of Poke over a bed of whichever tickles your fancy (rice, noodles, kale).
As a side note, we went to fellow Top Chef alumni Chef Leanne Wong’s brunch place Koko Head Cafe in Oahu and that was also a favorite! We loved it so much we went twice in a trip! Try their dumplings of the day! Stephen said those dumplings were his all time favorite!
Located in the Maui Tropical Plantation – we went here first when it was new a few years ago and had to go back! A lot of their food is sourced from the Plantation which also offers tours (Check times!), and has a little farm stand as well. Farm to fork type of offerings, but also had the only pate and bone marrow we saw on a menu here, so a bit more adventurous in their menu than other places on the island.
What is there to say about Mama’s Fish House that hasn’t already been said? The most down to earth fine dining experience you’ll have. Maybe this tip will help: Men should arrive wearing shirts with sleeves. Stephen was loaned a shirt when we first went here because he was wearing a sleeveless shirt and we were told there was a dress code. Whoops!
Their signature stuffed fish is amazing. Deserts and coffee were also just as delicious! There’s complimentary valet parking and it’s own beach front for photo opportunities!
I hope this was helpful in planning your own trip to Maui! Aloha!