STAR SIGHTINGS . . . Where do the rich and famous like to go for a getaway from all of the troubles and the pressures of the real world? Maui seems to be the hot spot "du jour."
Paris Hilton and her pals enjoyed a leisurely, two-hour feast at a corner table in the Plantation House in Kapalua this week as they texted and talked. The restaurant offers both breakfast and lunch all day long from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., which makes it convenient if you fly in from say, Las Vegas, and crave a morning burger.
Britney Spears and her boyfriend, Jason Trawick, also just chose Maui as a getaway. They were spotted departing the Island Star sailing yacht at Maalaea Harbor recently. While onboard, Britney enjoyed the cuisine and danced the hula. You may Google it. The couple also dined and browsed in The Shops at Wailea.
The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
Kahului Ale House has new owners, and they’ve hired Executive Chef Brian Carter, pictured with server Deva Smith-Gunter.
Supping at Kimo's in Lahaina recently was a slam dunk, at least for basketball Hall of Famer and two-time National Championship winner Bill Walton.
The former Boston Celtic enjoyed a relaxing evening at the Front Street landmark with family, including son, Luke Walton, another two-time National Championship winner (for the Los Angeles Lakers).
We hear a particular superstar chef from Oahu is fishing in Maui waters for a restaurant. But unfortunately, I can't share any more details now.
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ALE'S WELL IN KAHULUI . . . It's comforting to know that "ale's well" in Kahului at the Ale House, since new owners took over Aug. 1. In fact, it was just voted the Best Sports Bar on Maui in the annual Best of Maui contest in The Maui News.
"Starting next week, we'll kick off our happy-hour and late-night menus, as well as lunch specials that will get you in and out of here at a really good price," says owner Brad Sundin. "We'll kick off breakfast at 7 a.m. this Sunday and run it every Sunday through the entire football season. And, we've got a new chef who's adding a lot of local dishes from kalbi ribs to loco moco."
The Ale House's new executive chef is Brian Carter, who's cooked everywhere from the old Chart House Wailea to Roy's to Pizza Paradiso. He likes to use Maui Cattle Co. beef and Kula produce. He also roasts turkeys in-house and bakes lilikoi cheesecake.
"But you've got to try our award-winning tortilla soup from a recipe used in my parent's restaurant on the Mainland," says Brad. "We also have a keiki menu and each dish comes with a side of ice cream."
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BITS AND PIECES . . . Many people don't know that aquarium admission is not required to dine at Seascape Ma'alaea Restaurant at Maui Ocean Center. Just ask where to go at the front gate.
Featuring only sustainable seafood and trans-fat-free items, Seascape is family friendly with a children's menu and views into the Edge of the Reef exhibit, where you can watch reef sharks and tropical fish. Do try the seafood plate with Pacific yellowfin tuna, shrimp and crab claw -it's a local favorite. Seascape is open daily for lunch only from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Cafe O'Lei in Napili just opened Tuesday in the former Maui Grill location at Napili Shores. Owners Michael and Dana Pastula will tempt guests with their consistent and popular menu served at their other locations islandwide, as well as offer a little Italian food.
Gearing up for its grand-opening bash later this month in the former Gian Don's in Kihei is Bocalino Bistro & Bar. People already enjoy the food and fun at its Koi Sushi Bar and a liquor bar is getting its finishing touches with a beautiful granite counter top as I write this. Live music begins at 8:30 p.m. Wednesdays to Fridays.
* You may reach Dining Editor Carla Tracy at 242-6342.