A Hand-Selected List of Where to Eat in Kihei

Best Restaurants in Kihei

In a place jam-packed with delectable restaurants, narrowing things down to a select few is easier said than done. However, if you’re going to South Maui and plan on dining in Kihei – which I highly recommend – there are a handful of places that deserve your attention. Below, I highlight seven of the best restaurants in Kihei. Whether you visit one or several, you’re sure to come away with a full belly and a big smile.

Fork and Salad

Located in the heart of Kihei on South Kihei Road, this is the place to go for amazing, customized salads. A popular local haunt, this modern, fast-casual eatery is famous for its build-your-own salads. With a farm-to-table sensibility, Fork and Salad epitomizes handcrafted, fresh, local fare at its best.

As you construct your custom creation, you can choose from dozens of fresh ingredients and watch the salad being made before your eyes. Start with a salad base of kale, spring mix, arugula, spinach, or romaine. Next, customize your salad by selecting from more than 50 fresh ingredients, including tomatoes, papaya, beets, brussels sprouts, and pineapple.

For protein, choose from meats like ahi tuna, shrimp, and shredded chicken or vegetarian-friendly choices like falafel and quinoa. Top it all off with cheeses ranging from blue to cheddar, nuts like cashews and almonds, and extras like flaxseed and wasabi peas.

This charming restaurant has indoor and outdoor seating, and you can even place your order via app ahead of time, so it’s ready for you when you arrive!

Koiso Sushi Bar

Situated in the back of Dolphin Plaza, walking distance from the Ke Alii Ocean Villas, this wildly popular local sushi joint has a surprisingly unassuming exterior. Koiso Sushi Bar doesn’t have to bother with bells and whistles; its sumptuous, authentic sushi cuisine speaks for itself.

The brainchild of sushi master Hiro-san, Koiso has famously limited seating – a single table for four and an L-shaped sushi bar with 12 seats. Therefore, be prepared to wait a bit – it will be well worth it!

The restaurant relies on locally caught fresh fish as well as fish flown in daily straight from Japan. You won’t find complex rolls with crazy names; instead, you’ll find classic nigiri and sashimi creations. Make sure to sample the miso soup, resplendent with a clear, light broth and earthy mushrooms, and try to strike up a conversation with the friendly Hiro-san for an incredibly memorable time.

Roasted Chiles

Finding authentic Mexican cuisine in South Maui is easier said than done. When in doubt, head straight to Roasted Chiles in the Azeka Shopping Center. This family-run establishment features cuisine and furnishings straight from Mexico City, making you feel like you’ve been whisked far away from the islands.

Everything on the menu is made in-house and with extra-special care and attention. Grandma’s Classic Chicken Mole, for instance, features more than 25 ingredients!

The airy space within the restaurant is complemented by vaulted ceilings, a chic granite bar, woven leather chairs, and eye-catching wall décor. Service is always warm, friendly, and personable. From the creamy langostino enchiladas to the toritos – jalapeno-popper-style Chile Rellenos with shrimp – you can’t go wrong with this unforgettable Kihei institution.

Kihei Caffe

Discover breakfast diner eating, Hawaii-style, at Kihei Caffe. Located in the Kalama Park Village Shopping Center, this popular local breakfast haunt has been in business since 1998. Featuring a laid-back, unassuming vibe and style, the café offers sidewalk seating, a chalkboard menu, and hearty portions of mouth-watering comfort foods like Belgian waffles, huevos rancheros, and pork fried rice and eggs.

Breakfast is served all day, and I highly recommend the loco moco if you're looking for a local specialty.  The pancakes are also great, choose from banana macadamia nut pancakes, chocolate chip pancakes, or pineapple coconut pancakes – and be sure to smother yours with their signature warm coconut syrup.

This place gets pretty crowded and the long line can be a little daunting, but you’re sure to find the wait is well worth it.

Maui Thai Bistro

When it comes to Thai food on Maui, you have lots of options. In Kihei, though, you’d be hard-pressed to find a tastier or more inviting option than Maui Thai Bistro. Located in the Rainbow Mall, across from the Royal Mauian, this eatery specializes in artisanal, authentic, contemporary Thai cuisine in a bistro setting. Chef Prakong delivers a remarkable array of options, many featuring surprising Hawaiian fusion twists.

This lovely place is best known for its Thai single-dish lunches and classic dinner options. All of the usual noodles and curries are available, along with many unique choices. Cocktails and appetizers are served at the Brasserie, the eatery’s bar area, and there are plenty of options for vegetarians and vegans.

They also make one of the best Oxtails soups on Maui. Oxtail soup is a Hawaiian favorite and will certainly hit the spot. 

5 Palms

Located inside the Mana Kai Maui Resort, 5 Palms offers innovative Maui coastal cuisine with Pacific Rim influences. With a focus on fresh, local fare, the menu is filled with fresh island fish and delectable fruits and veggies plucked from Upcountry farms. The cuisine ranges from American to Japanese, and it even crosses into fusion territory in many instances.

Elegant yet casual, this Kihei mainstay -- one of the best restaurants in Kihei -- offers lovely views of the Keawakapu Beach coastline. It’s made up of entirely open-air dining rooms and includes a first-rate sushi bar.

Options are eclectic, ranging from kale salad to ahi poke to butternut squash ravioli. This is also a great place to stop for cocktails; if you do, be sure to sample the Mad Maui Mule or Ocean’s 5.

Maui Brewing Company

Last but not least, Maui Brewing Company at 605 Lipoa Parkway, near the Hokulani Golf Villas in North Kihei, is a must-visit for anyone who enjoys handcrafted lagers and ales. Although the brewery is best known for its brews, it offers a comprehensive menu of popular bar eats that are sure to keep body and soul together.

This welcoming local eatery has something for everyone, from appetizers like edamame and nachos to craft pizzas, burgers, and salads.

Founded in 2005, this Kihei mainstay offers outdoor garden seating, open-air interiors, and a bona fide beer garden. More than 35 craft and specialty beers are on tap, including options from small, local breweries. Salads can be customized with proteins ranging from veggie burgers to chicken, and there are lots of unique menu items. A great case in point is the Bikini Blonde fish and chips, one of the tastiest options on the menu.

As you can see, you don’t have to spend a fortune or limit yourself to upscale dining establishments to eat well in Kihei. In fact, some of the best restaurants in Kihei are among the simplest and least assuming. These eateries stand out for offering delicious food, fair prices, welcoming atmospheres, and friendly, happy employees. Be sure to check them out the next time you’re in Kihei!

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