This was hands down my favorite meal of the summer, perhaps my favorite meal in years. I cannot remember the last time my taste buds rejoiced the way they did with this meal. We were in Maui on vacation and had decided to hike to a waterfall that morning. We were in gym shorts and t-shirts and probably could have used a good shower after the hike and the swim in the waterfall but we were all really hungry and remembered passing a cool restaurant on the drive up to the waterfall. We decided we would stop on the way back for lunch and hope there wasn’t a dress code.
The place was called Mama’s Fish House and happened to be sitting on one of the most beautiful beaches I have ever seen. The view was absolutely breathtaking. I could have stayed there all day. The restaurant is open air and sits on it’s own private beach. Between the ocean breezes, the view and the soft Hawaiian music playing in the background, I felt like I was in heaven. Mama’s Fish House is also one of the fancier restaurants on Maui. We were underdressed to say the least. It’s the kind of place you wear your best to and you definitely don’t wear your workout clothes after schlepping up a mountain and swimming in questionable, murky (freezing) water. Nonetheless, they sat us and no one questioned our attire.
I won’t lie, the food is expensive and I had my doubts about whether it would be worthy of such a price. Even though the view was incredible and the restaurant was beautiful, it’s really all about the food right? I ordered the fresh fish in penang curry and held my breath. They brought out tomato ginger bisque shooters and freshly baked bread for the table to start. The soup was incredible. I could have eaten bowls of the stuff and the bread was the perfect accompaniment. Although I tried my hardest to be polite at such a fancy restaurant, I can’t ever resist dunking bread in soup. It’s the best way to eat it! Don’t worry, I did it discreetly so nobody saw.
After we devoured our soup and 2 loaves of bread, the entrees finally arrived. My dish was pretty to look at and smelled divine. It was also served with a variety of toppings and chutneys on the side in little white, porcelain spoons. I was pleased to see that it wasn’t a teeny tiny portion either and it didn’t look like overly fussy food, which some fancy restaurants are famous for. After I took the first bite, I was hooked. The ahi was cooked perfectly and the penang curry was creamy and bursting with flavor, but not overpowering. The taste was unique, yet familiar. My tastebuds rejoiced, as I already mentioned. I ate the entire thing. All the toppings and chutneys too. If we still had bread on our table, I would have mopped up the last bits of curry on the plate but even without the spongey bread, I managed to completely clean the plate.
It was totally, 100% worth it. Yes, it was expensive and some people probably wouldn’t dream of spending what I spent on that lunch. But, for me, there’s almost nothing that compares to a really amazing meal and this was certainly one of those. It’s not something I could justify everyday, but when you’re on vacation in Maui I think it’s okay to splurge a little right? I wholeheartedly enjoyed my experience from start to finish at Mama’s Fish House and the memory lives on in my mind so I would say that’s money well spent.
…An unbelievably delicious dish to say the least.
Oh, and did I mention we got dessert?