Side Orders • May 10, 2018

Taco Style Maui owners Priscila and Michael Smythe opened a colorful Costa Rican / Hawaiian taco shack in a courtyard off of Vineyard Street in Wailuku about six weeks ago. The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo

AROUND THE TOWN . . . Where will savvy Mauians go to buy last-minute gifts for Mom? The annual Seabury Hall Craft Fair in Makawao from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, of course. It always falls on the day before Mother’s Day, and you’ll find gift options galore. Peruse more than 100 art booths, silent auction, rummage sale, live music, keiki games, pony rides and plants, flowers and lei.

“We’ll also have La Patisserie, the most incredible selection of homemade pastries assembled all in one spot,” explains Kimber Carhart, parent volunteer. “It’s dangerously delicious — and we have a baking contest at the event. Do come and enjoy the very, very large selection of baked goods.”

And bring your appetites for Seabury’s uber-popular Restaurant Row with foods by top restaurants and some anonymous Maui chef donors.

“The chow fun usually sells out really fast and there are two very large tented areas in separate spots where live local entertainment will be playing all day with different types of music. Choose the music you like and go sit under that tent,” continues Carhart.

DUO Steak & Seafood at Four Seasons Resort Maui will be at Restaurant Row with Executive Chef Craig Dryhurst’s prawn and scallop Mai Tai Chao Tom served with blood-orange tapioca. Fairmont Kea Lani will bring grilled teriyaki chicken and fried rice by Executive Chef Tylun Pang. And you’ll also find Indian veggie Masala and vegetable Korma; breakfast burritos, Pad Thai noodles, Spam musubi, hot dogs and the Salad Lover’s Dream entrees.

“One new thing we’ll be doing this year is acai bowls,” says Carhart. For more details, call 572-7235.

The new Taco Style Maui has been up and running in the beautiful courtyard near Aria’s on Vineyard Street in Wailuku. Just look for the bright sign, walk down the alley and enter the wonderland full of picnic tables under a massive banyan tree, then head to the quaint and colorful taco shack.

“It’s a combination of Costa Rican and Hawaiian fare,” owner Michael Smythe says. “Gourmet fusion. We don’t do carnitas or chile verde. I’ve been to 18 countries from Vietnam to Holland on four continents — and dishes are from my travels. But the veggie-taco recipe is from my Costa Rican wife, Priscila Smythe.

“The veggie tacos are my grandmother’s recipe with homemade oatmeal “meat” and pumpkin and sunflower seeds,” Priscila says of the flavorful dish.

Fish tacos are ono poached in butter and oils of coconut, olive and achiote. Chicken in the tacos is sauteed in coconut oil and brown sugar with a mild tomato base. Tropical beef tacos are slightly spicy. Handcrafted salsas include watermelon basil and lemongrass lemon with herbs picked by the Smythes for their menu. The beans are phenomenal and the prices are right. Hours are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays to Fridays. For more details, call 385-2946.

Mark your calendars for May 20 to 26 for Restaurant Week Wailea. One of the 19 participants, Matteo’s Osteria recently sent Thoger Petry to Oahu — and he won the Chaine Young Sommelier Award — and this week he’s competing in the nationals in Paso Robles, Calif.

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