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Jan 16, 2010 11:57 AM

ONO gelato- Hana highway Maui

Has anyone been there? it looks good, and where exactly is it located- closer to Hana or Paia?

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  1. Ono is located in Paia, and I've been to the location in Lahaina. Unless you're a big gelato connoisseur, it's fine. I found the sorbets to be kind of lacking (I sampled several), but enjoyed my husband's milk-based gelato.

    8 Replies
    1. re: Miss Needle

      Meaning...if we are not in the area, it's nothing to talk about?
      Do you live in Maui... you have great information!!
      Did they have a variety of interesting flavours at least (exotic tropical fruits), or just the standard ones?

      1. re: Petoncles_56

        The Paia location may be different. But when I was at the Lahaina location, they didn't have the entire selection of flavors that one may read when going on their website. For gelato, all of the flavors were pretty much what a lot of people can get at other places outside of Hawaii -- chocolate, cappuccino, vanilla, etc. -- didn't see any Komodo donut or quark, etc. Of course, this could have been the particular day I was there. They had more exotic flavors in the sorbet selection which is why I got sorbet instead. I can easily get tiramisu gelato in my hometown. Still, all of the flavors that are on the website were not represented in the sorbet case when I was there. And personally, I thought the quality of sorbets was OK, but not great. But other people will probably disagree with me.

        I'm from NYC and we have quite a few gelato shops. One of my favorite gelato shops is Grom (which is a chain in Italy and has awesome sorbet). If you're from an area with really good gelato, Ono may not be such a big deal. Perhaps it would have been more exciting for me if they had some of the more "exotic" flavors in that day -- though I'm not sure if I would ever order the Kula onion -- still have bad memories of my durian ice cream incident.

        1. re: Miss Needle

          Thanks soo much miss needle. this really helps, as I think we might opt out of visiting. We're sort of Gelato snobs, having tasted the real thing in Italy (I',m sure being in New York also give you a pretty decent authenticity of taste).
          If I were to ask you your top 5 places to visit, to eat in Maui , (either 'cheap' or expensive) in Maui, what would you say? Also, is there such a thing as 'real' authentic luau food any more? last time we visited Maui, the luau food was average at best. We really want some good poi, (we've heard a tru luau is nothing without he'e (sorry about the spelling). which is basically octupus in coconut milk.....any thoughts?

          1. re: Petoncles_56

            Hi Petoncles! I'm just a tourist here so my viewpoint is just from the trip I took recently. Have you seen my report?


            I found Maui to be on the pricey side. You know Maui is expensive when you fly to Oahu after your Maui trip and exclaim how cheap everything is! Top 5 places to eat? I think a lot of it is going to depend on your location as Maui isn't as small as Oahu. My favorite part of Maui culinary wise for me was Upcountry. I would eat at Hali'imaile General Store and Mama's Fish House again. I would make the trip to Surfing Goat Dairy and delve further into the goat cheese stuff. I loved Spago's appetizers and bread basket. I think part of me being underwhelmed by the entrees may have been because the restaurant was awfully busy as I was there during the holidays. So I think Spago may be a good choice. I haven't eaten at Roy's in Maui but thought the Roy's in Oahu at Hawaii Kai was excellent. So perhaps that would be a good option as well. I think there are two locations -- one in West Maui and one in S. Maui.

            In terms of inexpensive meals, that's a bit harder. In Oahu, I found a lot of inexpensive food that I thought was so awesome. I found it a bit more difficult to find the culinary bargains here. My favorite inexpensive meal would probably be a supermarket lunch of poke and chips with some musubi to round it out eaten on a beach. And while I thought my dinner at Cafe O'Lei was on the pricey side (especially for the quality) at $30-something an entree, I believe a lot of the lunch stuff is around $10.

            I didn't do any luaus in Maui or Oahu (solely for the reason I've heard the food is mediocre). The only place I came across traditional Hawaiian food was at Takamiya Market in Wailuku. They did have poi (it may have been in the fridge case), but I don't remember seeing an octopus laulau (I think that may be the spelling). They may have had a squid laulau though (can't quite recall). But I think that would be your best bet.

            There were more places in Oahu I found for traditional Hawaiian food. But I don't recall seeing any restaurant that would carry something like laulau in Maui. Personally, I really liked traditional Hawaiian food (well, except for poi). But I don't think many tourists would be so into it -- they would probably get their requisite fill at a luau. So that is why I think I had some difficulty finding that type of restaurant in Maui as it is pretty touristy. There may be something very off the beaten path that most tourists may not really be aware of. But I didn't see anything when I was there.

            1. re: Miss Needle

              This is Great information Miss. Needle.

              I agree Maui is amazingly expensive. We did read your previous post, and we will take some of your suggestions for sure.

              by the way what was in the bread basket at Spago that you liked so much? did you have dessert?

              1. re: Petoncles_56

                Oops for my prior post. It's squid lu'au.

                I really liked the soft pillowy maui onion rolls and the parmesan crisps at Spago. I did have dessert (it should be on the link). I didn't really find anything that interesting on the dessert menu. I kept looking and looking and half-heartedly ordered something because the waitress said it was the chef specialty. In retrospect, I probably should have just skipped it that night (as I was having a dessert almost every single night).

                1. re: Miss Needle

                  Dear Miss Needle, Perhaps (part of) your Ohau report might inaugurate the new Hawaii board!

                  1. re: Joebob

                    Thanks for the gentle reminder. Been kind of busy. But I'm starting the installments.

    2. Yeah, it's a pretty good place. As far as ice cream/gelato goes this is one of the better ones.