Hawaii Eats

CHEERS

So. I was in Maui last week and it was the. best. trip. ever.

I love all vacations (duh), but this one was really pretty perfect. We got a lot of sleep, and lots of sun. We hiked and napped, and swam and read. And saw lots of Hawaii creatures (lizards, snails, slugs, oh my). And… we ate.

We plotted each meal as if it were our last – we asked locals for recommendations, read through Yelp reviews, and one time basically just let our waiter order for us. So – here is a quick rundown of where we ate, and what we ate. This is likely 0% interesting to you, so you don’t have to read. But I wanted to have a good list to refer to when we return to Maui next year ; )

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Here’s a quick rundown…

Monkeypod: We had Lobster Deviled Eggs (had to try), Blackened Pineapple Salad, and amazing amazing Seared Ahi. Plus tropical cocktails to kick off vacation!
Paia Fish Market: We shared Ono and Mahi burgers, and Maui Brewing Co. Bikini Blonde Lagers. Best lunch of my life.

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Mama’s Fish House: Apparently this is the best restaurant on the island! It was pretty good, but not our favorite meal. If we return, I think we’ll go during sunset instead of after…it’s right on the beach and I’m sure the view is great. We had Shashimi with Hawaiian Salts, Shrimp Wontons and Lobster and Crab Stuffed Mahi. The Mahi was great. Also, some elaborate shell-shaped dessert, which was surprisingly good.

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Road to Hana: We packed lunches and snacks for our adventure, but bought two yummy treats along the way — Banana Bread from Halfway to Hana, and Bourbon and Vanilla Roasted Coconut Chips from one of the roadside vendors.

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Cool Cat Cafe: We were exhausted after a day of driving, and arrived in Lahaina on the later side – around 8:30pm. Brett was craving a burger so we went to Cool Cat. Burgers were actually pretty good, but we have better burgers in NY, so this can be skipped next time (unless a craving calls for it!)
Shark Pit: According to Yelp, this food truck is the #6 best place to eat in the USA. We had fish and shrimp tacos, and they were pretty bomb.com. Plus a strawberry basil lemonade from the lemonade truck in the same lot. Really good lunch, but Paia Fish Market takes the prize.

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Sansei: A+++ sushi. Omg. Their signature roll is Panko-Crusted Deep Fried Ahi Shashimi Sushi… it’s insane. We also had tempura shrimp (always a good choice), tuna carpaccio with peanuts and cilantro, and a special roll with Hawaiian Mackerel.

SANSEITUNA
Lahaina Luna: So this place is #27 on Yelp’s list, butttt I don’t really think it deserves to be there! It was pretty good, but not that memorable. We had soba noodles with blackened mahi, tacos, and their “crazy” fries.
Hula Grill: For a restaurant that sits right in the middle of a few resorts, Hula Grill was really good. We shared some Mahi and a Hawaiian Pizza.
Leoda’s: We stopped here for sandwiches on the way to Whale Watching. Apparently their pies are really good, so we’ll have to try that next time. We got two tuna sandwiches – one Ahi with avocado and melted cheese (both of our favorite), and then a spicy tuna salad (also good.)
Star Noodle: Holy cow this place was good. We sat at the bar and basically let the bartender order for us – brussels sprouts, Filipino “bacon & eggs” (aka pork belly and a paoched egg), and Singapore noodles. Plus an insane ginger cocktail.
Flatbread Company: On our last day we returned back to Paia and got pizza at Flatbread Company, a bottle of wine, and returned to the beach. Being New Yorkers, we have very high standards for pizza, but this one passed the test.

BIKINIBLONDE

El Cosmico

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I have a recent obsession with road trips. I’ve never really been on one (although I think my family drove to Florida when I was itty bitty), and now I’m itching to plan one! My latest itinerary involves road tripping to Marfa, Texas and spending the night in one of El Cosmico’s renovated vintage trailers. How cute is the little community of trailers, teepees, and tents? Plus you can rent bikes to explore the town, or a wood-fired hot tub to relax at the end of the day. Quite obsessed, and need to make this happen. Who’s with me?

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Drawn The Road Again

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Chandler O’Leary documents her travels with watercolors in a moleskin journal and, lucky for us, is now sharing them on her travel blog Drawn The Road Again. Her illustrations are amazing – it’s hard to believe most of them are done from a car!

Bookmarked!

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The 4th!

Hope everyone had a great 4th of July weekend!

Brett and I spent the long (so long!) weekend up in the Berkshires with his family. Even though I missed my own family, the weekend was just about perfect. There is something about lake living that gets me every time: Lake Life > Beach Life in my book! I am very much looking forward to our Michigan trip planned for August, which is really lake living at its finest.

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Like my trip to New Mexico, our weekend was the perfect mix of activities and relaxation. We spent some time each day at the lake down the road where we read in the sun, played with babies in the shade, ate cheese and the best nectarines (plus drank Peronis and wine out of mason jars), and went for dips in the lake when the heat was just too much to handle. Speaking of babies, Wyatt and Elizabeth are just about the cutest, sweetest, yummiest little ones – full of smiles, leg kicks, and drool! The best babies. Seriously.

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Moriah organized a horseback trail ride for us on Friday morning that was one of my favorite parts of the trip. My horse’s name was Fancy and I somehow managed to stay on top of him the entire time… even when he trotted (terrifying) and when we had to ford a river (Oregon Trail style…except it was a creek. But also terrifying.)

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We also fit in a run and a bike ride in the neighborhood (both were short, but we broke a sweat so I think they still count), and one itty bitty hike.

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On the night of the 4th, we went to Tanglewood to hear Jackson Browne play, and then watch fireworks. Unfortunately, there was a bit more traffic than we expected, so our seats weren’t great and we ended up leaving before fireworks even started to beat the rush out. So no fireworks for us, which I know is very un-American! Oh well.

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Aside from lake time, our adventure on horseback and our trip to Tanglewood, we cooked, ate, drank beer and Jack, watched Country Strong and What Lies Beneath, and wore red, white and blue pretty much the entire weekend… so I think that’s American enough! Oh, and I wore my Abercrombie & Fitch jean shorts, so that’s that.

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More to come on what we cooked, because the treats were too yummy for a quick mention – they need a full post.

New Mexico

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I spent the first half of last week in New Mexico with my family. It was the perfect long weekend with a good balance of activity, culture, and time to relax.

My favorite part of the trip was our visit to Bandeleir National Monument where we saw petroglyphs, standing walls, and cave dwellings (my favorite) dating back as far as 11,000 years!

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We also spent time walking around the galleries and shops in Santa Fe’s main square, where I picked up some goodies for the apartment. We made a quick visit to the Georgie O’Keeefe museum which showcased some of her lesser-known paintings of the New Mexico landscape. We popped inside the Loretto Chapel to see the famous “mystery staircase” (apparently built by St. Joseph himself!) and, of course, ate our fair share of tacos, burritos, and New Mexican chile sauces.

PS I also got this amazing view of Manhattan on my way out of the city : )

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Paris!

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Don’t even get me started on Paris. Just kidding, get me started! Because I’m obsessed with it. I went for the first time for Spring break while I was studying abroad. Stina flew over and met me and our week can be captured by the food counts we took: 29 crepes, 14 baguettes, and 13 bottles of wine… ’nuff said. It was glorious. Then I returned for a second time in 2010 with Nais and Lizzle to visit Nils, and that trip can be summed up by the image of us three girls sitting in a bathtub filled with boys’ clothing. And two weeks ago I got to make my third appearance in the city of love…a very brief appearance (very very brief), but Paris still had me smitten. I managed to down four croissants over 48 hours, and smuggled two more back to the states in my suitcase. In between croissants, we shuffled between appointments, walked through the beautiful Printemps and Galeries Lafayette and had two amazing dinners at Le Petit Saint Benoit and Chez George. Plus, again, wine, wine and more wine… and Jack Daniels and Coca Cola Lite. (Mr. Daniels is so worldy!) Paris is just the prettiest city, and I can’t wait to go back.

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Milano!

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So I’m back from my 24 hours in Milan! And ready to write a bit about both of my trips. I had never been to Italy before, and it really blew me away. Did you know that Milan is the second largest city in Italy? I feel like it gets such a bad rap for being “grey” and “industrial”, but I quite enjoyed it. Sure, I can’t compare it to Rome or Florence (yet), but I loved the few days I spent in the fashionable city! We spent two days in appointments with vendors and browsing through showrooms, and then our third day at an enormous shoe show. Despite our packed schedule, we found time to do a bit of shopping and, of course, eat! I have access to pretty great Italian food in New York (hello, Eataly!) but getting it right from the source is even better. I had Paper Moon pizza, salt sea bass at La Risacca, eggplant parmesan at Bice, and homemade pasta at Da Ilia. Plus wine, wine and more wine. And Jack Daniels with Coca Cola Lite… of course.

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My trip yesterday was just an abbreviated version of my trip two weeks ago: I arrived in the morning, was able to sleep for two hours, woke up and re-fueled with pizza for breakfast, saw the runway collections at Prada and Miu Miu, headed back to the hotel for cocktails, then finished off the day with melt-in-your-mouth papardelle al telefono at Bice.

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Milan and I seem to be forming quite the relationship! As long as it keeps up its end of the bargain (mostly food related), I will gladly return.

Picture 1: Duomo di Milano / Milan’s Cathedral in the center of town

Picture 2: Amazing amazing butterfly art at Prada’s showroom

Picture 3: Casual breakfast 🙂

A few more pictures after the jump!

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