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Jun 3, 2007 01:53 PM

Lanai -- any recent experiences?

Hello all,

I'm headed to Lanai this summer for a week. Staying at the Manele Bay property.

Does anybody have any recent food experiences on this island? In particular, since the 4 Seasons took over the 2 major hotels?

Looking for all types of meals (casual, cheap, expensive, fancy, romantic, quick). Meals on or off the hotel properties.

Most important thing: value; whether its a $7 sandwich that was "worth it" or a $50 entree that was "worth it."

Thanks in advance.

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  1. Our big extended family group, on vacation in Wailea, took a daytrip to Lana'i earlier this week. After our guided tour, we planned to eat lunch at the Lodge at Koele, but after we talked about our food preferences our guide suggested we should skip the Four Seasons restaurants and instead check out one of the casual places in town. We ended up having a delightful "plate lunch" experience meal at Blue Ginger--very good mahi mahi, hefty breaded fried shrimps, nice teriyaki and fried shrimp. PayOrPlay Jr. loved his saimin, studded with cabbage, surimi, and loads of Spam. They had some great looking ensaymadas and other pastries for sale but we were too stuffed to try them. We did end up buying some ice cream at the town's only ice cream stand, across Dole Park--not bad, notably a Hawaiian spumoni with pistachio and pineapple ice creams and candied cherries.

    Since Lana'i's population is overwhelmingly Filipino-ancestry you'd expect some Filipino food but (according to our guide and the concierges here on Maui) there ain't none, except for the aforesaid ensaymadas and a very few other food items.

    We didn't try it since it's only open for dinner but our guide and just about everyone else we've asked says the best restaurant in town is Henry Clay's, in the Hotel Lanai--the eponymous chef is from New Orleans and the menu has some creole items and other good sounding stuff. We did walk in and take a look (easy enough to do when walking the four or so blocks that comprise downtown Lanai City)--it looked comfy and certainly worth a try if you're there. Just be careful of the weird shuttle policies when traveling to any site other than the hotels, and make sure you get your voucher or you will be soaked for transit fees traveling up and down the mountain.)

    Honestly have not heard much encouraging reports about the food at either Four Seasons hotel although we did visit Koele and it is gorgeous.

    We thought Lanai was quite interesting and a bit atypical of Hawaii; I hope you enjoy the trip and please report back.

    1. My brother was just at Manele & said the food at the golf course is still good & the view still fantastic!

      1. I used to go over all the time and have stayed at both places but not since the FS took ownership. At Koele they used to have a really good venison pastrami sandwich whether they still do or not in unknown to me. I used to reallyl ike to eat at both golf clubhouse restaurants too, great views as Torta has said and the food was good too. The Manele one had great homemade potato chips and good fish sandwiches.