UPCOUNTRY FUN . . . Saddle on up the mountain from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, when a brand new version of the quarterly Ulupalakua Sparkles transpires.
Maui's Winery and Ulupalakua Ranch are teaming to invite the public for a fun day of food and jazz - and for the first time, you'll get to check out the intimate new wine garden on property.
The Wine & Food Bar at the Pavilion will pour five island wines by the glass, and you may pair them with foods by chef Will Munder of Ulupalakua Ranch Store. Students from Maui Culinary Academy will assist, and proceeds will support future programs for these budding chefs.
Capische? Chef Chris Kulis will present a Spanish feast aboard the Kai Kanani cruise Saturday.
"Students from the Leis Family Class Act will be learning more about wines while working at the wine bar," says instructor Juli Umetsu. In addition, food will be coming off the grill."
Flat breads topped with line-caught fish and chili-lime sauce will pair with Lokelani sparkling rose; and flat bread topped with beef tenderloin and Upcountry pink-peppercorn chimichurri sauce will pair with Plantation Red estate syrah, and more.
Winemaker Mauricio Soler will also pour his Upcountry Gold made of viognier, muscat and chardonnay grapes; Ulupalakua Red, a blend of syrah, merlot and malbec; and Hula O Maui, a sparkler that captivates with flavors of lemon zest and pineapple.
Got restaurant / dining-event scoop? Call Dining Editor Carla Tracy at 242-6342; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bring lawn chairs and enjoy shade while under the 150-year-old trees, as you listen to jazz by headliner saxophonist Jeff Kashiwa, and Bill Heller; and Maui pianist Fulton Tashombe tickling the keys as Kelly Covington sings. For the full lineup, see Events on Page 12.
BITS AND PIECES . . . On Saturday, you may support Maui AIDS Foundation by Dining for Life in Leoda's Kitchen & Pie Shop in Olowalu.
From 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Leoda's will donate 15 percent of all sales to support Maui programs for those living with HIV/AIDS, including client care, housing, and nutrition and prevention and education.
Dig into sweet and savory pies, salads and hand-held masterpieces. The food is fresh, just like grandma made.
Mulligans on the Blue in Wailea will kick up its heels with a whiskey tasting at 6 p.m. Friday as a fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Kihei-Wailea.
Whiskey Master Thomas Turner PhD, will lead a tasty discussion on the history of fine Irish, Scotch, Canadian and American whiskeys as you sip flights and savor heavy pupu pairings. Cost is $55 per adult. Call 891-8457.
Learn how to make condiments with Chef Rachel Davies in a free, vegetarian cooking class from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. today at Down to Earth in Kahului.
Davies will showcase how to make home fries, lemon-pepper seasoning, vegan garlic mayo, tomato ketchup, and turmeric and toasted cumin mustard. Turmeric, by the way, is a powerful anti-inflammatory spice, well known as giving ballpark mustard its yellow oomph.
Hop aboard the Kai Kanani for a sunset dinner cruise from 4 to 6 p.m. on the first Saturday of each month. It launches in front of Makena Beach & Golf Resort, and will offer a Spanish-themed feast by the chefs at Capische? in Hotel Wailea and live music by Braddah Dwight.
Chef Chris Kulis will transport you into the heart of Espana with his ono brandade, piquillo peppers, olive-oil poached snapper with piperade chorizo, Malama Farm pork
in empanadas, pan-fried Manchego cheese with parsley vinaigrette and sauce Romesco, slow-cooked short ribs with toasted Marcona almonds and dried black-olive ice cream, and flat bread with house-cured meats and Spanish cheeses.
Last month, Chef Kulis wowed seafarers with a French-style dinner paired with white wines from Provence. To book a seat, call Kai Kanani at 879-7218.
Looking to host a holiday party or family feast out on the town?
Dragon Dragon Chinese Restaurant in the Maui Mall has perfect feng shui, 10-top large round tables and dinner suggestions for two, four or six people. Menu highlights are honey-walnut prawns, Peking duck with steamed buns, dried scallop soup, seafood in basket, black mushrooms with vegetables and sauteed sea bass. Dim sum is served at lunch only. Call 893-1638.
Ka'anapali Beach Hotel will throw its annual Aloha Sunday Brunch Christmas Party this weekend. Funny Morning Radio Goddess Alaka'i Paleka will be emcee, and there will be games, prizes, nonstop music, free-flowing champagne and foods from the award-winning brunch.
"Bring your staff, bring your 'ohana, or just bring yourself," says Executive Chef Tom Muromoto. "Let us do the planning, while you relax and celebrate the holidays in style. But, you may donate canned food or unwrapped gift to make someone's holiday a better one." Call 667-0124.