Archive for June, 2016

june • 2016 keiki cover model

BLOG_KEIKI COVER_IMG_3274_06.2016Mahalo to Chip and Marcela Bannowsky for sharing their daughter Sophia Keolani Bannowsky for our cover this month.

Dad, Chip, works as a concierge at Royal Kahana Resort and mom, Marcela, is a nurse in the Neurology department at Maui Medical Group.

Sophia is in kindergarten at Puu Kukui School, and really likes learning math and science.

She dances hula for Halau Kekuaokala au ala iliahi, and she also loves gymnastics and singing.

Dad shares, “From the beginning, Sophia has been a happy, healthy girl. She has a bright smile and a sharp wit! She loves making jokes and making others smile. She inspires both her mother and I to be better people and parents, and to work harder!”

the mill house at maui tropical plantation: farm-to-table cuisine prepared with integrity, expertise, and fearless creativity

ChefMillHouseWhen I moved here 13 years ago, the Maui Tropical Plantation in Waikapu wasn’t on many people’s radars. Established in 1984, and geared mostly towards keiki, it was an agricultural theme park with free admission, a tram ride, and a few Hawaiian cultural demonstrations.

Fast forward to present day, and the new and improved Maui Tropical Plantation, whose current owner, Mike Atherton, has transformed the property into a veritable oasis. The tram ride is still there and, besides the drop-dead gorgeous grounds, there are shops, two ziplines, a country store, a coffee roasting company & cafe, an outdoor concert venue, Kumu Farms’ organic fruit & produce stand, and the piece de resistance—The Mill House Restaurant, which opened in March of this year.

Paying homage to the area’s sugar plantation history, the spectacular pond and fountain outside The Mill House features equipment remnants from the old Wailuku Sugar Mill: three gigantic gears sit among lush tropical foliage and tall sprays of water, while a huge cylindrical pipe creates a waterfall effect. Adjacent to the pond is the restaurant’s lanai featuring outdoor seating and a lava-rock fire pit. Continue reading ‘the mill house at maui tropical plantation: farm-to-table cuisine prepared with integrity, expertise, and fearless creativity’

grand wailea’s michael lofaro Named “chef of the year,” and SEARCH HAWAII nominated for two EMMY® AWARDS!

Chef Mike Lofaro Headshot VerticleMichael “Mike” Lofaro, chef de cuisine of Humuhumunukunukuapua‘a restaurant at Grand Wailea Resort, was awarded Chef of the Year at the Maui No Ka Oi Magazine’s ‘Aipono Awards Gala at Grand Wailea. The prestigious Chef of the Year title is decided by peer review – voted on exclusively by Maui chefs. Lofaro also received the Most Innovative Menu and a silver award for Best Pacific Rim cuisine by the readers of the magazine.

It has been a big year for Lofaro, fondly nicknamed the “waterman chef.” He refers to the ocean as his hunting ground and uses his muse to fish, gather, forage and hunt for a quarterly dinner series called Ka Malama, based on the Hawaiian moon calendar and what is in season during certain phases of the moon.

His creative menus have him paddling a mile offshore at midnight to catch malolo (flying fish) and opelu (mackerel); hiking several hours into a valley to gather pohole fern; and jumping off the rugged ocean cliffs of the East shores of Maui to pick opihi (limpet). His kai momona dish combines wana (sea urchin), shellfish coconut emulsion, ogo (seaweed) and sea beans, and it won Best Protein Dish at the 2016 Maui County Agricultural Festival. Continue reading ‘grand wailea’s michael lofaro Named “chef of the year,” and SEARCH HAWAII nominated for two EMMY® AWARDS!’


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