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The 14 best restaurants in Maui

From Japanese delights to fish tacos with a view, here are Maui's unmissable restaurants

Ella Doyle
Edited by
Ella Doyle
Written by
Lori A May

So, you’re in Maui to soak up some serious sun, sea and sand, try out a spectacular road trip, see some creatures of the ocean up close and possibly visit a volcano or two. Well it won’t disappoint – Maui is a beautiful, unique island, and it offers up a whole host of activities to get stuck into. But don’t sleep on Maui’s fantastic food and drink scene.

This Hawaiian island is home to delicious seafood, tacos, burritos and some tantalizing Japanese food, and it’s pretty much all overlooking the ocean. What could be better? From chef Masahuru Morimoto’s iconic noodles to the iconic Mama’s fish house, you’ll find a thousand foodie delights here. Read on for the best restaurants in Maui right now. 

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Best restaurants in Maui

You haven’t experienced Hawaiian food until you’ve been to the iconic Mama’s Fish House, which has been slinging out deliciously fresh seafood to locals and tourists alike for over 40 years. The menu changes seasonally, focusing on local produce. You might be lucky enough to try seared octopus, shrimp won tons or ahi ceviche with mango, but don’t miss out on the desserts and cocktails too. 

This Hawaiian-Filipino fusion restaurant is a firm favourite on the island and for good reason. Headed by chef Joey Macadangdang, this is the home of some seriously creative comfort food, but not the stodgy kind. Tuck into noodles, fried rice, crispy pork belly and short ribs, or opt for whichever fresh fish is on the menu. Of course, it would be rude not to order a side (or two) of their house made mac & cheese, and finish with a halo halo klasiko (a traditional Filipino dessert of fruit, shaved ice and evaporated milk).

If you have heard of chef Masaharu Morimoto, it is for good reason: his iconic Japanese creations are crowd-pleasers. Want to sample the very best? Opt for the chef’s choice tasting menu, where each item is carefully selected. You can also go for the à la carte menu, showcasing food from the raw bar, apps like savory rock shrimp tempura, and surf and turf entrées. Reservations are recommended as this open-air beachfront dining room is wildly popular, especially during sunset. It isn't difficult to work out why.

Huihui is a Beachfront Restaurant and is a gorgeous venue for a meal set along the calm Kaanapali shoreline. Traditional Hawaiian cuisine with modern flair is featured on executive chef Tom Muromoto’s menu with sticky spareribs, lobster dumplings, and traditional lāwalu fish starring alongside signature cocktails created with hibiscus, lavender, and other island ingredients. Huihui translates to “star constellation” or “to join, intermingle, mix,” and that’s the mood at this inviting venue where every inch of decor reflects Hawaii’s culture and environment.

If you miss the Hawaii Food & Wine Festival, make sure to stop by the Lahaina-based Star Noodle, where you can sample chef Abby Ferrer’s creations year-round. This cozy eatery fuses Filipino, French and Asian flavors, which combine into a gorgeous menu featuring house-made noodles and surprising sauces. Bring your besties to sample shared plates like scallop shots or steamed pork buns, then tempt your taste buds with fried soup or Singapore noodles. Pair your selections with sake or a lychee martini.
The Paia Fish Market Front Street Restaurant is a seafood lover’s dream where you take a role in designing your own fresh catch plate. Select one of several fresh catches like ono, snapper, or mahi-mahi, then decide how the fish is prepared. Classic options include grilled or sauteed, while extra flavor boosts are guaranteed with blackened or Cajun-style prep. Then add your choice of sides and dig in for a mouthful of joy. Want a quick lunch? Go for the shrimp quesadilla with homemade salsa.

So you’ve driven through scenic Upcountry and enjoyed a tasting at Maui Wine. Now hunger has struck, you need only cross the road to Ulupalakua Ranch Store & Grill for a surprising and delicious meal. Sure, it looks like a small shop with souvenirs and soda machines, but you’ll soon pick up the aroma of burgers on a grill. The open-air venue focuses on only using Maui-grown produce alongside local ranch beef. Pull up a patio chair and enjoy one of the island’s hidden gems.

Find this vibrant red food truck, and you’ll come across award-winning plates served by chef Kyle Kawakami. The Maui-born cook grew up surrounded by the farms of Upcountry, so it is no surprise his menu highlights only the best local ingredients. Think fresh-baked focaccia sandwiches, calamari salads with a delightful papaya twist, and seared ahi tuna on a bed of local organic greens. Don't be surprised to find it closed, as this famous truck often gets snapped up for private events and major celebrations.


Follow the sweet sounds of the ukulele, and you’ll stumble upon the casual island vibe of Leilani’s on the Beach. Start with a Maui fresh salad with island greens and toasted macadamia nuts before sampling a fresh catch of sustainable seafood, or opt for pork ribs sourced from Maui farms. Leilani’s is a popular spot where locals gather for special events, but you’ll find just as many visitors embracing ‘aloha hour‘ food and drink specials.

Head to the Maui Brewing Co headquarters in Kihei to experience hearty dining paired with 36 craft and specialty beers on tap. First, take a brewery tour to acquaint yourself with this indie venue, then dig into classic pub fare, island-style. Think lager-infused artisan pizzas, fish tacos featuring the latest catch, and veggie burgers with macadamia nuts and avocado. Like any great pub, you’ll find live entertainment and happy hour specials.


11. Huli Huli Chicken

The road to Hana is via an amazingly scenic coastal drive. Upon arrival, you’ll want to seek out a great spot to refuel. While you won’t find Huli Huli listed in the phone book (and neither does the venue have a website), follow locals’ lead and get in line. You’ll find this modest eatery at Koki Beach Park for as long as ingredients are on hand: if it’s a busy beach day, you’ll want to get here early. This is a cash-only establishment, so bring bills to pick up a freshly-made plate of Hawaiian barbeque.

Life is simply better with pie – and chef Ed Morita delivers both sweet and savory temptations at Leoda’s Kitchen & Pie Shop. You can pick up a burger or a salad here, but you'llsee how popular it is when it runs out of pies. You could go for classics like an apple crumble, but there is nothing like the macadamia nut chocolate praline pie. Want something tart and sweet? Dig into pineapple lemon pie for the best of both worlds.


After a morning on the beach, reward yourself by strolling to Kihei Caffe for a satisfying plate of all-day breakfast. Power up with papaya filled with yogurt and granola, or dig into a handsome serving of homemade corned beef hash. To cool down, opt for fresh-squeezed juices or a blended frozen coffee. Your flip-flops are more than welcome at this walk-up eatery, which is perfect for refueling between beach activities.

Hula Grill serves a fresh catch every day and is big on spotlighting different farmers. That means guests will always taste the freshest selections available while getting acquainted with the island’s bountiful produce and seafood. Plus, it’s a beautiful setting: the Kaanapali beachfront is just steps from the tables, providing a dreamy combination of lapping waves and sunset colors as a view.

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