Side Orders • September 13, 2018

Server Brandon Allred of Cane & Canoe Bar at the Montage Kapalua Bay delivers a famous mai tai, Kona lobster roll sliders and limu ahi tartare with avocado, onion and ginger during happy hour that runs daily through September. CARLA TRACY photo

PIECE OF CAKE . . . Or should I say, ‘pie?” Dessert lovers may want to participate in the Pie Meetup from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday in the Chefs Table area of the Mill House Roasting Room at the Maui Tropical Plantation in Waikapu. Attendees are asked to bake a sweet or savory pie infused with as many local ingredients as possible and bring it to MTP to share. No cream pies, please. This zero-waste event will feature a storm of possibilities.

Speaking of storms, I can’t predict Olivia’s status as of press time, so it’s prudent to check if the Pie Meetup and other events will be happening.

For instance, Maui Lavender Farm in Kula was all set to present a tea tour/luncheon on Friday to benefit American Cancer Society Hopefest. Then Proprietor Cathy Goo Toda looked at the weather reports and decided to change the event to the last weekend of the month.

The event starts with a tour of her aromatic lavender farm (at 4,200-feet elevation on Haleakala) at 10 a.m., followed by a traditional tea ceremony at 11 a.m. presented by Lena Morita, Sarah Shim and Ele Ventula Honda. Creating a “good luck” banner will be Hong Kong Chinese calligrapher Julie Chin Shiotsugu. Then sip the tea and enjoy a light lunch with Chinese desserts. The cost is $35 per person. For reservations, call 250-2284.

“In light of the storm, we’re looking at Sept. 29,” said Goo Toda. “We grow tea, coffee and olives in addition to lavender. Please call to confirm.”

Ruth’s Chris Steak House in The Shops at Wailea picked a good time for a renovation project. It closed Sept. 4 and will reopen Sept. 24. GM Randy Spencer says there will be a new bar and lounge with a TV for sports fans along with a new kitchen to inspire the talented chefs.

Hopefully, the sun will be shining on Sept. 20, when Ruth’s Chris Steak House at the Outlets of Maui mall in Lahaina will celebrate 20 years on Maui. I remember the grand opening when the fine-dining franchise’s founder, Ruth Fertel, was there along with VIPs such as former U.S. Vice President Dan Quayle. I overheard someone ask him, “How do you spell potato?” He was polite and smiled, but it was a dud of a spud joke.

On Sept. 20, diners will get a $20 gift card for a future visit, and one lucky person will win a dinner for two. You may sink your teeth into the Sizzling Fall Special of steak and lobster for $55.95, which includes an accompaniment, salad and dessert. Call Ruth’s at 661-8815.

“We would like to say ‘mahalo’ to kamaaina and visitors for their support over the years,” says Director of Sales & Marketing Emi Chang Espinda.

From 4:30 to 6 p.m. through September, Cane & Canoe Bar at Montage Kapalua Bay will run a daily happy hour. The bar is a fun, open-air hangout with a large painting by world-famous artist Pegge Hopper, a grand piano with live music by Dayan Kai on Wednesdays, a billiards table and other fun effects.

In the bar as well as adjoining Cane & Canoe restaurant, kamaaina get 25 percent off food through the month with valid Hawaii ID. Bar food includes housemade soft pretzels with cheese sauce and assorted mustards, Bluejack National wings and oysters on the half shell. Call 662-6681.

Sad to hear Cafe Del Vino has closed, but Tante’s Fish Market Restaurant & Bar has opened nearby in Maalaea, and countless culinary events are on the horizon.

Here’s hoping that Maui will weather the storm well — and that everyone stays safe and dry.

* Got restaurant/dining-event scoop? Call Dining Editor Carla Tracy at 242-6342; or email