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Apr 23, 2007 12:06 AM

Maui Chow: Sugarcane & Pineapple Pancakes

Spent a week on Maui at one of the large resorts in Kaanapali. Some notables.

E&O (Lahaina): Disaster. Found a recommendation somewhere on the chow-boards. Our meal was just bland. And expensive. This is a chain.

Pacific O (Lahaina): Wife and I shared shrimp wontons, oyster tempura and grilled mahi-mahi on pasta. With a couple of drinks, our meal was $100. Ok. Nothing special. The view and seating was fantastic.

Hali'imaile General Store (on the road to Haleakela): This place was exceptional and worth the drive out. The restaurant runs an organic farm to supply greens and vegetables. The freshness of every ingredient came through.

Gazeo (Napili): Hidden away in the back of a condo-complex, we were excited to eat here after reading multiple chowhounds rave about it. This place did not disappoint. We both got the pancake combo: pineapple, banana and macadamia nut topped with whipped cream and served with coconut syrup. This was heart-stopping good. The line started at 7:15AM for the 7:30am open. Delicious.

Yee's Market (Kihei): And now for the best. Yee's is small straw-thatched shack on the side of Kihei Rd. Mr. Yee and family sell freshly picked fruit. It is dusty. It looks like it hasn't changed for at least a 50 years. Mr. Yee seemed to be surprised to be selling to a tourist. For $10 bucks, we bought guavas, mangos, strawberry bananas, a papaya and best of all, a few sections of sugarcane. I thought I'd have to rip the stiff outer-covering with my teeth to get to the sugary goodness -- but before I could even ask -- the friendly person (Ms. Yee?) pulled out a giant knife and proceeded to perform sugarcane surgery. Within a couple of minutes, the sugarcane sections had been stripped, divided in half, sliced into bite-sized chunks and deposited into a ziploc bag. This bag was handed over to me with a smile.

I walked away with a big-shit eating grin on my face. The guavas were delicious. The mangoes were sweet. The strawberry bananas tasted more like banana than strawberry. The papaya was a great breakfast treat.

But the sugarcane. Oh the sugarcane. For those of you that do not know how: you pop a chunk of sugarcane in your mouth and start chewing. The first hit of the sweet juice is as good as the last. After you've exhausted the chunk -- you spit out the thick fibers and do it again. I savored every bit. Absolutely awesome.

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  1. I will look for Yee's market next week. South Kihei Road is a few miles long; any nearby landmarks to help with finding it?

    (Also, for anyone else reading, Gazeo = Gazebo)

    1 Reply
    1. re: Jefferson

      Thanks for the correction. Gazebo it is!

      Looking at my notes, I'd written down Yee's as being located near the intersection of Kihei and Nohokai st. Look for a really run down, dusty shack with what appears to be a limited selection of fruit.

    2. Can anybody give location or landmark's for Yee's Market on Kihei Rd?

      1. Thanks for the heads-up jhulla. I did some internet searching to find this place, and it was worth it. Fantastic Golden Glow mangoes, very good Haden mangoes, passionfruit, papaya, apple bananas, chicos and (of course) sugar cane. I spent a bit more than you did, but I loaded up on Golden Glows, Hadens and papaya.

        The Golden Glows were absolutely, positively, some of the best food I've ever eaten--jaw-dropping good.

        It is on the west side of So. Kihei, near Lipoa...look for a wood shack in the middle of a dirt parking lot, you'll see a sign that says "Yee's Orchard"....then pray that they're open. We went early on a Thursday morning and nobody was there, but a passerby informed us they'd open around 11:30am. We got back about that time and stocked up. We went again just before heading to the airport on Monday afternoon, but nobody was there...perhaps she'd already sold everything for that day?

        We also had breakfast one morning at Gazebo...Mrs. Fred & I split the short stack of mac/banana pancakes and the fried rice & eggs (new one for me). Incredible food. great price and large portions. We ended up taking about half of the fried rice home and using it in our own condo-cooked scrambled eggs w/Maui onions.