TONGUE IN CHEEK . . . Sometimes, or should I say oftentimes, Maui restaurants don't open on schedule, and we have to take it with a grain of salt. Tongue-in-cheek humor works, too.
Especially when we're talking about KISS rockers Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons, the latter world-famous for sticking out his tongue.
The point is, Rock 'n' Brews in the old Jacques Bistro spot in Paia will proceed ahead with a private blessing this weekend, but Simmon's partners will only say that they will "open our doors soon."
Artist Al Lagunero (left) and Rock ‘n’ Brews owners Chrystie and Mark Blietz are hoping to open the new Paia restaurant “soon.”
The Maui News / CARLA TRACY photo
Maui artist Al Lagunero will put his cultural renderings on the floor, the tables, the walls and on T-shirts, making it a "place where people can come and talk story, a restaurant infused with the multicultural elements in Paia with a big nod toward Hawaiiana."
There will be 52 beers on tap, nine gluten free; along with gluten-free pizzas and lots of salads. Specials will be poke tacos with a side of Asian slaw; build-your-own loco mocos; and coconut popcorn shrimp.
"We'll try to use as much local produce as we can," says Chrystie Blietz, who with husband Mark Blietz, own a bunch of restaurants in Southern California, from Manhattan Beach to El Segundo.
Got restaurant / dining-event scoop? Call Dining Editor Carla Tracy at 242-6342; or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now Mauians, Chrystie taught at Doris Todd preschool, where their daughters attended; and Mark was a palm tree and orchid farmer in Haiku. They'll also present a check to Paia Youth & Cultural Center after the opening, and everyone should smile about that.
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FOR ROBERT BURNS FANS . . . Food and drink specials in honor of Scotland's best-known poet, Robert Burns, will entice you on Saturday in Paia at the new Dazoo Restaurant. Born in 1759, Burns penned the poem and song, "Auld Lang Syne. Some of his poetry works will be recited by owner and native Scotsman David Law, who spent the summer there last year.
Savor a three-course prix-fixe dinner with potato scones, roasted-root-and-leek soup, and Maui-style or vegetarian haggis with herbed butter, tatties (mashed potatoes) and neeps (caramelized turnips).
The Maui-style haggis blends Scottish oats cooked with spices and ground lamb, instead of the, er, more traditional version. Dessert is sundae and tablet - a fudge like candy. Cost is $35 a person. Additional items are offered a la carte. Call 579-9999.
Speaking of that bag-piping country, Four Seasons Resort Lanai's Lodge at Koele is like the Scottish Highlands, minus the Loch Ness monster.
It just added new craft beers at The Terrace and The Bar, and you may toast to Robert Burns with a Harviestoun from Alva in central Scotland.
Or sip imperial porter Hitachino from Ibaraki, Japan; and Belgian Witbier brewed with coriander, orange peel and nutmeg. We also hear that Chef Eren Guryel just launched a new blindfolded culinary experience and a new grill menu with meat and fish.
"Hawaii is rich in agriculture with diverse food traditions and we want to continue to offer guests a culinary experience true to the destination while keeping things fresh and new," says Tom Roelens, general manager of Four Seasons Resorts Lanai.
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BITS AND PIECES . . . The Rotary Club of Kihei Sunrise will host a Whale Watch/Snorkel Sail on Saturday, Feb. 8. Hop aboard the Four Winds II sailing vessel from 1:30 to 5 p.m. for humpback whale sightings, snorkeling, full barbecue lunch, beer, wine and soft drinks and the sounds of DJ, "Dr. Love."
"Ticket price is $65," says organizer Ed Corbett. "Space is limited to 120 passengers. Proceeds benefit community service projects for youth of Kihei." Visit the website at www.kiheirotary.org or call 264-3468.
Queen Ka'ahumanu Center announces Tikiz Shave Ice and Snow Shakes will open in February in a free-standing building in the food court.
"We are strong supporters of our local communities," says Vince Rosano. "When hired for local fundraising events, we give back 20 percent of our proceeds to help with the fundraising efforts."