News and reviews of made on Maui products and Maui-based companies and success stories. Also featuring island shopping guides

Posts tagged ‘Best’

Dazoo Restaurant and Pau Vodka Serve up the Fun!

Dazoo Restaurant is Maui’s best kept secret for hand-crafted cocktails, but with bloggers like ‘EZdrinking’ discovering this Paia restaurant and spreading the word, the secret is soon to be out.

Dazoo is gaining attention for their creative cocktails using fresh squeezed, locally sourced juices and Maui made liquors. This month, they are launching Pau Vodka Night, on Wednesday, July 16, from 5-7pm.

On the third Wednesday of each month, Dazoo’s talented team of bartenders, lead by Jimmy Shoemaker, will create four new cocktails featuring Pau Vodka (crafted using Maui pineapples just up the road in Haliimaile) and other local ingredients.

Pau Vodka’s master distiller Mark Nigbur will also be at the event, to answer questions and entertain the crowds!

Dazoo cocktails, best, maui, vodka

Jimmy Shoemaker, Dazoo’s bartender, and Mark Nigbur, Pau Vodka’s master distiller, will be serving up great drinks and lots of laughs the third Wednesday of every month

I was invited to sample and photograph the cocktails (its a rough job, but someone has to do it!) to help promote the upcoming event, and all I can say is I’ve already made my reservations (and you should too!).

In July, the featured cocktails will be:

maui best cocktail pineapple vodka martini Plantation Fire

“Everything in this cocktail is either roasted, grilled, dried, or infused with heat in some way!”  

Pau Vodka, pickled pineapple with Hawaiian chili peppers by Maui Preserved, grilled oranges, roasted and creamed coconut (courtesy of the bakers at Moana Bakery), dried nutmeg

red rocker maui best cocktail vodkaRed Rocker

“Enjoy the flavors of the summer, just like you are back in Grandpa’s rocking chair” 

Pau Vodka, house made strawberry shrub, thai basil, lime juice, rhubarb bitters

 

 

Maui Best cocktail paia mauiDa Suzie Experience

“Suzie is a little bit sweet, a little tangy…” 

Pau Vodka, Lillet (a floral fortified wine), Cava sparkling wine, Upcountry grapefruit juice, lime juice, celery bitters

 

 

 

tao pau maui best cocktail Tao of Pau

“The path to relaxation” 

Pau Vodka, St. Germain, fresh blackberries, lemon juice, mint garnish

 

 

 

Will you be attending the event?  Take photographs of your favorite drink and post it on social media using #PauVodkaNight to enter to win special prizes!

 

Reservations are now available by phone 579-9999 or through opentable.com

 

Blogging Disclaimer: I am a paid spokesperson for Dazoo, but the opinions are my own! 

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Valentine’s Gift Suggestion #1- Awili Spa at Andaz

Let’s just say you have a lovely wife, with two kids, who could use a little pampering and quiet time.  I’m about to make your wife (and life) very happy.  Present her with a day at the Awili Spa at the new Andaz hotel in Wailea for Valentine’s Day.   From the friendly greeting by the complementary valet, to the dramatic, but simple entry and non-lobby lobby, your princess will feel like a real princess.  (I wish I had fancier words to describe how wonderful the Andaz is, but all I can say is this – just go.  Even to just walk around, grab a drink at the poolside Lehua Lounge during sunset, or enjoy a full meal at one of their several spectacular restaurants).

andaz maui wailea hotel spa

Entry to Heaven… The Andaz Maui at Wailea

sand floor zen rock garden maui hotel

An unexpected little room in the hotel ‘lobby’ – a zen garden with a sand floor!

Back to the Valentine’s gift – included with treatments at the spa is access to the sauna, steam room and hot tub in the spa area, snacks (which are worth staying for alone) in the spa’s lounges, and access to the adult-only tranquility pool.  I had the good fortune to be able to get a massage at the spa recently, and the whole experience is so magical, that while being shown around the spa area, my guests and I kept giggling at our disbelief that we could spend the whole day there… ( “we close at 8pm, so you can stay until 7:59” we were told with a smile, we giggled again).   The hot tub room (with steam room, sauna, and very well appointed showers and locker room) is just a really relaxing area on its own, I can only describe as modern and zen-like.  The massage was one of the best I’ve ever had.   The entrance to the spa is also a fun area, you are surrounded by hundreds of drawers of herbs and other magical ingredients for the apothecary consultants to brew up cures for whatever ails you.

Also in the entry/apothecary room is an unexpected boutique filled with designs from Maui’s top clothing and fashion designers, including clothing by Maggie Coulumbe and jewelry by Debbie Mack and Sophie Grace.  This spot is worth a stop just for the shopping.

Sadly, though we were not able to stay until 7:59 (due to one daddy staying at home with all four children) – we did have time to enjoy a delicious meal at the Lehua Lounge, with a stunning view of the humpbacks breaching in the ocean.  A momentous end to a thoroughly  relaxing day.

andaz maui valentines gift pool spa day

Next time, I will stay ALL day at this pool…

Maui’s Big Events for 2014

MAUI CALENDAR EVENTS 2014 BIG ACTIVITY

Maui has outstanding community events throughout the year – from golf tournaments that are fun to watch or fundraisers that are fun to eat (at).  If you are thinking of traveling to Maui in 2014, here are some events that you might want to consider planning a trip around.  (ok, it might be too late to make it here for the golf tournament, but I bet it will happen around the same time in 2015 as well…) And if you live here, some of these events are the ones you’ll want to start saving your pennies for…

UPDATE APRIL 29  – I’ve gone ahead and DELETED the events that have already taken place – and if you are planning to come in 2015, I’m already starting to put together that calendar soon!

Please note: If you know of other can’t-miss events, please add a comment below with a website for consideration.  Some events happening in the latter part of the year may not have confirmed dates yet.  Will keep this up to date as possible.  All events subject to change/cancellation. 

May 2014 

  • Date: Saturday, May 3
  • Event: Maui Onion Festival
  • Location: Whaler’s Village
  • Admission: Free
  • Chef Demonstrations, Games and Prizes, Recipe Contests, Live Entertainment, Food Booths 
  • Website: http://www.whalersvillage.com/onionfestival.htm
  • Date: Saturday, May 10
  • Event: Seabury Hall Craft Fair- a fundraiser for the scholarship programs
  • Location: Makawao (Upcountry)
  • Admission: $5 (12 and under free)
  • The juried Craft Fair features more than 100 local artisans, live entertainment, great food, live and silent auctions, activities for kids, rummage and plant sales and more
  • Website: http://www.seaburyhall.org/page.cfm?p=981

June 2014 

July 2014

  • July – event dates to be determined (check back for updates)
  • Event: 56th Annual 4th of July Rodeo and Parade
  • Location: Makawao

August 2014 

  • Date: TBD
  • Event: Miss Saigon 
  • Location: Maui Arts and Cultural Center
  • The famed Broadway play, coming to Maui, under the same direction as last year’s memorable Les Mis
  • Website: http://www.mauiacademy.org
  • Date: Friday, August 8
  • Event: Maui Calls-  a fundraiser for Maui Arts and Cultural Center
  • Location: Maui Arts and Cultural Center
  • Food Booths from some of Maui’s best restaurants, wines from wineries around the world, live entertainment, dancing, live and silent auction and more. 
  • Website: http://www.mauiarts.org/ShowCalendars.html?Year=2014&Month=08

September 2014

October 2014

  • Date: October 2-5
  • Event: Maui Fair
  • Location: Fairgrounds, Wailuku
  • A County Fair with the requisite food, carnival rides, games, animals and more food. 
  • Website: http://mauifair.com/2013/

November 2014

  • Date: Saturday, November 1
  • Event: Noble Chef- a fundraiser for the Maui Culinary Academy
  • Location: TBD
  • An elegant affair with celebrity chefs mentoring the culinary students, with auctions, entertainment and an always impressive dessert display.  Did I mention the dessert?  
  • Website: http://noblechef.maui.hawaii.edu
  • Date: November 7 & 8
  • Event: Made in Maui County Festival- First Ever!
  • Location: Maui Arts and Cultural Center
  • Made in Maui arts, foods, produce, crafts, jewelry, gifts, collectibles and more.  Features an invitation-only preview for retailers on Friday, and an open to the public event, including food trucks, restaurants etc !
  • Website: http://www.madeinmauicountyfestival.com

December 2014

  • Date: Saturday, December 6
  • Event: Haleakala Waldorf Holiday Faire
  • Location: Haleakala Waldorf School, Kula
  • Festive crafts, silent auction, food, kids activities, live entertainment and more 
  • Website: http://www.waldorfmaui.org

Eat like a local with Tour Da Food

When it comes to vacations, there are three kinds of people.  Some people go on vacation to relax, some like to explore, and some people just want to eat.  Fortunately for people that come to Maui, with a fascinating history of global cuisines and an abundance of fresh fruit, fish and other foods, Maui’s culinary options will keep your palate happy for the entire length of your stay.   And you haven’t really been to Maui without sampling a plate lunch, enjoying fresh poke, and you really can’t miss our famous shave ice.  With all the options, won’t you feel better knowing you’ve had the best?

Maui's Best Local Food Tour Activity

The Plate Lunch – The Signature Local Food in Hawaii –

If you are one of those foodie travelers, you’re second call after booking your flight should be to Bonnie Friedman.  A serious foodie herself, Bonnie established Tour Da Food in 2008 as the island’s first food tour and the only tour that focuses solely on ‘local food’.

Bonnie currently offers four tours – ‘Wailuku’, ‘Upcountry’, ‘Noodles, Dumplings & Dim Sum’ and perhaps Maui’s most unique tour, ‘GAS-tronomy’, a tour of four of Maui’s best local foods found in gas stations.  Every tour includes transportation from and back to the central meeting place; all food; a goodie bag; and a list of additional off-the-radar eating places.    And for foodies who would rather go it alone, Bonnie can provide a personalized list of recommendations through her website at Cuisine Confidential.

Eat Maui Local Food Guide

Explore Maui’s ‘hidden’ food treasures with Tour Da Food

Bonnie has built close personal and professional relationships with Maui’s chefs, farmers and food producers during her decades spent in various careers on Maui. She is herself a certified Pastry Cook, and has co-authored two cookbooks for Ten Speed Press.

Having just returned from her own foodie trip to Italy (which we jealously observed via Facebook!), she answered some of our questions about her unique activity :

maui's best shave ice tour

Shave Ice Caps off Each Tour

Made Made: How did you come up with this idea? 

Bonnie Friedman: I have to give credit to my friend/colleague Keli’i Brown, the PR director of the Maui Visitors & Convention Bureau. He took a food tour of Chinatown in NYC in the mid-2000s. When he came back to Maui, he told me about it – VERY excitedly! – and said “You need to do this in Wailuku.” It took quite a while – about 18 months – to do all the research and plot out what I considered to be an excellent local food tour. I launched Tour da Food Maui in May 2008.

MM: What’s your most popular tour? 

BF: I think Wailuku is still probably the most popular tour with Upcountry a close second.

MM: Any favorite moments or experiences?   

BF:  For me, the best moments are connecting with visitors, especially first time visitors, and introducing them to real local food. And they all really seem to love the experience. Most rewarding is when my guests and I become friends. It’s happened several times. There’s a family I see every year when they visit Maui and a couple I have at least one meal with in NYC when I travel there.

 

Maui's Best Manapua...

There’s nothing like a Manapua – It’s worth the trip to Maui just in itself…

MM: Anything else you want to add? 

BF: A few words of my “local food philosophy” – we have some excellent fine dining in Hawai’i, no doubt about it. But for me, the one thing we have here that no other place in the world has is local food. I think we learn a great deal about a place and its culture through its food. That’s the experience I hope I give my guests.

Mahalo to Bonnie for making us hungry answering our questions, and don’t forget to check out her tour options on your next visit to Maui!

Noble Chef 2013 – A Fantastic Foodie Fundraiser

noble chef ocean vodka maui wailea

There are a lot of great foodie events on Maui, and even more fundraising events.  And I mean the kind of events that visitors plan their trip to Maui around, or save their ‘dining out’ budget for the year to attend.  But in terms of really memorable food, this event really takes the cake  ballroom-sized dessert bar.  (ok, the year I attended their was a dessert bar the width of the entire ballroom)

This year’s Noble Chef takes place on Saturday, October 26 at the Fairmont Kea Lani in Wailea.   The event serves as the largest annual fundraiser for the Maui Culinary Academy, part of the UH Maui College.

(Photos are from the 2012 Noble Chef, by photographer Peter Liu of Kaiscapes )

The Noble Chef features a mentorship program that pairs a culinary student with one of Maui’s celebrity chefs (and luckily, we have a lot).

photo 2012 noble chef by peter liu

Noble Chef 2012

This year’s event, which carries the theme of “The World on a Plate”, will begin with a celebrity chef-designed reception menu spanning the culinary “hot spots” of the world, including Japan, Vietnam, Morocco, Spain, Great Britain, India, Greece, New Zealand, and Mexico.

After the reception, guests will sit down for a multi-course gourmet French dinner and dessert prepared by MCA’s faculty chefs.

noble chef 2012 photo peter liu

An elegant display at last year’s Noble Chef

Wine and spirits throughout the evening are provided by Young’s Market Company of Hawai‘i, Ocean Vodka, and Maui Brewing Company.

ocean vodka noble chef

Ocean Vodka will make another appearance in 2013!

In addition to preparing the evening’s meals together, the celebrity chefs and the students they mentor spend several days together beforehand in an intimate learning exchange, providing invaluable hands-on experience for MCA students. This year’s celebrity “noble chefs” are:

MCA faculty chefs include Jake Belmonte, Tom Lelli, Craig Omori, Jeff Scheer, Theresa Shurilla and Christina Pafford.

The 2013 Noble Chef (the 17th annual!) is presented in partnership with the Fairmont Kea Lani Maui and Youngs Market Company of Hawai‘i.

The event begins with a VIP reception at 5pm, followed by a full reception at 6pm, and an elegant gourmet dinner with entertainment and auction at 7pm. Tickets are $250 for preferred seating and $185 for general seating. Table sponsorships begin at $3,000.

For more information about The Noble Chef event, visit: http://noblechef.maui.hawaii.edu

To learn about the Maui Culinary Academy, visit http://www.mauiculinary.com

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