Kihei Gains a Restaurant, Paia Loses One
By Vanessa Wolf
What looks like a suburban house on Kio Loop in central Kihei is actually Chez Meme Baguette Bistro.
The restaurant opened in late December 2012 and serves breakfast and lunch Tuesday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The chef/owner takes Mondays off to spend with his infant daughter and wife.
Breakfast runs from $9 to $14 and is available all day. The menu offers French toast, a modified loco moco with pork, and a variety of omelets such as the Montagnarde (Black Forest ham, onions, potatoes, and raclette cheese), Forestiere (seasonal mushrooms and fresh herbs) and Beef Bourguignon (beef short ribs, caramelized onions, mushrooms, and sour cream).
Lunch offerings range from $8 to $15 per person with daily soup and salad and sandwich specials in the $10 range.
Non-sandwich options include French Onion soup as well as a smattering of salads such as goat cheese, Caesar or country-style.
The baguette in the name makes a prominent appearance on the lunch menu with a variety of sandwiches available.
Options include the Cordon Bleu (Black Forest ham, chicken, Emmenthal and Dijon mustard), From ‘ton (Brie, warmed pears, and toasted walnuts) and Cocktail (shrimp, lettuce, fresh tomatoes, and homemade cocktail sauce).
The restaurant is actually the second Chez Meme Baguette Bistro location, the first being located on Hastings Street in Vancouver, BC.
In contrast, Johnny B’s Burger Shack in Paia has suddenly closed up shop.
Owners Tom and Pam Leary took over the lease a few years back with the hopes of creating a wedding destination.
After hitting some hurdles there, they opted instead to open Johnny B’s in late January of last year.
They went with a burger joint concept modeled after the popular mainland Five Guys chain, and served mostly burgers, hot dogs, and milkshakes. The Learys focused on local ingredients, utilizing Komoda Bakery buns, Big Island cattle beef, and Maui-made Roselani ice cream.
To outsiders, Johnny B’s seemed to be enjoying relative success.
Online reviews ranked them consistently as “very good” or “excellent” and rumor had it they were cooking up some of the best fish and chips on the island.
Attempts to contact the Learys – the website and Facebook pages have been removed and the phone number goes to a fax machine – were unsuccessful.
Local fans hope they’ll resurface in another location soon.
***Special thanks to Tom K., Daniel Legare, and Charly Espina Takahama for the tips.***
We welcome your feedback. Please let us know if you hear of any new restaurants opening or reopening, total menu overhauls, or simply know of a hidden treasure you want to share. Have a restaurant you want reviewed (or re-reviewed)? Drop us a line – Vanessa(@mauinow.com)