AROUND THE TOWN . . . Just two days after this Side Orders column announced that Sammy's Beach Bar Rum launched at Hard Rock Cafe in Lahaina, I ran into its namesake, rocker Sammy Hagar, at the Maui Swap Meet in Kahului.
"It's just flying off the shelves now," says the former lead singer for Van Halen and now the supergroup, Chickenfoot. "Master distiller Mark Nigbur has really perfected it by hand distilling in small batches."
By the way, Nigbur also hand distills the ultra premium Pau Vodka on Maui. Pau will flow Dec. 10 before the Boyz II Men show at Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Kahului (see related story on Page 23).
Chef Mila Crisologo, a partner in Four Sisters Kitchen in Wailuku, is selling sliced turkey, ham, prime rib and whole lechon or “pig” meals for pickup through the holidays. Call at least two days in advance.
The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
Locals love to rave about Zippy's original-recipe chili, oxtail soup and teriyaki-beef sandwiches. Now, the Hawaii Cattlemen's Council and the Hawaii Beef Industry Council have awarded Zippy's Restaurants the 2011 Beef Backer Award for its support of the industry.
Since it won Nov. 28, Zippy's has become a finalist for the National Beef Backer Award, which will be presented at the 2012 Cattle Industry Convention and Trade Show Feb. 1 to 4 in Nashville, Tenn. On Maui, you may check out the beef dishes at Zippy's in Kahului.
Speaking of beef, loco moco only costs $6 at the daily breakfasts in Four Sisters Kitchen on Vineyard Street in Wailuku. "We make our own homemade hamburger patties from scratch," says partner Mila Crisologo. "We also have $5 breakfasts such as sweet-bread French toast, longganisa Filipino sausage, and adobo or garlic fried rice - and all come with eggs."
In addition, Four Sisters Kitchen will present Christmas and New Year's Day brunch buffets from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., and is now taking orders for holiday meals that will be available for pickup. Call 242-1135.
Belgian-born David Gemberling has been celebrated as chef at the old Lobster Cove and in recent years at Casanova. Now, he's jumped ship and is cooking up a savory storm at Maui Bake Shop in Wailuku.
For Wailuku's First Friday this week, the bakery will open for dinner until about 8:30 p.m. or so. You may BYOB and dine on Gemberling's seafood crepes, fresh gnocchi with gorgonzola sauce, and free-range chicken marinated in lemon and orange and grilled to perfection.
Of course, French-born Pastry Chef and Maui Bake Shop owner Jose Krall does all of the desserts, from heavenly croissants to chocolate chip cookies.
Adele Rugg, who is in charge of the Maui chapter of the Chaine des Rotisseurs culinary group, marched in Macy's Day Parade with Hawaii All State Band. "I played clarinet. There were 400 students and one graduate - me!" By the way, the Chaine will hold its gala year-end event at Gerard's in Lahaina this weekend.
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BITS AND PIECES . . . There's a new monthly food- and-jazz event in West Maui called An Evening with the Artists at David Paul's Island Grill. It kicks off from 7 to 10 p.m. Wednesday in David Paul's oceanview location at Lahaina Center with Gene Argel, Paul Marchetti and John Zangrando.
A special three-course gourmet dinner with champagne pairs nicely with the jazz. In addition, Godiva Vodka will pour new flavors and martini specials; and local artworks will be on display. No cover charge.
Holiday treats and refreshments will be part of the free tree-lighting event at 5 p.m. Friday in the Fairmont Kea Lani Maui's lobby in Wailea. At 25-feet-tall, the tree is the second largest on view in the state and it will dazzle you with its 23,000 lights.
The Friday Night Seafood Buffet will relaunch at Makena Beach & Golf Resort's newly renovated Molokini Bar & Grille restaurant this week.
Featuring five stations of seafood dishes, the Friday night buffet compliments the resort's popular weekend lineup of food options, such as the Saturday Japanese Buffet and the award-winning Sunday Brunch.
Executive Chef Marc McDowell's top picks are Makena crab au gratin potatoes, beer-batter mahimahi with jalapeno remoulade, steamed clams with crusty bread and garlic butter, and cilantro-and-macadamia-crusted opakapaka with grilled pineapple salsa. Call 875-5888.
This month's I'o Wine Club at 505 Front Street in Lahaina will flow from 8 to 10 p.m. Friday with raw foods by Choice Health Bar and sinfully raw wines by sommeliers. Call 661-8422.
** Got restaurant/food event scoop? Call Dining Editor Carla Tracy at 242-6342 or email email@example.com.