Sunday, January 17, 2010
Aloha Hawaiian Barbecue - part 1
I was going to write this as a daily series of each barbecue joint, but as internet service is very limited, I'll post what I can now. Cross your fingers I'm able to finish.
We started out in the super touristy area of Kaanapali, but are now in the more remote area of Hana. This is more our style. Still, we ate some tasty pig getting here.
I was surprised, then, by how good the pulled pork hash was at breakfast. Big tender pieces of lightly smoked smoked pork mixed with potatoes and onions. It was best early, but mighty good. The other thing "most Hawaiian" was their nightly luau. The musicians and dancers were excellent and genuinely loved what they did.
We headed to Lahaina to see some whales (and boy did we!) and to lunch at a place we'd read good things about, the Aloha Mixed Plate. It did the reviews justice - generous portions, affordable, and tasty. Eric tried the Kalbi Beef Short Ribs and I ordered the Hawaiian Plate. His ribs were classic Korean barbecue that has greatly influenced Hawaiian barbecue. In fact they seem to have three types of barbecue here - kalbi marinated then grilled meats, slow cooked pork, and mainland 'cue.
That day we went out on a whale-watching tour and got mugged by two humpback whales. That means THEY came closer than 100 feet, the closest boats can approach them. Our two humpbacks sidled up within FIVE FEET of the boat! Thousands of humpbacks come to the warm waters of Hawaii to mate and give birth. They don't eat a bit of food during their visit. It's hard to think of a creature the size of a school bus not eating anything for months. We sure couldn't do that!
We didn't stay in Lahaina, but headed toward Kihei. There we tried another great offering in Hawaii - sushi. Sansei Sushi was packed to the gills with hungry locals and tourists. I think our waitress was a little shocked by just how much we ordered, and by the fact that our one and four year olds both put away the eel like it was candy. Though Kihei looked like a great town, we decided to head a day early to the more laid back lodgings in Hana. I'll post about that next. Until then, Aloha!
Aloha Hawaiian Barbecue part 2: A trail of pork along the road to Hana.