the north face katavi Explore the North shore
Kimo Beezley (in photo) works the oven at Flatbread Company and then the pizza is sliced (second photo). The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photos
Last week, I got out of my Central Maui groove and drove past salt sprayed Hookipa Beach Park with its mountainous surf, dipped into verdant Maliko Gulch with views of Haleakala and climbed and took a right on Haiku Road past towering Cook Pines. My first stop was in the Aloha Aina Center in Haiku.
Who saw the movie, Big Fat Greek Wedding? The father of the bride hilariously connected everything to Greek culture. When I mentioned this to The Greek Oven Maui owner Adonis Kapsalis, he laughed. But he does agree with the film character.
heard of Hippocrates, yes? the Athens native asked. said, food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. The Mediterranean Diet is the best in the world. On Ikaria Island, for instance, scientists study people who live well beyond 100. The reasons are their diet and that they don wear watches. met his South American wife Santuzza Kapsalis when he lived in Brazil. The couple moved here six years ago to be Realtors. But the restaurant bug bit and they owned The Greek Oven since March.
Let their food be your medicine with vegan moussaka that is savory and light with mushrooms, lentils and quinoa that imitates meat with potatoes and eggplant in a silky cashew bechamel sauce with gluten free flour. It really casual. You order at the counter and we serve on biodegradable plates. It table service with real silverware and an upgraded menu. We make everything here from tzatziki to hummus to tomato sauce, he says.
Adonis is proud of the Nobriga Ranch beef he uses from Makawao and the Australian lamb he imports for the gyros, pitas, meatballs, moussaka and kebabs.
do gyros but we use real lamb, not like you see at the fast food places. We bake it in the oven for three hours with lemon and Greek olive oil and oregano from our house on Aegina Island where my dad grew up. It unbelievable. In Greece, we have really good weather. Everything is just perfect. It a blessed land, he adds.
Salads burst with spinach and figs; beets, carrots and goat cheese; and The Original Greek with local tomatoes and cucumbers and Kalamata olives, feta cheese and olive oil from the Sparta region of Greece along with capers, red onions and Kapsalis family oregano.
Vegan moussaka is all the rage at The Greek Oven Maui. The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
put lettuce on Greek salads but that not how it made in my country, Adonis says.
The Greek platter is also quite popular as you get tastes of a variety of popular items and you may substitute the pita for house baked, gluten free sourdough.
Vegetarian taste buds will be transported to the sky where Zeus rules with bruschetta Mykonos style; saganaki of pan fried cheese with fresh lemon juice and grilled pita; pappardelle of zucchini noodles and veggies; and crushed potatoes Kretan style.
parchment wrapped mahimahi Paros style is baked with fresh organic local veggies and our roasted lamb comes with apple and potato mash. People are very surprised about the mash. The apple pie recipe is of my mother with whole grain and spelt flours. is a chef who studied culinary art in Italy and then chocolate making in New York. Do try her chocolate fudge delight with vegan coconut ice cream. Keiki will find their own menu and the restaurant may be reserved for your private parties at night.
Owners Adonis and Santuzza Kapsalis flank employees Toria Rosaga (holding plate) and Nicole DeRose Bianchi in the intimate dining room. The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
For more details or reservations, call 575 9752.
Pizza has never been the same in Paia since Flatbread Company opened 10 years ago. seven days a week.
have a seating capacity 131 on the ground floor and 20 to 22 diners upstairs, says Managing Partner Erik Hutchinson, who worked his way up from starting as a dishwasher back in the day.
The Flatbread franchise started on the East Coast and has locations from Providence, R. I. to Salem, Mass. But Paia is the setting, states the website. It got breezes and rollicking surf in a town full of characters and karma. No lack of soul here. The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
Sales of IPA brews match the rapid fire baking of the Mopsy Kalua Pork pizzas and the Pele Pesto pies.
hour is happy hour, Hutch says. try to keep our focus on supporting the community. For instance, each Tuesday, we allow a different nonprofit to bring in silent auction items. A portion of pizza sales goes to the organization. It a great opportunity for them to get exposure. addition, people flock to Flatbread like bees to a hive as every menu item screams of being organic, fresh, sustainable and oh so good for you. The many local farms from where ingredients are procured are listed on the chalkboard.
Dough is made from 100 percent organic wheat milled into white flour. Meats range from nitrite free pepperoni to free range pork and chicken to hormone free maple fennel sausage.
Mozzarella is premium whole milk. Fresh organic tomatoes are sweetened in a big pot with real maple syrup. Organic onions are caramelized in a humungous cast iron skillet. But the earthen oven that exudes aromatic kiawe wood aromas is the centerpiece that transports you straight to hobbit land.
Her cuisine is authentic and exotic. The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
of our organic wood fired pizzas are made in our primitive clay oven, explains Hutch. we can create any of our pizzas to be gluten free. But because there is flour everywhere, true celiacs should note that it is a heavily glutenated environment. of the salads are local and organic. You may start your meal with Kumu Farm mesclun and sweet leaf lettuces with green papaya by Ono Organic Farms and sprouts from Kahanu Aina Farm with housemade Maui pineapple vinaigrette.
There never is an extra charge for extra sides of dressings, sauces, parmesan cheese and olive oil. Flatbread Company also provides free refills on coffee, fountain sodas and ice teas.
a family friendly restaurant. Kids can grab crayons and they make the menu covers for us, says Hutch.