Maui’s dining scene is unparalleled in the Hawaii islands. Foodies quiver, gourmands go belly up, and tourists are left flabbergasted. You can get a simple fish taco from an unassuming food truck and never think about fish tacos the same way again.
Maui’s restaurant scene is so popular now that the local wine and food festival sells out fast, and celebrity chefs like Michael Mina come here for inspiration. If your wife is making a honeymoon slideshow, we can guarantee that most of the photos will be from these unforgettable restaurants, known for their romantic ambience and truly mouth-watering meals.
Mama’s Fish HouseMama's Fish House, Poho Place, Paia, HI, United States
Stop everything you’re doing and book a reservation at Mama’s Fish House now. Now. The best restaurant in Maui also happens to be the most famous, so you’re going to need to make a reservation at least two weeks in advance. Hugging a beautiful, quiet beach with incredible sunset views, this open-air seafood restaurant is a rustic, high-end beach shack feeding rich people since 1973. It’s charming, undeniably romantic, and such an attraction in itself that the waiters probably love being here as much as you. The fish are fresh: you’ll be eating ahi tuna caught literally a few hours ago. The crab cakes are seasoned to perfection and the famous black pearl dessert is as beautiful and delicious as it sounds. We highly recommend the wasabi-crusted calamari, the most popular option at the restaurant. Mama’s is basically your “last night in Maui” dinner, so plan accordingly.
Ka’ Ana Kitchen at Andaz MauiKa’ Ana Kitchen at Andaz Maui
You’ve never seen a restaurant like Ka’ Ana Kitchen at the hip Andaz Maui. The open-kitchen concept (you can book seats front and center) is unique and it bustles with young chefs preparing farm-fresh, organic meals. The high ceilings, contemporary design, and tiered layout with outdoor terrace seating for ocean views adds to the ambience. This restaurant is lively, progressive, and heaps of fun. It’s a collision of hipsters, foodies, celebrities, locals, and honeymooners with so much happening you’ll feel like you’re in a musical. Don’t even think about leaving without trying the pork belly with foie gras and poha berry or any of the Wagyu beef plates. Obviously, the seafood here is just caught fresh, and the excellent craft cocktails with fresh Hawaii ingredients have added to Ka’ Ana Kitchen’s already formidable reputation.
Cane & CanoeCane & Canoe, Bay Drive, Lahaina, HI, United States
When Montage Hotels & Resorts, one of the most upscale hotel chains in the U.S., recently opened its Kapalua Bay property in Maui, it brought its elegance and prestige with it. Naturally, Montage doesn’t spare a penny with its food options, and Cane & Canoe, the signature restaurant, is destination dining at its best. Constantly racking up accolades and awards, Cane & Canoe is an open-air restaurant inspired by traditional Hawaiian canoe houses, and the decor has a Frank Lloyd Wright feel. While you can expect innovative, modern, and regional Hawaii cuisine, there are also plenty of dishes that have Asian touches, like its Calamari Chow Fun where the fresh squid serve as “noodles.”
Clay Oven PizzaClay Oven Pizza, Maui, Hawaii
Bet you never thought you’d see a pizza place on this list. We didn’t think we’d include pizza either—until we ate at Clay Oven Pizza. It’s not like Hawaii doesn’t know pizza (Hawaiian slice with ham and pineapple, anyone?), but Clay Oven Pizza is not your typical pizza joint. It’s a pop-up spot in the rain forest that’s open several nights a week. A bunch of hippies run this place, using fresh ingredients from the local Hana Farms, which they sprinkle on top of dough freshly-baked in its namesake, a wood-burning, outdoor clay oven. You’re literally eating pizza in the rainforest, and it’s going to be the best pizza you’ve ever had. People drive in from the tips of Maui to dine here. It’s set in the middle of nowhere, under a starry sky: an utterly romantic true fantasy location. Try the famed Potesto pizza, with roasted garlic cloves, caramelized onions, pesto, bechamel and Parmesan cheese.
SpagoSpago, Wailea Alanui Drive, Kihei, HI, United States
Four Seasons Maui at Wailea is pretty much one big emporium of great dining. Even the lobby lounge serves up amazing sushi while you wait to check into your room. It’s all about glitz and glam here, so you’ll want to get dressed to the nines for any of their restaurants. Among all the great spots here, Spago by Wolfgang Puck is the best. It’s Puck’s signature restaurant, and he put his heart and soul into it (not like the Wolfgang Pucks you’ll find in an airport or mall). Spago was the stomping ground for the elite in Beverly Hills back in the day, and not much has changed since then. The Asian-inspired contemporary decor is extremely romantic with its stone, wood, and exotic textures, and the ocean views are priceless. It’s a no-brainer to order the famed grilled mahi mahi with pineapple (with ginger BBQ, sweet Maui onions, shitaki mushrooms).