It started off as a sleeper in the former Cane & Taro spot oceanfront in Ka'anapali Resort between Hula Grill and Leilani's on the Beach.
But people are starting to catch on that the Italian pastas burst with flavor and the fresh fish jumps off the menu charts at moderate prices. So Maui Fish & Pasta is starting to get the recognition it deserves.
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, MF&P is owned by DK Kodama of Sansei restaurant fame and Ivan Pahk, his managing chef partner. In addition to fish and pasta, you'll find sushi and sashimi, crisp salads, fun appetizers and even farm-to-bar drinks, offering enough variety to please every member of your party.
General Manager Alika Youn and Chef-partner Ivan Pahk (right) rock front and back of the house with stellar service and tastes.
The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
In addition, well-known industry person, Alika Youn, is now running the front of the house, ensuring service is tops. For the uninitiated, Youn was a manager at Roy's, Sansei and Ko, before he took a couple of years off to take care of his now late grandparents.
I say, run, don't walk there. MF&P is a waking giant. Do check out tourists who stumble into this casual restaurant and haven't a clue what is in store for them. Watch the looks of surprise and pleasure on their faces after they eat, say, summer-pea crostini, pan-seared dayboat scallops, and crisp Brussels sprouts Milanese.
"Ivan's been with the company for 14 years, and so DK gave him a spot so he can express his own creativity," says Youn. "Of course, Ivan still plays a huge part in taking care of Sansei. But this is his baby."
Chef Pahk makes fresh pastas daily. Savor red-wine slow braised Australian lamb shank with Hamakua mushrooms and sugar-snap peas on fresh linguine. Or pan-roasted jumbo white shrimp on fresh fettucini tossed with San Marzano tomato cream and baby spinach.
"We go through 60 to 80 pounds of fresh fish per night," says Pahk. "On any given evening, we feature five to seven varieties. The food here is served more family style. We're not just making meals, we want you to have a great dining experience."
Ask about the early-bird dinner specials Tuesdays and Wednesdays with 50-percent off food.
For more details, call Maui Fish & Pasta at 662-0668 or visit www.mauifishandpasta.com.