AROUND THE TOWN. . . Rumors are swirling that the popular Maui Chefs Present will lose its annual home on the oceanfront lawn of the Hyatt Regency Maui in Kaanapali - all true. But the good news is The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua will step up to the plate and host the event Sept. 5.
"We're thrilled," says LahainaTown Action Committee's Executive Director Rina Sampson. "The willingness of the Ritz to support the event in Kapalua will take Maui Chefs Present to a whole new level.
"The Hyatt was a wonderful host for several years and set a high standard that continually resulted in the event being sold out," she continues. "A sincere mahalo goes out to them for their support."
Brother-and-sister team Brad Kawano and Dawn Fukatomi are owners in the new Frankie’s Cafe in the Wailuku Industrial Area. Like a good meal deal? This place is for you.
The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
This year's theme is "Olympics 2008." The cuisine will win you over with its international flair and the costumes worn by the chefs will be, well, sporty.
Craving naan hot out of the tandoor? How about palak paneer, chicken tikka and lamb vindaloo? These and other authentic Indian dishes are now available for free delivery service in limited parts of Kihei and Wailea by Shangri-La by the Sea in the Menehune Shores.
Shangri-La is open daily for both lunch and dinner, and partner Sunil Sethi, who hails from the northern Punjab region of India, will be happy to answer any questions about his menu.
BITS AND PIECES . . . These days, readers ask me to write about good deals. The new Frankie's Cafe on Kolu Street upstairs and across the street from Maui Food Bank in the Wailuku Industrial Area heaps on enormous portions of local fare at low prices.
"We're open Monday to Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m." says Dawn Fukatomi, who with her brother, chef-partner Brad Kawano, named Frankie's after their late dad. "We do lunch delivery and we just started breakfast delivery, too." Between the two of us, we cook a local foods menu. We try to keep it reasonable and we give decent portions." (That's an understatement and a half.)
The born-and-raised-on-Maui team make their own gravy and hamburger patties from scratch and do bentos, salads, sandwiches and plate lunches.
Today's lunch special is fresh corned beef and cabbage served on chow fun with rice and macaroni salad (gotta have your three starches). Friday's special is baked salmon with imitation crab.
Maui Ocean Center in Maalaea will host another Night at the Reef from 6 to 8 this evening. As you explore the center's Living Reef, Hawaiians & the Sea and Open Oceans exhibits after dark, you may sip complimentary tea or coffee and munch cookies.
Naturalists will be on hand to chat and to show the coral spawning footage and you may purchase pupu such as Asian chicken somen salad and avocado-mango summer rolls along with Reef Zinger drinks.
We hear Moose McGillycuddy's in Kihei has the best happy hour daily from 4 to 7 p.m., if you like to sip top-shelf cocktails and munch pupu such as crispy calamari, kalua pork sliders and loaded nachos. "Grey Goose and soda, and shots of Jagermeister are $3," says Managing Partner Penny Putnam. "Order drinks with two types of alcohol, such as a Stoly White Russian or mai tais with Barcardi and Meyers, and it's $4."
Who Cut The Cheese will host another one of its events pairing five wines with five cheeses from 3 to 5 p.m. this Sunday at Stella Blues in Kihei. This month's theme is "Raving Roses." Not the flowers, silly, but the blush color, light and fruity wines.
The zin-meister, Van Williamson of acclaimed Ed Meades Vineyards, is coming to Maui to chat up guests at a special dinner July 24. He produces what are being pegged as "provocative, interesting and unique old-vine zinfandels." The meal will be at Roy's Kahana, featuring the cuisine of Chef Joey Macadangdang.
The '40s-style Ruby's Diner at the Queen Ka'ahumanu Center has just introduced a limited-edition milkshake called Blueberries and Cream. Visit the location anytime through Sept. 8 and you will have a chance to win a customized Schwinn beach-cruiser bicycle.
* Carla Tracy can be reached at 242-6342, email email@example.com or fax 242-6390.