My favorite element about traveling is indulging in the culinary delights of my destination. I had made a mental note of all the delicious food I was going to grub on while in Maui and all it took was stepping off the plane to begin my journey. Loco Moco was what I had on my brain but I landed around midnight and unfortunately most everything closes on the island around 9pm. Fried chicken and macaroni salad at the local Minit Stop (home of the Maui fried chicken) it was. No complaints about that! Unfortunately I was so ravaged, I didn’t take any photos of that adventure. I was a hot mess after that flight, believe you me.
When I woke up the next morning I informed my sister exactly of my Loco Moco desires and she knew exactly where to take me: Da Kitchen, where they “strive to take the traditional ‘plate lunch’ to the next level by offering big portions of traditional Hawaiian cuisine.” Loco Moco is a savory grilled burger topped with two eggs, onions, mushrooms and gravy, typically served with two scoops of rice and mac/potato combo salad. I learned that the traditional Hawaiian way of making macaroni salad is to included potato into the mix, calling it “potato mac” – learning these types of things brings me such joy!
Before that delicious plate (see below) came out, my sister and I decided we’d start our meal with Panko crusted Spam Masubi, which is spam and rice wrapped in seaweed. It was absolutely delicious and if you don’t see it in that photo (see above), I just don’t know what to tell you. My biggest tip for those of you traveling to any island in Hawaii is this, if you’re going to be there, you need try some traditional meals. For those of you who love meat over rice, this shouldn’t be a stretch. Live a little, experience culture to its fullest!
My sister ordered a classic Chicken Katsu, chicken breaded in Panko batter and served with special Japanese BBQ sauce. I am a firm believer that Panko bread crumbs makes everything better, and when combined with juicy chicken you might as well consider it paradise in your mouth. Though I was completely submerging myself in my Loco Moco, I had a chance to try the Katsu and it was one of the best I have ever had.
The only bummer about eating such great food on vacation is that when you get back to the mainland the quest to find something remotely similar is quite the challenge!
2439 South Kihei Road #107A