Spring Break to Maui: Eating Around the Hyatt Regency Maui

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Emily:  Daraius and I had some delicious (and some not-so-delicious) food in Hawaii.  Here’s what we sampled in and around the Hyatt Regency, Maui:

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Sunset at Merriman’s Restaurant, Maui

Trip Report Index:

The Hyatt Regency breakfast buffet

Emily: On our first day at the hotel, Daraius wasn’t well and slept in, so we missed the free breakfast in the lounge (which we had access to as Hyatt Diamond elite members).  So we went to breakfast at the Swan Court restaurant which is open until 11:00 am.  The line was long, and we waited about 20 minutes to be seated.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Breakfast Buffet Line

The food was pretty good and included fresh banana carrot bread…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Fresh Baked Pastries

..more pastries and danishes…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Banana and Carrot Bread

…cheese…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Assortment of Cheeses

…meats, bread…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Bagels and Breads

…fresh fruit…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Fresh Fruit

…yogurt…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Yogurt and Toppings

…oatmeal…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Oatmeal and Toppings

…and banana pancakes.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Banana Pancakes

There was an omelet station with made to order omelets.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Omelet Station

There was fresh juice as well, and Daraius loved the Pineapple, Orange & Guava combination.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Fresh Juices

My favorite foods were the homemade breads because they were so fresh.  I also liked the selection of cheese, and the banana pancakes.  I got my pancakes with their coconut syrup. Yum!

The birds were also busy enjoying their breakfast!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Extra Guests at Breakfast

Breakfast was very expensive (~$27 per person without tip), and not worth it. I would much rather eat in the lounge for free or have a granola bar and some fruit instead.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Breakfast Buffet Bill For Two

Local Food

The next day, Daraius and I went to “Local Food”, a restaurant in Lahaina which specializes in traditional Hawaiian plate lunches.  Here’s a map from the Hyatt Regency to Local Food (~10 minutes drive).

Daraius:  I read about Local Food on chowhound, but while the price was reasonable, I didn’t like the food.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Local Food

Emily:  They had a small and reasonably priced menu.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Menu

I ordered shoyu chicken…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Shoyu Chicken

…and Daraius had Kalua pork.  Both meals were served with rice and a salad.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Kalua Pork Plate

Emily: The portions were generous and each only cost $7.  But…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Plate Lunch Specials

we both preferred my chicken! The pork wasn’t up to Kansas City standards!

Ululani’s for shaved ice

After lunch, we stopped for shaved ice at Ululani’s on Front Street in Lahiana  Daraius read about this on Chowhound as well.  It is about 10 minutes drive from the hotel.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Ululani’s Shave Ice

They had lots of flavors from which to choose.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Shave Ice Menu

It was fun to watch the employee make it.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Shave Ice in Action

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Shaping the Shave Ice

Emily: It looked almost too beautiful to eat.  Almost…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Mango Shave Ice

I had mango, coconut, and passion fruit flavors with a crème sauce on top and mochi.  I really like the mochi balls on top, which are like sweet rice balls.  The serving size was huge…we should have opted for the kids’ size!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Digging In

Sonz at Swan Lake (in the Hyatt Regency) for dinner

Daraius booked us at the Hyatt Regency’s fancy restaurant for dinner, called Sonz at Swan Lake.  He was tired from just 1 excursion out of the hotel, so we stayed in for dinner.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

The restaurant had a view of the garden with swans, and the waiter said that they sometimes swim up close to the window.  We made reservations late so did not get a table with a good view.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Sonz at Swan Lake

That evening the temperature dropped and it rained, and the hotel a/c was on full blast,  so I was a bit cold!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

A Rare Sight – Someone Wearing a Jacket in Maui

The menu prices were expensive.  It was about $15 for an appetizer and ~$25 to $50 for an entree.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Menu Page 1

Emily: For a hotel restaurant, there were plenty of entree choices.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Menu Page 2

We ordered a Yukon Gold Potato Gnocchi Caprese served with Olowalu Tomatoes, Mozzarella di Bufala, “Mean” Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 25 Year Balsamic for an appetizer, which was delicious!  The ingredients were all so fresh, and the tomatoes tasted like they had just been picked from the garden.

Daraius doesn’t like anything green, but even he liked the salad!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Gnocchi Caprese

Next, Daraius had fish for the main course.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Fish

I had beef tenderloin with Maui Coffee Marinade, Loaded Baked Potato, and Asparagus.  My beef was a little dry, and it was cooked medium well, rather than medium rare, as I requested.  But I ate it without sending it back.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Beef Tenderloin

My favorite part of the meal was the Caprese salad, followed by the baked potato.

Hyatt Regency Maui Club lounge for breakfast

The next day, Daraius and I had a light breakfast at the Hyatt Regency Maui Club Lounge.  We were Hyatt diamond elite members so we got access to the lounge and breakfast for free.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Hyatt Regency Club Lounge

The menu selections included apple crepes, oatmeal, cereal, homemade banana breads, pastries, fresh fruit, cheese, and bread.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Apple Crepes and Bagels

Emily: I missed not having fresh fruit but the homemade banana carrot bread and apple crepes made up for it.

But breakfast was free so we ate a late breakfast and skipped a few lunches to save money!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Apple Crepes and  Banana Carrot Bread

We sat out on the patio and had a nice view of the Ocean and the green hills.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Regency Club Lounge Patio

Maui Swiss Cafe

Another day we were back on Front Street and went for crepes at Maui Swiss Cafe.  We hadn’t planned on going there, but the thought of crepes attracted me!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Maui Swiss Cafe

Here’s the menu.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Menu

I ordered the “England” crepe with ham, cheese, and tomato…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

England Crepe

…and Daraius ordered a turkey sandwich.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Turkey Sandwich

I absolutely loved my crepe, but Daraius thought it was “okay.”

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Lahaina Ice Cream Parlor

Afterwards, we went out to the Lahaina Ice Cream parlor (also on Front Street) for ice cream before heading back to the hotel.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Ice Cream

Merriman’s for dinner with a view

Another night we went to Merriman’s (reservation needed), which Daraius read had good sunset views and food on Chowhound.  It was about 15 minutes by car from the Hyatt.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Merriman’s

There was a bar outside to watch the sunset, which serves small plates and drinks only.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Merriman’s Outdoor Bar

Emily: There were plenty of places to sit outside, and we had our choice of any seat.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Tables at Merriman’s Outdoor Bar

Instead, we sat indoors so that we could relax and enjoy dinner.  Seating inside is first come first serve (once you have a reservation) so you can’t reserve a seat by the window.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Merriman’s Inside View

We were soon served a welcome appetizer and we placed our order.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Appetizer

While we were waiting for our order, we went outside to take pictures.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Enjoying the Sunset

The sunset was absolutely gorgeous and I was so glad to spend it with my honey!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Beautiful Maui Sunset

It wasn’t as chilly tonight as it was a few nights ago, so I left my jacket at home.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Merriman’s

Here’s a link to the menu.  It was ~$15 for an appetizer and ~$30 to $50 for a main course.  I liked that they had an option for smaller portions.

We ordered the Upcountry Organic Kale and Butter Lettuce Salad which consisted of Hana Hearts of Palm, Roasted Beets, Big Island Goat Cheese, Crispy Maui Onions, and Miso Citrus and Smoked Macadamia Nut Honey Vinaigrette for our appetizer.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Kale and Butter Lettuce Salad

Daraius had Crispy “Day Boat” Mahi Mahi Ponzu.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Crispy “Day Boat” Mahi Mahi Ponzu

and Half Butter Poached Lobster.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Butter Poached Lobster

I had the filet mignon which consisted of Spicy Caramelized Maui Onion and Roasted Hamakua Mushrooms, Creamed Kula Corn, and House Whipped Potato.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Filet Mignon

I loved the creamed corn, but my meat was served medium well to well done, instead of the medium rare as I requested.

For dessert, we ordered White Chocolate Filled Malasadas, or small white-chocolate filled doughnuts, served with Maui Oma Coffee Caramel Dipping Sauce.  The doughnuts were served in a brown paper bag.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Malasadas

These were out of this world and the highlight of the dinner!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Enjoying a Great Meal at Merriman’s

Leilani’s

If you walk towards the beach from the Hyatt Regency Maui and then turn right and walk along the path, you will eventually come to leilani’s restaurant in about 15 minutes in the Whaler’s village.  This is another option if you want to not eat at the Hyatt.

Daraius went here by himself while I was laying by the pool and had fish tacos.  He said that the prices were reasonable for lunch, but I can only find a link to the more expensive dinner menu online.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Fish Tacos

Of course he had to get dessert too!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Hula Pie

Aloha Mixed Plate

On our last day we stopped at Aloha Mixed Plate for traditional Hawaiian lunches.  It is about 10 minutes from the Hyatt Regency by car.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Aloha Mixed Plate

This time, Daraius enjoyed his plate lunch!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Daraius – Happy That We Stopped at Aloha Mixed Plate

All seating is outdoors.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Outdoor Seating

And the views are very pretty!

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Breathtaking Views

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Al Fresco Dining

The food was reasonably priced.  We ordered fried chicken…

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Fried Chicken

…and coconut shrimp.  The portions were large.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Coconut Shrimp

To drink we had a mango pina coloda smoothie.

Eating around the Hyatt Regency Maui

Mango Smoothie

I loved the fresh smoothie and the view, but the fried chicken was okay.  Daraius said the shrimps were better.

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22 responses to “Spring Break to Maui: Eating Around the Hyatt Regency Maui

  1. My Cook Islander husband would love those 2 local style restaurants………and the buffet too!

  2. Hope you guys were not on restaurant run. First couple to go to Maui for restaurant hopping:) Just kidding, its sweet of you guys to share. Keep ’em coming.

  3. Nice report, I enjoyed reading it … too bad the meats were always over-cooked. Now we have an idea where to go when visiting Hawaii. Thank you for sharing! 🙂

    • @Tara @ Miles To The Wild – The plate lunches are no-frills, but often a very good value.

      @Nandakumar – We try to go restaurant hopping wherever we go!

      @Kalboz – There are lots of other options in Maui as well, but these are the few which we visited.

      @corinne – That’s very true. Often times, paying for lounge access will save money particularly in hotels which have a good lounge spread! Thanks for sharing!

  4. I find that both the Regency Club at Hyatt and the Gold Lounge at Fairmont properties are worth the extra cost even if you don’t get it for free with status. In Bermuda we splurged on the extra points to book Fairmont Southampton Gold level. Not only were the views spectacular, but there were so many food courses served throughout the day in the lounge (including such delicious fare as seared duck over mixed greens) that we didn’t need to go to lunch, or dinner, on more than one occasion. Same goes for our recent stay at the Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress in Orlando. They had such a huge spread during the afternoon hor d’oeuvre’s (jumbo shrimp cocktail, huge sandwiches with grilled veggies and fresh mozzarella, bacon wrapped scallops, assorted cheeses and breads, pasta, etc.) that we were too full to make our reservations. Not to mention the drinks were so reasonably priced at just $5 or $6. Much more cost effective than going to the bar in the lobby and spending $15 on a drink. So in the long run I find that the $25 per person per day works out to our advantage, even without Diamond status, because we would spend more than that on breakfast alone for the two of us and we get to snack on amazing food throughout the day for a fraction of the cost of going out.

  5. Emily,
    If you get an over-cooked steak you owe it to the rest of us to send it back! How else will the chef know he screwed up?
    This is a learning experience for the restaurant. It will hopefully help future visitors because the cooking will improve.
    Aloha!

  6. Darius,

    How do you become Hyatt Diamond elite members and will this work with the 2 free weekend night certificates from the Hyatt chase credit card?

  7. I am surprised you didn’t make a visit to Mama’s Fish House! Every meal we had there was heavenly, from appetizer to dessert! Did you try the shortbread cookie from Honolulu cookie company? I think they have a store in the whalers village and on front street. Their cookies and the Hawaii pineapples are two things we eat every day on our two week trip every year!

  8. Neat report. Never enough time to visit everywhere, but to go all that distance and be that close and not eat at least once at starnoodle? Seems like a waste!

  9. I never heard of the “local place” but i gotta check it out..looks like old school hawaii plate lunch place…the fried chicken you had was probably mochicko chicken style fried chicken

  10. Thanks for sharing. My wife and I ate at Aloha Mixed Plate for dinner a few years back. It was by far the worst meal that we had during our five night stay in Maui. The dishes that we ordered was very bland and dry. I couldn’t even finish the meal. Believe it or not, one of best and most valued meals was ordering Poke Rice Bowls ($4.99/bowl) at the Lahaina Farms Grocery Market. The fish was very fresh and the have a very good selection of flavors. We ate there on three occasions. Twice was because we were so exhausted from the days excursions.

    • @philbert – That’s a good point!

      @Monte Grison – You can’t use the suite upgrade with the paid night certificates. You can do a Hyatt Diamond challenge or have 25 stays or 50 nights in a Hyatt to get Diamond elite status.

      @Sharon – Emily’s allergic to fish so we didn’t go, but it got good reviews on Chowhound.

      @Larry
      – That was on our shortlist, but we never it to Starnoodle. Perhaps next time!

      @bitachu
      – It is an old school plate lunch place, but the food was just okay.

      @Bigasiannd – It was nice to experience the traditional plate lunch, but the food wasn’t great.

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  12. It appears you missed out on the best fish tacos not only on Maui… but anywhere! Jawz Fish Tacos just past the town of Wailea. If you ever have another opportunity to visit the beautiful island of Maui, don’t miss out on this fantastic experience! Look for the truck parked on the left side (island side) of the highway as you are driving to Big Beach (Makena Beach). It will be parked just before the entrance on the left side of the highway. They honestly have the best fish tacos I have ever tried… and I live in So California so I have eaten a lot of tacos!!!

    The truck became so popular the owners opened up a restaurant in Kihei. I have never eaten at the restaurant, but would imagine their expanded menu is just as good as the truck… but without that side of the road experience!

    http://www.jawzfishtacos.com/

  13. Glad you found a satisfactory plate lunch after all. If you’re ever on Oahu, try Giovanni’s shrimp truck on the North side of the island – I’m pretty sure their shrimp is from the farm right down the road, so it’s really fresh, really good, and affordable. Plus, it’s right next to a smoothie shop and other food options for Emily. My husband and I were “meh” about the food we found at our resort on Oahu, so I was very glad we had a car and could escape to explore.

    And next time, ask Emily to try a Hawaiian sweet potato instead of a standard baked potato – they’re purple inside!

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