Maui Food and Dining

Hawaii Food and Wine Festival Adds Maui Event

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By Vanessa Wolf

Last year's Hawaii Food and Wine Festival in Oahu. Photo courtesy Hawaii Tourism Authority.

Last year’s Hawaii Food and Wine Festival in Oahu. Photo courtesy Hawaii Tourism Authority.

The Hawaii Food and Wine Festival lasts ten days and – for the first time – will span two islands.

The third annual event begins Sunday, Sept. 1 and will feature more than 70 master chefs, culinary personalities, farmers, and wine and spirit producers from Hawaii, the mainland and around the globe.

New celebrity chefs this year include Grant Achatz of Alinea in Chicago, Art Smith of Table fifty-two in Chicago, Chris Cosentino of Incanto in San Francisco, Ricardo Zarate of Mo-Chica in Los Angeles, Anita Lo of Annisa in New York, Floyd Cardoz of North End Grill in New York, and Sheldon Simeon of Top Chef: Seattle.

Returning heavyweights include “Iron Chef” Masaharu Morimoto of Morimoto Waikiki (Honolulu… and soon to be Wailea); Nobu Matsuhisa of Nobu Waikiki and Lanai; Ming Tsai of Blue Ginger in Wellesley, MA; Hubert Keller of Fleur de Lys in San Francisco, Christina Tosi of Momofuku Milk Bar in New York, Celestino Drago of Drago Restaurant Group in Los Angeles, George Mavrothalassitis of Chef Mavro in Honolulu, and Ed Kenney of Town in Honolulu.


Co-founded in 2011 by two of Hawaii’s James Beard Award-winning chefs – Roy Yamaguchi and Alan Wong – the festival will showcase wine tastings, cooking demonstrations, and exclusive dining opportunities.


“In partnership with the tourism industry, we created this festival to give travelers to Hawai‘i and residents alike an exciting and educational food festival featuring great chefs, winemakers, and event experiences that really capture the essence of the islands,” Yamaguchi said. “Our participants are required to use local ingredients found here in the Hawaiian islands in the creation of their dishes. It’s a key element that sets our event apart from others across the country.”

Alan Wong, HFWF co-chair and chef/owner of Alan Wong’s Restaurants, including Amasia in the Grand Wailea added, “The festival gives guest chefs, visitors and residents a unique opportunity to connect through food and culture. In addition to showcasing our evolving culinary scene, together we are planting the seed for future generations of Hawai‘i farmers and chefs.

Moreover, the Hawaii Food and Wine Festival is adding a signature event here on Maui for the first time.


On Sunday, Sept. 1, the festival will present “Malama Maui” at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort & Spa in Kā‘anapali.

An evening of food and wine, attendees will enjoy reserved seating and savor a culinary tour highlighting Maui-grown products.

Featured chefs include:

  • Bev Gannon of Bev Gannon Restaurants  in Wailea and Haili’imaile;
  • Gregory Grohowski of the Hyatt Regency Maui in Kā‘anapali;
  • Hiroyuki Sakai if La Rochelle inTokyo, Japan;
  • Sheldon Simeon of Star Noodle in Lahaina;
  • Rick Tramonto of Tramonto Steak & Seafood in Wheeling, IL;
  • Marcel Vigneron of Modern Global Tasting, Inc. – Los Angeles.

Malama Maui is the kickoff event of the nine-day Hawaii Food and Wine Festival. It will be held out under the stars from 6 to 10 p.m. and tickets are already available and start at $250 per person.

VIP entrance allows admission at 5:30 p.m. and tickets are $500 per person.

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(


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