Side Orders • October 19, 2017

Merriman’s Kapalua is among the Top 10 U.S. Fine-Dining Restaurants on TripAdvisor and it’s been named an Ocean-Friendly Restaurant by Surfrider Foundation. RANDY JAY BRAUN photo

FOOD FOR THOUGHT . . . Not one, but two, Maui restaurants have made the Top 10 U.S. Fine-dining Establishments list in the recent TripAdvisor awards. Mama’s Fish House again held its ground as one of the nation’s Top 10, beating out the super spectacular Gary Danko in San Francisco — and Merriman’s Kapalua was hot on its heels.

In addition, owner-chef Peter Merriman also just received Surfrider Foundation’s Ocean-Friendly Restaurant certification for Merriman’s Kapalua, and he remains dedicated to his passion for the islands, its culture, land and community at his many Hawaii restaurants by eliminating plastics, styrofoam and using proper practices in his recycling programs.

Just last week, Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman opened at Whalers Village in Kaanapali as the third and newest in the chain owned by the chef under Handcrafted Restaurants with partner Bill Terry. Other Monkeypods are in Wailea Gateway and Ko Olina on Oahu.

Are you a Maui woman in the food, fine beverage and hospitality industry?

The organization Les Dames Escoffier International Hawaii will present an event in partnership with Chef Lee Anderson from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at Sugar Beach Events in Kihei.

Word has it that attendees will learn just what being a Dame is all about.

Nicky “Beans” Matichyn has been an expert of things “java” as owner of Maui Coffee Roasters for decades. On Saturday, he will turn 70, and on Sunday, the Pau Hana section of this newspaper will run a feature on his interesting life and how he got to the Valley Isle.

Ka’anapali Beach Hotel Executive Chef Tom Muromoto recently won Best Chef on Maui in this newspaper’s Best of Maui awards. He will once again appear to do the cuisine for Taste of Asian Blend on Nov. 4 at the King Kamehameha Club House in Waikapu. Jennifer Nguyen of A Saigon Cafe will also return to create her exotic Vietnamese dishes. New this year will be Star Noodle chef Abby Ferrer doing pork bao buns; Sushi Chef Quinton Yoza from Lava’s will do sushi specialties and Miko’s Cuisine will feature its house specialty of roasted chicken.

Mitch Hazama and a roster of top Maui musicians will get you dancing and Glenn Tamura, owner of Tamura’s Fine Wines & Liquors, will continue with his generous sponsorship of things liquid. You may email

By the way, Chef Muromoto recently just introduced some new and inspiring dishes at KBH’s Tiki Terrace open-air restaurant. Now, you may dive into his jumbo shrimp scampi, short ribs, prosciutto salad and mini poke bowls in addition to his Hawaiian laulau plates and other signature dishes that have made him “the best.”

Roadside vendors are popular the world over and that is why Hawaii Food & Wine Festival will present the Global Street Food affair Saturday at the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa in Kaanapali (see story on Page 17 of Maui Scene).

At the 20th annual Pumpkin Fest coming up Friday at Emmanuel Lutheran School in Kahului, you’ll find Three’s Food Truck, crafts, games, a photo booth, Maui Fresh Streatery truck, a silent auction, live music by Amy Hanaiali’i and Willie K and more island street food by Teppanyaki 2 Go and Simply Sweets.

Coming up Nov. 3 and 4 at Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Kahului will be the fourth annual Made In Maui County Festival. Four food trucks will be on hand Nov. 3. Then 13 will roll into the event Nov. 4. More than 140 product vendors will showcase goods both days.

Bring your appetites for French fare by Crepes D’Amour Maui, cool off with ice cream treats by Halo Halo, and sink your teeth into big, beefy masterpieces by Fatt Chicks Burgers.

Who remembers Bill Hendershot? I first met him when he owned the former Maui Sweet Baked Ham store.

“My family and I had a great three-course tasting dinner paired with wine last week at a restaurant in Paia,” Hendershot emails. “It’s NyloS on Baldwin Avenue. The food was great, and the chef, Jeremy Solyn, put on a fantastic dinner presentation. He’s very personable and down to earth, and makes the dinner a real showpiece. He and his wife and young family have an interesting background story.”

NyloS is backwards for Solyn, Jeremy’s last name. It’s open Wednesdays to Sundays for dinner with white tablecloths and French and Italian preparations — and word has it that this intimate eatery is right up there with the best on island.

* Got restaurant / dining-event scoop?

Call Dining Editor Carla Tracy at 242-6342; or email