PONDER THIS . . . According to Louis Pasteur, "A bottle of wine has more philosophy than all the books in the world." What better day to sip some wine and wax on like Plato or Epicurus than Thanksgiving? Happy feasting, everyone!
Wine was also on the minds of many Maui restaurateurs, managers, chefs and servers at the recent Chambers & Chambers Trade Show at The Ritz-Carlton Kapalua. Top winemakers from around the country were in attendance and the industry had plenty to say.
Richard Clark, manager of O'o Farm in Kula, says they just bought a new picnic table to accommodate 20 more people on his tours and will add more excursions for larger groups early next year.
Laurent Thibault and his wife, Katie will present Thanksgiving dinner from noon to 6 p.m. today in their Hana Hou Cafe in Haiku. Dine in or take out.
CARLA TRACY photo
"But for now, we do four tours a week Mondays through Thursdays," he says. "We're a boutique producer of fruits and vegetables and people look to us as a fun place to visit when Upcountry."
Ran into Laurent Thibault and his wife, Katie, at the trade tasting and they say that their Hana Hou Cafe in Haiku will be open today for Thanksgiving, serving dinner from noon to 6 p.m. Come enjoy pumpkin curry soup, turkey plate with all of the trimmings and pumpkin pie for $22.95, or take it home with you.
5 Palms Kihei just redid its patio and it's also open for Thanksgiving, according to General Manager Moki Chong Kee, with plenty of oceanfront seating to accommodate turkey day revelers.
Chong Kee also says happy hour rocks two times a day at his restaurant, the first from 3 to 7 p.m. and the second from 9 to 11 p.m., the latter with sushi only.
Marco Defanis of Marco's Grill & Deli in Kahului was there, too, saying he now pours Bloody Marys and Mimosas for $5 until 1 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays and the Mary mix is made from scratch.
We also hear that Miljenko "Mike" Grgich, founder of Grgich Hills Cellars in Napa and a repeat visitor to Maui, will turn 90 in April and that, "Something big will happen that we may participate in."
Ed Mikesh, the new owner of Wailea Wine, says that for the first time ever, the store will be open on Thanksgiving Day. Come in anytime today from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. to pick up something to wax philosophic about. . . Charles Fredy, who heads up Chambers & Chambers here, says his firm teamed with the Ritz at the trade tasting to give $1,000 to Kamehameha III School's music department and to Theater Theatre Maui.
BITS AND PIECES . . . There's a new martini and pupu menu drawing in the crowds at the South Shore Tiki Lounge in Kihei.
"We invite you to try some of our newly launched menu items," says owner Alma Tassi. "Like our crispy seafood cake, beet Caprese, and sweet kalua pizza. Our bartenders have also put together a fabulous new martini menu ($5 on Wednesday nights!), so it's time for a tasting and sipping evening at the lounge."
Winner of the recent Life is Sweet contest at the Shops at Wailea was Pastry Chef Ricky DeBoer of Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui resort. He wowed the judges with Sweet Dream orange almond cake with Waialua Estate chocolate, Kula strawberry granita and pumpkin macaroon.
Amigo's just celebrated the grand opening of its newest restaurant Monday in the former Big Wave in Kihei. It now serves breakfast, lunch and dinner and will rock with live music. Owner Jesus Ortega put chili pepper plants around the cantina and diners will find a beautiful outdoor dining area and margarita bar.
Speaking of new, the Kahana Grill just opened Saturday in the old Roy's Kahana location. It's name was changed from Wasabe Island Grill and it's open for Thanksgiving from 5 to 10 p.m.
Well-known Maui chef Mauro Gramuglia consulted on the menu with owner Ken Murray, who has done extensive travels around the world. The duo incorporated comfort foods from various locales.
"The menu is eclectic world cuisine," says General Manager David Segarra. "We have French, Italian, Portuguese and Hawaiian recipes with local techniques and ingredients, which makes it fun."
Since this is the time of year to "give thanks," you may want to take note of the Dine Out For AIDS promo that will raise awareness of HIV/AIDS. Dine Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday at Leoda's Kitchen & Pie Shop in Olowalu, Casanova's in Makawao, and Ocean's Beach Bar & Grill in Kihei, where 15 percent of the proceeds will go to Maui AIDS Foundation those evenings.