Discovering the Culinary Jewels of South Maui

Discovering the Culinary Jewels of South Maui
March 15, 2024

South Maui isn’t just a paradise for beachgoers and nature enthusiasts; it’s also a haven for foodies. South Maui restaurants delight locals and visitors alike with a robust culinary scene and a fusion of global flavors. For those considering a move to Maui, the vibrant dining landscape is just one more reason to call South Maui home. This post will serve as your tour guide through the best lunch options in South Maui, ensuring you savor the local flavors and make the most out of your island living experience.

Top Lunch Spots in South Maui

When the sun is high in the sky, casting its golden glow over the azure waters, and the gentle rhythm of the waves beckons you, it’s time for a culinary adventure that harmonizes with the vibrant essence of the island life. If you plan to move to Maui, allow yourself to indulge in a selection of delectable dishes crafted with local flavors and global influences at these three exceptional lunch spots that promise an unforgettable gastronomic journey you’ll cherish.

The Oceanfront Gem – Gather on Maui

Nestled in the heart of South Maui, Gather on Maui is a culinary gem. They’re all about creating unforgettable dining experiences and celebrating the joy of coming together. Located by the Wailea Gold and Emerald Golf Courses, this revamped spot offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean, Haleakalā, and Molokini making every meal special.

Hours and Location

  • Open Daily 11:30 AM – 8:00 PM
  • Lunch: 11:30 AM – 3 PM (Limited lunch items available until 4 pm)
  • 100 Wailea Golf Club Drive Wailea, Hawaii 96753



Real Estate Proximity

Relax at South Maui’s newest hotspot, serving up a variety of cocktails, local favorites, and great happy hour deals. With a prime location near Wailea, Kihei, and Makena beaches, this ocean-view spot is your ticket to embracing Maui living.

The Local Favorite – Monkeypod Kitchen at Wailea

Founded on the belief that great meals come from quality, locally sourced ingredients, Monkeypod Kitchen by Chef Peter Merriman exemplifies sustainable dining in South Maui. This popular eatery is a favorite among locals and tourists for its dedication to the farm-to-table movement, highlighting Hawaii’s agricultural richness in every dish.

Located in Wailea, Monkeypod Kitchen offers a relaxed but elegant dining experience that captures the essence of island life. The open-air design, paired with ocean views and Hawaiian breezes, sets the stage for diners to savor the culinary delights that await.

Hours and Location

  • Every day except select holidays: 11:00AM – 10:00PM
  • Happy Hour: 3:30 PM – 5:00 PM
  • 10 Wailea Gateway Place Kihei, HI 96753



Real Estate Proximity

From the moment you step into Monkeypod Kitchen, you’re greeted with the warm hospitality that Hawaii is known for. The menu is an exploration of local cuisine reimagined through the inventive culinary techniques of Chef Merriman and his team.

Diners can enjoy a diverse menu, from wood-fired pizzas with local ingredients to entrees mixing Hawaiian and global flavors. The inviting setting is perfect for family lunches, romantic dinners, or happy hour with friends enjoying Monkeypod’s mai tais and live music.

The Island’s Brewing Paradise – Maui Brewing Company

In 2005, Maui Brewing Company started as a small seven-barrel brewery in Kahana, driven by a love for craft beer and deep ties to Maui’s culture and environment. It has since become Hawaii’s largest craft brewery, focusing on sustainability, community, and the aloha spirit. The Kihei location now operates as a brewpub, offering a diverse menu that complements their island-made beers.

Beer lovers, looking for a unique lunch spot? Maui Brewing Company – Kihei is a must-visit! With craft beers brewed on-site, reflecting the island’s flavors, and a diverse menu to please every palate. Locally crafted beers and tasty cuisine – a perfect midday break choice. For those eyeing investment opportunities in South Maui, the brewery adds another compelling reason to check out the area. Its focus on sustainability and community involvement aligns with values many buyers and investors prioritize, a unique benefit of being in South Maui.

Hours and Location

  • Daily 11:30am – 10:00pm
  • 605 Lipoa Pkwy Kihei, Maui, HI 96753



Real Estate Proximity

Maui Brewing Company is now Hawaii’s largest craft brewery known for its exceptional beers and dedication to sustainability. Co-founders Garrett Marrero and Melanie Oxley have led the company towards eco-friendly practices, earning accolades like the 2017 Small Business Person(s) of the Year. Inspired by Hawaii’s culture and environment, Maui Brewing Co. sets a high standard in craft beer, prioritizing quality and innovation.

From its inception, Maui Brewing Company has been a pioneer in environmental stewardship within the brewing industry. Recognizing the importance of sustainability, Maui Brewing was one of the first craft brewers to package its beers in recyclable aluminum cans, acknowledging the material as the #1 recycled beverage container in the U.S. Their canning line, capable of filling and seaming approximately 500 cans per minute, is a testament to the company’s commitment to efficiency and sustainability.

The Seafood Expert – Nalu’s South Shore Grill

Nestled in the heart of Kihei at the Azeka Shopping Center, Nalu’s South Shore Grill has quickly established itself as a beloved eatery among both locals and visitors since its opening. What began as a modest endeavor to offer fresh, locally sourced food in a comfortable, welcoming setting has blossomed into a culinary destination. Today, Nalu’s is celebrated for its commitment to community, sustainability, and the aloha spirit.

At Nalu’s, guests can expect a menu teeming with diverse flavors, featuring dishes that cater to a wide range of dietary preferences including vegan and vegetarian options. The restaurant’s use of organic and locally sourced ingredients supports local agriculture and ensures that each dish served is of the highest quality and freshness. From their renowned Acai Bowls to the Island Fresh Fish Tacos, each item on the menu is a testament to Nalu’s dedication to healthful, flavorful dining.

Hours and Location

  • 7 days a week 8 AM – 9 PM
  • Happy Hour everyday 3 PM – 6 PM
  • Azeka Shopping Center – Makai 1280 South Kihei Road, Ste 132, Kihei



Real Estate Proximity

What sets Nalu’s apart and makes it an excellent place for lunch is not just its culinary offerings, but also the atmosphere it cultivates. The open-air dining experience allows patrons to enjoy the gentle Hawaiian breezes and warm sun, creating an ambiance that perfectly complements the island-inspired dishes. Coupled with live music events that feature local artists, dining at Nalu’s offers both a feast for the palate and the soul, making it a must-visit spot for anyone looking to experience the essence of Maui.

The Coastal Charm – Seascape Maalaea Restaurant – Maalaea

Welcome to Seascape! It’s where sustainable dining and breathtaking views come together to create an unforgettable culinary journey. Nestled along the shores of Maui, Seascape Restaurant is your go-to spot for top-notch beachfront dining, especially famous for its amazing seafood.

Get ready to savor the award-winning island cuisine, carefully crafted with the freshest seafood sourced daily from the local fishermen at Māʻalaea Harbor. And let’s not forget about the talented Executive Chef Enrique “Henry” Tariga, a James Beard Foundation Rising Star Award winner. His unique blend of Hawaiian and Asian influences will surely tantalize your taste buds!

Hours and Location

  • Monday – Friday 11:00 AM – 2:00 PM
  • 192 Māʻalaea Road Wailuku, Hawaiʻi 96793



Real Estate Proximity

Seascape Maalaea Restaurant is right at the Maui Ocean Center, making your dining experience extra special, especially if you’re into South Maui real estate. Being so close means you get the best of both worlds – amazing food and the chance to explore one of Maui’s top attractions.

The restaurant is all about sustainability, not just in the kitchen. They team up with local fishermen to bring us the freshest, most eco-friendly seafood that supports the island’s fishing community. It’s their way of showing love for Maui’s natural beauty and resources. By backing local farmers and island sustainability, they serve up farm-fresh produce and grass-fed proteins in their seasonal menu.

Tips for Enjoying Lunch in South Maui

Timing is everything when it comes to enjoying your South Maui lunch adventure. To make the most of your experience, consider these dining tips:

Best Times to Visit: Midday can be busy with beachgoers and tourists alike. Aim for an early lunch (11 am to noon) or a late one (1 to 2 pm) for a more relaxed experience.

Reservation Tips: While some spots are more casual and don’t take reservations if you’re eyeing a particular local favorite, it’s always best to call ahead and secure your spot. If you’re a group of six or more, it’s always best to call ahead.

Try Something New: South Maui is home to many diverse and delicious cuisines. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try a new dish or cuisine. You might just discover a new favorite!

Tip Like a Local: A 15%-20% tip is customary in Hawaii. But if you’re feeling generous, especially after an exceptional meal or service, go ahead and tip more. It’s always appreciated by the hardworking staff.

Dietary Options: South Maui is known for its variety of eateries, offering everything from farm-to-table cuisine to traditional Hawaiian dishes. Many places cater to dietary restrictions, but it’s always good to check beforehand to ensure there’s something for everyone.

Dress Appropriately: Keep in mind that many South Maui restaurants have an open-air dining setup, so dress accordingly. Go for lightweight and comfortable clothing to beat the heat while still looking stylish.

Support Local: Many restaurants in South Maui pride themselves on using locally sourced ingredients, supporting the island’s economy and sustainability efforts. By dining at these establishments, you’re not only enjoying a delicious meal but also giving back to the community.

Parking: Depending on where you dine, parking can be limited in some areas. Consider carpooling or using alternative transportation options like Uber or Lyft if you plan on indulging in some tropical cocktails during your lunch outing.

Take a Walk: After lunch, take a stroll through the nearby shopping centers and streets to explore the local boutiques or walk on the beach to soak up some of that island sun.

Explore the Area: South Maui is home to stunning beaches, scenic hikes, and charming towns. Take advantage of your visit by exploring the area before or after your lunch. It’s a great way to work up an appetite and experience more of what this beautiful island has to offer.


South Maui’s lunch scene is as diverse and colorful as the reefs just off its shores. From gourmet oceanfront dining in Wailea to quick vegan bites in Lahaina, your midday meal on the island is sure to be memorable. For those considering a move to South Maui, these culinary delights offer a tantalizing glimpse into the everyday pleasures of life in this Pacific gem.

Ready to explore the world of South Maui dining even further? Contact us and learn more about the communities and homes that could turn your island dreams into a delicious reality. Take the first step towards owning a piece of Maui and plan your visit to these lunch spots today!

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