We Mauians love a great meal deal when we find one.That's why word is spreading like wildfire that Black Rock Steak & Seafood at Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa in Kaanapali is extending its super red-hot kamaaina special through April 30.
All you need is a Maui driver's license to get 50 percent off all of your food during dinner hours.
"We're open seven days a week, and you may come in any time from 5:30 to 9 p.m. and get the discount," says Executive Sous Chef Conrad Aquino. "Each evening we get more and more Mauians coming in to check it out for themselves."
Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa’s Executive Sous Chef Conrad Aquino serves seafood cioppino packed with spiny lobster, tiger shrimp, scallops, mahimahi and crab in fennel-tomato broth.
The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
For instance, you may order the signature bone-in rib-eye steak with your choice of baked potato, macadamia-nut pilaf, steak fries or wasabi-and-garlic mashed potatoes along with vegetable du jour such as grilled pencil-thin asparagus, Kula tomato gratin, sauteed mushrooms or roasted zucchini (all from Kula farms).
In addition, this monumental steak plate includes one enhancement as well as one sauce, taking it over the top.
"It's 16 ounces of certified Angus beef and we cook it to your liking," says Aquino. "My favorite enhancement is the Kona-coffee rub, and my favorite sauce is the cabernet with caramelized Maui onions."
What: Black Rock Steak and Seafood Restaurant (formerly called Keka'a Terrace by day).
Where: Situated garden level of the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa in Kaanapali.
Hours:?Open for dinner nightly from 5:30 to 9.
Kamaaina deal: Those with a Maui driver's license get 50 percent off food through April 30.
Regular prices: Soups and salads cost $9 to $18; starters range from $12 to $14; entrees from $26 to $48; desserts such as banana cream pie are $9.
Wines: Choose from old world and new world selections. Cost is $9 to $14 by the glass; and $30 to $260 by the bottle.
For reservations: Call 661-0031.
The regular cost is $46, so with the Maui discount, it's $23. When you team this low price with a fabulous open-air setting with meandering steams, personalized service and a host of fun wines by the glass and the bottle, it's heaven.
I know I'll certainly be back for more, and next time, I'll order another sizzling, bone-in steak and try other enhancements such as Coleman's honey-mustard glaze, or herb and garlic butter.
Other sauce options include Black Rock guava barbecue steak sauce, or Maytag blue cheese with peppercorn.
Mauians with proper ID may also get two, 6-ounce Pacific lobster tails served with drawn butter and all of the accompaniments for $24. These lobster tails and the signature steak are the most expensive things on the entire menu.
Sound crazy? It's like you're in Las Vegas and you've just hit the jackpot.
Maui vegetarians will find a symphony of grilled vegetables with tofu and macadamia nut pilaf for the reduced price of $14; and seafood lovers from our island will want to dive into the shrimp scampi with linguine sauteed with garlic, capers, pernod, white wine, tomatoes and mushrooms for the same reasonable price.
Don't forget to top it with freshly grated reggiano-parmesano cheese. Ditto for the chicken Marsala.
Besides these great prices for locals, Black Rock Steak & Seafood offers a wonderful ambience and one of the most legendary views on island.
It's situated with sweeping sunset views of Kaanapali's most famous landmark, Pu'u Keka'a, or "black rock," a lava formation that juts into the ocean. Clint Eastwood even found it appealing enough to film it in the opening scene of the movie, "Hereafter," starring Matt Damon.
Since the Sheraton is anchored right into Black Rock, every night before sunset it sends out a lava-lava-clad man who runs along the property, lighting torches. His grand finale is a ceremonial dive off of the famous cliffs.
I don't know how many times I've seen this spectacle, but it is fun to watch each and every time.
"The Cliff Diving Ceremony has been a long-standing tradition at the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa, taking place every evening at sunset since its grand opening in 1963," says Jocelyn Brucker, the hotel's public relations manager. "The Cliff Dive Bar is the best place to enjoy this iconic ceremony and we feature live music."
So head to the Cliff Dive Bar before you settle down to dinner at Black Rock. Some of you may remember it as Keka'a Terrace, but the name has been formally changed. It boasts an intimate atmosphere and exudes modern earthiness in elements such as teak dining furniture, black-carbon table cloths and touches of candlelight.
As for the food, Executive Chef Bryan Ashlock surveyed countless patrons, and the general consensus was that the Kaanapali visitor preferred a varied selection of steak and seafood.
So Ashlock combines the straightforward All-American steak-and-seafood fare with the unexpected and fresh elements of Pacific Rim cuisine.
"Our cioppino is really popular," says the chef. "Besides our fresh fish of the day, we feature opah, monchong and shutome, to name a few."
Fun starters are crab won tons, grilled and peppered ahi and seafood bisque.
"But the signature bone-in rib-eye steak is the largest entree and locals like to order it, because it's a great deal."