by Tania Harmon
One of my favorite new spots to eat and drink in South Maui is Shearwater Tavern. Located in the Azeka Shopping Center Mauka Side, Shearwater occupies the back corner spot where the right half of Stella Blues used to sit.
For years, Stella Blues was my favorite spot for a Pau Hana and pupus. They had a great casual atmosphere, but you could go in there after an event dressed to the nines (the nines on Maui that is) and not feel out of place. They had a huge selection of pupus – emphasis on selection – and the best bar staff around. I was sad to see Stella’s close and have been anxiously waiting for 3 long years for a place to fill the void. Not any place would do.
Enter Shearwater Tavern. When I heard that Chef and Restaurateur DK Kodama (of Sansei fame) was opening a new gastro pub in the old Stella’s location I jumped on their Instagram feed and stalked their posts daily as they prepared to open. In fact I think I may have been their first follower. The concept promised to be a ‘fun, casual neighborhood gathering place to share great food and drinks’, sourced form local Maui farmers, ranchers and fishermen. Local first, organic and sustainable when possible, this place would be right up my alley.
Since they opened in December last year, it has become my new favorite place to grab a cocktail and pupu (or four). I’m a big pupu girl. I could make a meal of pupus and often do. I prefer to order a large selection for the table and graze family style. They offer daily Happy Hour specials from 5 to 6 pm and late night Fridays and Saturdays from 10 pm to midnight with $2 off draft beers and signature craft cocktails, plus 50% off appetizers and veggies. Veggies you ask skeptically? Yes, veggies! These are not the veggies you grew up eating. Their veggie dishes are my favorite dishes on the menu.
My Favorite Eats
CRISPY BRUSSEL SPROUTS – Pickled Jalapenos, Konbu Aioli, Parmesan Cheese, Diced Granny Smith Apples – This is the dish that we always have order multiples of because it is everyone’s favorite.
ROASTED MOROCCAN SPICED BABY CARROTS & BEETS – Cumin Infused Aioli, Pine Nuts, Goat Cheese, Pickled Radishes – Another crowd favorite, but it was gone before I could take a picture.
GRILLED ASPARAGUS MILANESE – Sunny-Side Up Egg, Parmesan Cheese, White Truffle Oil, Toasted Breadcrumbs
And from their ‘Starters’ menu:
CALAMARI – with a Pepperoncini Balsalmic Aioli
ROASTED PORK BELLY BUN – Slow Roasted, Kimchee Pickles, Pork Belly, Hoisin
KING’S NATURAL NEW YORK STRIP STEAK – with Organic Tatsoi Leaves, Roasted Tomatoes, Fingerling Potatoes, Demi Sauce.
I am a rare steak kinda gal. And most restaurants cook rare a little too much for my liking, but this one was perfectly rare. So ono!
And the drinks. . .
THE MELTING POT – Cazadores Reposado Tequila, Gran Classico, Passion Fruit Puree, House Made Sweet and Sour, Clementine, Cilantro and a Hawaiian Chili Pepper Sea Salt Rim
The Hawaiian Chili Pepper Sea Salt was the best part. I wanted a side of it to keep dipping my finger in, but I resisted asking.
And no pub experience would be complete without a flight of beer. They offer a great selection of local and mainland craft beers with a 4-beer flight for just $10.
Shearwater Tavern is located at 1279 South Kīhei Rd (Azeka Mauka Shopping Center), Kīhei. To learn more, call 808-793-2324 or visit the Shearwater’s website.
by Tania Harmon
Photo Credit: Maui Craft Tours
Craft Beverages. Craft Beer. Craft Spirits. Have you ever wondered what makes a beverage ‘craft’? Often, when we hear the word craft we think in terms of what it is not: large, mass-produced, corporate. Yet some define craft in terms of what it is: independent, small production, using time-honored and traditional methods. However you define it, there is no mistaking the fact that the craft beverage category is what’s hot and has created not only a following, but a culture of it’s own. Maui is no stranger to this growing phenomenon. Home to multiple breweries, distilleries and a winery, Maui’s craft beverage culture is one of its best kept secrets.
Inspired by a desire to share the stories of local Maui purveyors and their relationships with agriculture, their craft and the local culinary culture, husband and wife team David and Carrie Adelmann, created Maui Craft Tours, the ultimate way to experience the craft food and beverage culture on Maui. Maui Craft Tours’ carefully curated day trips pair guests in small groups (no more than 13 guests per tour) with expert guides on a memorable journey through Maui’s craft culture scene. All-inclusive excursions include: behind-the-scenes, exclusive, brewery, distillery and winery tours; beer, wine and spirit tastings; farm-to-table, locally-crafted eats and the best part – someone else is driving! Guests are offered a unique opportunity to meet a few of the local artisans who have pioneered Maui’s craft culture – Maui Wine, Maui Brewing Co., Hawaii Sea Spirits, Hali’imaile Distilling, The Mill House, Surfing Goat Dairy and Maui Gold Pineapple.
Photo Credit: Maui Pineapple Tours
All tours begin in Central Maui at Maui Tropical Plantation (as all days should) with a cup of The Mill House Roasting Café’s 100% Maui Grown Coffee fresh roasted by experienced hands. Also included with every tour: transportation to all destination sites; guided tours, tastings and gratuities for partner tour guides at each destination; a locally sourced, handcrafted lunch; Maui Craft Tours souvenir travel cup and tote bag. Maui Craft Tours currently offers 2 different tour options ranging from 6-7 hours in length with 2 more in the works scheduled to start late Spring 2017.
TASTE OF MAUI (6 hours) $189
A 30-minute tour providing an up-close glimpse of the Kihei brew house, cellar and packaging line, followed by a guided tasting of their flagship beers and souvenir gift to keep.
Photo Credit: Miles Kreisberg
A farm-to-table handmade lunch and tasting of their flagship goat cheeses
An in-depth look at the company’s Lower Kula organic farm, sustainable farming and distilling practices, bottling center, a tasting in the adjacent Martini Garden plus a visit to the gift shop to pick up your souvenir shot glass!
An exclusive look at grape growing and winemaking in Upcountry Maui with a walk through the historical winery grounds and cellar followed by a taste of some of MauiWine’s lovingly crafted wines in their tasting room, located in the iconic King’s Cottage.
ISLAND CRAFT ADVENTURE (7 hours) $269
Expanding on THE TASTE OF MAUI Tour this tour also offers
THE MILLHOUSE COFFEE ROASTING CO.
A private coffee seminar and pour-over tutorial hosted by this innovative team of coffee connoisseurs at The Mill House Coffee Roasting Company
SURFING GOAT DAIRY
Following lunch, a private tour of the Kula dairy from one of the farm’s expert tour guides where guests will meet and feed the happy goats and experience a taste of what it takes to raise these adorable animals, collect the milk and produce these lovingly-crafted, artisanal cheeses.
After the tour, guests participate in an intimate and casual tasting in the historic “Old Jail” where they are expertly guided through a selection of MauiWine’s small-production, single-varietal Ulupalakua Vineyards Estate Wines; including unreleased or back vintages.
THE ULTIMATE CRAFT ADVENTURE (8 hours)
A culinary dream day! The day starts with an exclusive coffee tour and tasting followed by in depth behind-the-scenes production tours expertly guided tastings at MauiWine, Ocean Vodka (Sundays) or Hali’imaile Distilling (Tuesdays) and Maui Brewing Co. Midway through the day, pause for a private family-style farm-to-table lunch in the heart of the beautiful winery grounds. For the Grand Finale, return to Maui Tropical Plantation where the team at The Mill House treats you to hand-selected pairings that perfectly represent their passion for all things craft.
FIELD TO GLASS (8.5 hours)
An opportunity to learn about the pineapple: the quintessential island fruit, its history on Maui, and how three local purveyors are using its unique juice. Follow the pineapple’s journey from the Hali’imaile Pineapple fields to MauiWine, Hali’imaile Distilling, and Maui Brewing Co. Along the way, learn how each of these artisans is turning pineapple in to unique island-inspired craft beverages. Guests enjoy a midday locally sourced lunch at the famous Hali’imaile General Store. Finally, reminisce on the day’s adventures over handcrafted drinks and pupus by The Mill House—a truly innovative farm-to-table dining experience. Delicious craft food and beverages fill this unforgettable full-day craft adventure!
All guests must be 21+ years of age to participate in tours. Private tours and gift cards available. Tours may also be upgraded to door-to-door service for an additional fee.
For more information email email@example.com or call 808.633.1801. Reservations can be made at www.mauicrafttours.com.