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Reader Reviews

Since we first started publishing Top Maui Restaurants in 2005, we have helped tens of thousands of people with our restaurant reviews. We get reviewed as well ... by our readers.

If you would like to be included here, please send us your comment.

What Locals and Visitors Say About Top Maui Restaurants:

"Much much thanks for the book - my wife was reading excerpts to me while we were returning to Kapaua after buying the book at Costco. You hit every one of the many restaurants we visited on the nail. We were
wondering if you were somehow dining with us!

Thanks muchly - only regret was not getting the book sooner."


"We've been vacationing in Maui for the last five years and have started to rely on your book so much --it's been wonderful. Right on the money with all your recommendations!!! Thank you."


"Thank you for the superb book. A true value for the money. Well written, easy to understand and informative. Many of your reviews have our mouth watering!!"

Todd & Carole

"I just downloaded your book and will be using it to guide me when I visit in September. I visit almost every year and usually find some good places to eat, however, I find your guide book such a wonderful read that I am going to use it heavily during my visit."


"Your book has been a lifesaver this week, and we've had some great, affordable meals---thanks to you."


"Your book has been a lifesaver this week, and we've had some great, affordable meals---thanks to you."


"This book was recommended to me when I was purchasing the Maui Revealed guidebook. At first I was a bit skeptical about purchasing a guide boook for restaurants when there are so many restaurant reviews on the internet at no cost, but I decided to purchase it for our recent trip to Maui.

I looked it over ahead of time and got a general idea of what restaurants I would like to try. While in Maui I used the book extensively by location, type of cuisine, and cost. What I found was that every single restaurant we tried that was recommend in the book was an enjoyable experience. I would recommend this book to other travelers to Maui. "


"We've been to Maui many times, most recently in February this year. Your guide helped us find some gems that we hadn't previously dined at. I purchased both the on-line copy for my Kindle as well as your hardcover edition."


"I DO NOT LIKE THIS BOOK!!!!!!!! I love it. 2 years ago I learned the hard way that when vacationing in an expensive area like Marco Island near Naples Florida. The restaurants were very expensive and at least 50% were serving microwaved frozen foods It was horrible. My lovely wife and I started to argue over our dining choices.That is no dream vacation.So Last year when going to Rome I learned to research the restaurants on Trip Advisor and found the reviews to be accurate.However this was very time consuming and you have to plan where you will be in the city at any given time. This cuts out spontanaeity out of your trip. After reading Molly;s introduction I was hooked. What a lovely story it reminded me of why I married Janice and made me realize why we go on vaca and why we dine out we love each other and want to reconnect over a lovely meal witch nurturers our relationship.I read the reviews and picked a restaurant out then went to the internet and found the reviews to be almost word for word the same comments as Molly and James.What a time saver!! And they list choices by location and price range so one time you can quickly find a good cheap lunch right where you are on the island and an other time you can find that special dinner with a view that wil be a choice our kids will like to. Thank you Molly and James for writing this book!"


"My wife and I own two vacation rental condos in Kihei which we visit 2-3 times each year. I just bought this book as a digital download a couple of days ago and it is fanstastic. I started by reviewing our favorite places as well as some expensive disappointments we have been to, and their assessments were right in line with what we thought. That has given me the trust to try their recommendations later this week and on future trips.

I am buying two paperback versions to keep in our condos for our guests to use. This is a book that is fun to sit and read if you are a "foodie" who likes to read food magazines and books, or likes to watch Food Network TV shows. Since we're in Kihei we're heavy on Kihei-Wailea eating with the occasional trip to Lahaina-Kaanapali-Kapalua, and this will be our guide to choose excellent food on those trips.

If you are going to visit Maui, I suggest you buy this book a month in advance, plus get a great guidebook (we like "Maui Revealed" even though we have minor disagreements on the occasional review-it's fanstastic for snorkeling beaches, hiking, and other things to do on Maui...) and plan ahaead. It's amazing how quickly a week can go and you don't want to waste your time on bad foods or crummy day trips.

Their inexpensive-moderate restaurant recommendations are helpful, and selecting one great "cost is no object" romantic treat makes this book completely worthwhile. On our last several trips to Maui we have spent well north of $200 for dinner for two at high-end restaurants that left us completely disappointed. Ouch. It won't happen again! Buy it and enjoy!"


"Wow! Love your book, your blog, your video, and your spirit! We love Maui and will be taking my mother in law this June. Our food experiences in Maui have been awful! We have discovered only a handful of restaurants that we liked and would recommend to our friends. It was exciting to see that you highly recommended our favorites!"

Lynn C.

"This is the one book I took everywhere when we were in Maui, just in case we came across a "must visit" restaurant. I also used it to plan some special dining and events before we even left for our trip. All I can say The reviews were right on, every time, and thanks to this book, being first time visitors to Maui, we didn't have even one disappointing meal, treat, or event. I am recommending it to everyone I know, and I am so glad I knew about it before we went!

Heidi R.

"Very useful on North Shore (Pa'ia) and UpCountry, too. Every comment in the book was "right on." Highly recommend using this book when in Maui."

Marjorie & Duane E.

"ALOHA. Have been on the island since Feb. 5 and leaving Feb. 25. Once again, your book was "right on the mark". I was pleased to see that the book is now on sale at many of the local stores. Good luck, it is a great accurate source of information."

John K.

"We are just back from our trip and I wanted you to know that we used your book for nearly every meal choice. Not once did you steer us wrong! We had amazing food at many restaurants we wouldn't have know existed. Thanks bunches!!"


"Very handy book, we read and reviewed before our trip to Maui and went to the restaurants we wanted, just wish we had more time as the ones we visited were exactly what the book described."


"We haven't been to Maui in several years so we thought that getting advice on the best restaurants would be worthwhile and this book really fit our needs. So far every restaurant we've tried has been good and we have tried a few that we might not have considered. We still have 4 more days here and I am bummed because that is not enough days to try all of the restaurants I still want to go to - I guess that is a good reason to come back. You will not regret purchasing this book as it saves you so much money that you might have spent on bad food. They give good tips for all prices ranges. We loved Cafe O'Lei last night and made reservations there for Thanksgiving. I like the Blog also to get even more updated info. "

Ellen Arnold
Seattle, Washington

"I love the honest and artful writing style, as well as advice that is unbiased and never steers me wrong. I have found many excellent recommendations and new favorites in this book. I have also had my suspicions confirmed....(why did I think that meal was so average when this restaurant is supposed to be so great?). Great advice, a must have for visiting, or living on Maui if you appreciate great food!"


"Book gives reader a fair and thorough review of the restaurants but also informs best places to shop, farmer's markets, types of fish available on islands, etc. We got much more than a restaurant guide. Would definitely recommend this book to anyone going to Maui. This is our third visit to the island and still got information that we didn't know before reading the book."


"This book gives such good useful information. We love the good and the negative comments. Also the other "where to" recommendations are great. We signed up for the blog information and received a rapid reply to a question."


"We Really LOVED all twelve restaurants we visited based on the books advice. Wasn't sure it would be worth spending the money on the book for a week and a half stay on the island, but we are so glad that we did, as the restaurants gave us terrific food and memorable experiences at fair prices. We went to both budget and the most extravagent restaurants. The great food at the budget restaurants easily paid for the book, as we wouldn't normally find these great little reasonably priced places. When we took a chance on restaurants not in the book; we were disappointed and paid too much. This book gives you much more insight then the best guide books."


"Thanks for your book, Maui’s Top Restaurants. My wife Lisa ordered your book from Amazon before our recent trip to Maui. It had been around 21 years since our last trip to Maui; this was the first trip to Maui for our two daughters: Lauren 21 and Carrie 18...We loved everything about the book. Accurate and fair ratings, personal writing style, well explained sponsorship issue. Having both multiple rating criteria, plus an overall rating was helpful. The subsections were very helpful: Ten Meals on Maui, Recommended restaurants by food Craving, by budget, and most helpful was the By Location subsection. If you have future editions in mind, one suggestion I have would be to add the overall rating next to the $$$ in the subsections. That’s what wore out our book; looking up By Location, then going down the list of $$ and $$$ listings, then having to flip back to the master list to see what you thought. If the rating was next to the $$$, boom we’re there in a flash...Thanks again for making such a positive impact throughout our recent vacation on Maui. Anyone I know heading to Maui will be instructed to immediately buy a copy of TMR before they leave home."

Pete, Lisa, Lauren & Carrie
Sunnyvale, California

"We went to several restaurants that were reccommended. All were excellent! probably would not have found some of the places if we had not read about them."


"James & Molly:

You changed our lives. Literally.

We danced at the bar in Capische,
beat the crowd at HGS on the way up
the mountain
enjoyed LGrill after the theatre,
lunch crowd twice at Cafe O'Lei.

Spago's and Joe' time.

Stayed in Makena and never
got on the road without your book.

I have never been to Maui this way
before.....snorkel in the morning,
sunset in the evening....and eat
by the rays of the Jacobson's."


"I can't tell you how much my wife and I have enjoyed your book Top Maui Restaurants. I'm being very honest in telling you that we have been coming to Maui since 1975 and have been going to the same old restaurants year after year. This year, however, was a totally different experience.

I accidently stumbled on your book while doing some research on a new restaurant my wife and I had never tried. I immediately fell in love with the short blip discussing your book and wanted to order it on for our trip. My wife said it wasn't necessary and to not bother. I said if we eat at just one recommended restaurant in the book, it might pay for itself the first night. She said we knew all the good restaurants so don't waste your time. She couldn't have been more wrong.

I ordered the book anyhow and wanted to surprise her with it when we arrived in Maui. Well, on the flight over from Los Angeles, I pulled out the book and started to research some different places for dinner; mainly a place we had never been to before. I wandered through the book starting with places in South Maui since we were staying in Wailea and began to read one or two of the reviews. Before I could read any further, she said let me see that book. About two hours later I got it back. It wasn't necessary though, because she had already made up a list of at least ten restaurants she wanted to try out based on your have given us new life. It's almost like coming to Maui for the first time all over again. We can't wait to come back again next year to continue on in your book. It's an absolute winner for any life style or budget. We can't thank you and James enough. The only thing that we were disappointed in was ourselves, for not buying the book sooner. "

Bill & Norma

"Just got home from Maui and this book was great in helping decide where to eat (both in advance and for some last-minute decisions). The tips section in the back had some good information as well on more general questions like "Should I drive the road to Hana."

However, this is a restaurant guide and not a general guidebook so you'll need something else for maps, lists of sightseeing activities etc. You can also buy this book in several places on the island including KMart, WalMart, Costco, Borders, Barnes & Noble. I want to say I also saw it in one or two ABC stores but I could be wrong.

Not every restaurant is listed because there are hundreds of restaurants. But chances are if you are on Maui or have gone before, and you are curious about a particular restaurant, that there is a review of it inside!

We had some great meals and some so-so ones (fully agreed upon by the reviews) and I know that Top Maui restaurants will help us again next time we have occasion to be in Maui."

North Carolina

"My husband and I absolutely love your book. It has been our bible for eating on Maui for the last 2 trips we have taken and I have to say that the reviews and info you provided were spot on. I have also bought one as a birthday gift for my sister who is going to Maui in October."


"If you are going to Maui and want to make the most of your dining out budget, I'd highly recommend this book. It rates many restaurants for food, ambience, value and more. We've used it for two years now and dined on some fabulous island food and avoided the pitfalls of dining based on advertising or random selection. You recoup your initial investment of the cost of the book many tmes over. I also love that they give you reviews on specific dishes. I tried many of them and found the reviews to be accurate and helpful. If you buy this book you won't look like a tourist with a confused look when trying to decide whether to dine at a certain restaurant or not."

Beach Girl

"I purchased your book a few weeks ago and have had my Kindle in hand ever since. My husband and I are coming to Maui ( from Pennsylvania) in August with our kids for 10 days. I have thoroughly enjoyed the book and take real heart and notes with your impressions and reviews of the local restaurants. The book is amazing and I even shared it with my travel agent this week. Thanks for the honest information and the time you and James invest to help travelers like us to make the most of our trip to your special paradise. We are staying in West Maui but certainly will venture out to experience many of the restaurants you tagged as exceptional and or memorable."

Beth D.

"I have been to Maui a few times and your book has been a remarkable guide to culinary satisfaction. I mean is there any better way to travel than by one's taste buds?"

Lori M

Your newsletters and your book, which i bought, was very helpful before and during our vacation. Thanks again for helping make our time in maui very lovely.

Carol L.

"My wife and I want to thank you for your wonderful guide.We used it extensively on our trip to Maui in April.
The reviews were right on."

Stan & Fran F.

"Your book was priceless during our recent 7-day visit - I knew as soon as I started reading that your reviews would help guide us to some gems.Thank you for sharing your research and passion, and helping make our trip easy and tasty!"

Laura A.

"Can't wait to put this book to use on our vacation coming up. This book had everything in it that you can use in maui - tips on restaurants and just plain good tips on going over there for vacation."

C. Ligh
Richmond, VA

"If you are a foodie visiting Maui, this book is a must. The reviews are accurate and honest. Maui has some excellent restaraunts, but also has some that it is best to avoid. This book will help you with food, views, and service."

G. Jo
Plano, TX

"My husband & I are planning our first trip to Maui and I am a research, plan ahead nut. I bought this book so we can enjoy some of the local places without totally and completely breaking our budget and get some good food in the process! I love how once you purchase the book you get access to the website that has more up to date information so we can see if some of our choices are no longer in business or whatever before we leave the mainland. Thanks for such a great book to Mr & Mrs Jacobson!!"

WV Book Lover

"We are so grateful for all your "hard" research (somebody has to do it!). Yes, we did save money every time we used it!"


"We picked up your book on our first day here, March 2, and we have enjoyed your tips very much...thanks for the book, it has enhanced our stay."

Farmington Hills, MI

I just want to thank you for your wonderful book. We just returned from 2 weeks in Maui, and not only used your book for restaurants, but for the "helpful" shopping and touring tips in the back. It is our new bible for Maui...thanks again for a great read and recommendations!"

Janette Lanier

"I recently purchased your Top Maui Restaurants 2010, and I love it."


"We have been to Maui counting this year 23 times and so look forward to it....we will definitely use the "Top Meals of Maui" section in making our selections for dinner. You have not let us down in your reviews and your customers ("WE") appreciate it."

Dave & Pat
Sebring, FL

"We are just completing a twelve day trip to Maui, and bought this book while here. We have been coming to Maui for years, and love good food. We therefore have some experience regarding the good restaurants. However, because we bought this book, we happily dined at several restaurants that we would not have otherwise frequented.
Examples: The Jacobsons highly recommended a new restaurant (David Paul's Island Grill) which turned out to be a great find. They also highly recommended Gerard's, a long-established restaurant in Lahaina that we had not visited for many years. It turned out to be one of our best dining experiences on Maui in many years.

Jim and Molly also had the courage to criticize many facets of Merriman's Kapalua, something that I am sure was difficult to do in light of Peter Merriman's exulted status as a chef in Hawaii. Unfortunately, their criticisms (which we were not aware of when we ate at Merriman's as we had not yet purchased the book) were quite accurate and carefully worded.

Besides being accurate, the Jacobsons write in a way that is entertaining and plain fun. They are obviously devoted foodies, and their descriptions of some of the dishes that they like best are such that you can almost taste them.
As anyone who has been to Maui knows, food is quite expensive over here. You can spend a great deal of money at a mediocre restaurant just as easily as at a great one. This makes the purchase price of this book (about the price of an appetizer at a good Maui restaurant) a bargain. If you like good food, and are coming over here, buy this book!"

Paula A. Wood
Hilton Head Island, SC

"Thank you for the invaluable guide, it made our last vacation much more enjoyable than our first trip to Maui... our dining experiences were actually fun with good food at good prices."

Rhonda S.

"I had gotten Molly and James first version of this book for our initial visit to Maui. It was a god-send in steering us in the right direction for food decisions both good places to hit and the "misses" to avoid. I had heard due to family health issues (of parents) that an updated version probably wouldn't happen. Imagine my pleasure and surprise when just a couple weeks before our departure for a return visit to both Maui and Hawaii (the big island, which isn't covered) I got the announcement of the release of the 2010 version of this foodie's "bible for eating".

Since I found their calls and assesments in their original book so dead-on I didn't even attempt any of the restaurants they had less than good reviews on with our recent visit. I was surprised there was a couple places we missed on our first visit which had gotten hearty recommendations that had fallen off the cliff, in that they were no longer rated well by James and Molly. So we simply avoided those.

We were budget traveling and needed to keep the cost of our meals in control.
If you're a first time visitor to Maui, you may be surprised at general restaurant prices in Maui, where, for instance a pizza (14" medium) can easily run in the mid $30 range. (we stayed in Lahaina, which has MANY food options and is a lovely walking town to get to many of the local spots).
Since our accomdations had a kitchenette, I walked to one of the recommended local grocery stores (also supplied in this book) and picked up items for breakfasts and snacks during our stay.

Did we splurge on food? Absolutely. Selectively and with the guidance of this clearly written and laid out book. We attended "The Feast at Lele" and enjoyed every moment of both the private table service (no buffet lines, here) and show.
Also Molly and James have strong positive recommendations to a meal/show combination that simply can't be beat. We attended Ulalena and ate at Ruth's Chris. As they say in their book, trying to describe the show is futile. It is something that simply MUST be experienced and any explanation of it makes it less than the sum of what it is. (As a note, I URGE you to pick up the pamphlet at the front counter of the theatre. It contains a breakdown of the various scenes that you will soon experience.) Simply SPECTACULAR. The meal at Ruth's Chris did not disappoint. There is a "show combination" menu one can choose from, or there are "upgrades" where one pays the difference for more eating options. The experience? Exactly what one would expect from Ruth's Chris.

We also found out about an "early bird special" at Son'z at Swan Court. Located only a few minutes drive north of our place in Lahaina. Fortunately we can say our experience was much better than James & Molly's. Maybe because we were there for their early eaters special (I believe it starts at 5:00pm, but check to be sure) the service was attentive and not over-attentive like the experiences that our guides expressed in the book. The food was wonderfully prepared and pleased both myself and my lovely dining partner (my mom). The price was amazing for both the view and the food. Maybe those that run Son'z have read and taken to heart the reviews of Molly and James. I hope our most pleasant experience wasn't a fluke and others have a similar "nirvana experience" that is easy on the wallet.

As I said, we were on a budget. So along with our splurges, we needed to find places that served good food that fit our taste buds that were more budget friendly. Upon our arrival to the island after flying in from LA we knew we'd be hungry. We're in Hawaii! What is more Hawaiian than seafood? My first instinct was to go to Momma's Fish House for lunch. But even lunches are pricey there. With the guidance of Top Maui Restaurants I easily located another option near the airport in the town of Paia. Fancy? Nope. Great food? Absolutely! Mom thought burgers had to be "burgers" (ground beef made into patties). So she was a bit put-off when she saw on their chalk-board menu the various fish burgers. I assured her that my "close personal friends" Molly and James recommended the Ono burger. After a long flight, I assure you there is nothing that will put a smile on your face like making your first stop in Paia (think of it as a "hippie town" with the Hawaiian vibe)... Very cool, very kicked back and this fish joint will please your wallet and your tummy! When we were through there we walked across the street for desert. Taking Molly's advice we each got a small gelato after we each sampled several flavors to make that difficult decision. They provide "generous" samples, so one is able to get a whole mouth taste of each taster.

I love mexican food, my lovely traveling companion (mom) doesn't. I wanted to find something we could both enjoy. Again with the aid of Top Maui Restaurants 2010, we were once again pointed exactly in the right direction. There is a place very near "Cool Catz" that was rated well by our intrepid guides that serves local "plates". I asked our server if we could split a plate (some places won't allow it, others will with a separate plate charge). She smiled and said "absolutely!" With that we ordered an app of musubi and their house lunch plate with a couple Kona beers. With two sharing the plate, there was still food left over when our bellies cried surrender. There was a rice noodle soup, pork lau lau and kalua pork, along with the requisite two scoops of rice and one scoop of macaroni salad. With the quality and quantity of food provided, this became mom's "go to lunch spot" The variety they offered also ensured one would never get bored "eating the same old thing".

One day I was severely craving some mexican, so since there was a well rated mexican joint literally upstairs from mom's new favorite eatery, we parted company and I experienced a family owned mexican place that fixed my craving and put a huge smile on my face. As Molly and James say "the food was made with lots of "love". After I finished I rejoined mom as she was wrapping up her meal (she's a slow eater LOL) Without the assistance and guidance from Molly and James, we probably wouldn't have found either of these places and certainly I wouldn't have dropped off mom one place to eat and then wandered off to get my "fix" of my mexican food.

I guess that's really what it comes down to. After reading their Top Maui Restaurants I feel like Molly and James are "good friends" that try really hard not to lead one astray. Have we met? hehehe, no. Though I see we missed their first Mai Tai party of the year by about one month.

Not only will they guide you thoughtfully and safely through the mine-field of eateries regardless of your budget or food tastes, they will provide you with many worthwhile tips that will make your stay on Maui a better experience. Where to get the best poke or want to know where you can pick up some Maui Cattle Co. beef? It's in there.
Want to travel the world famous "road to Hana"? and like me wanted to experience it and enjoy the views rather than get frazzled while making the drive? That too is in their book.

After our second visit to the island of Maui, with Molly & James guiding us much of the way, I can truly say their book is invaluable

Mahalo, Molly and James & Aloha"

Bruce Porter

"My wife and I spend a couple months on Maui every year, and we eat out every day, so we thought we knew a lot about Maui restaurants. I even have a website of my own reviewing Maui restaurants, hotels, condos, sights and activities, so I constantly try to keep up on the latest and best Maui restaurants in all price ranges.

But this book, Top Maui Restaurants, taught me much more. It helped me find out about many excellent restaurants I was not familiar with even after years of going to Maui. It helped me learn about what are the best things to order at certain restaurants. It helped me choose restaurants based on what I most wanted for any given meal based on food types, ambiance, and service.

Most guides to Maui restaurants just tell you the basic facts (location, type of food, hours of operation). This book of restaurant reviews gives you all of that, plus so much more, with detailed expert evaluations and opinions. It's like the difference between looking up a restaurant in the phonebook compared to reading a full-page review of that restaurant in a local newspaper. These authors know Maui restaurants! "


"I have never written a review for a book or anything else. (Really!) I just had to pass on the delight I experienced in reading this book. Why, you ask? 1.) It's incredibly well-organized, providing all the information you will need to make well-informed decisions about one of the most fun things to do anywhere, which is eat. 2.)It is well-researched by a couple who have tried all the restaurants in the book during many visits. They live on this island, and they don't just rely on one visit, but return often to continue to reevaluate the conditions. They attempt to remain anonymous for obvious reasons. And they send friends to these restaurants and get their opinions. Wow. 3.)It is well-written, and believe me I readily admit to being a snob in that category. They tell you what's good, and know where these restaurants are getting their supplies from. They know the cook's reputation and history. They even tell you about the parking around the restaurant. The writing isn't dry and formulaic, but down-right prosaic, and very funny when called for. There's just a wealth of information on so much about everything, that I would have wanted to read it even if I weren't going to Maui!! And 4.) They have a special rating that appealed especially to me. It's called the " in food". When I read that, I understood what I always felt when I made bread and wanted to hand-knead it instead of tossing it into a machine. I always thought of it as 'loving' the bread, instead of just making a product. It's what anyone does when they create a special dish for someone they care about. It's what someone does when they make a quilt instead of buying a blanket, or creates a perfume, and if that "speaks" to you as it did to me, you'll understand my enthusiasm. The authors rate the restaurants on this factor, because it does matter for the reasons mentioned above, and the fact that it makes one slow down and really enjoy, instead of just filling the 'hole' and moving on. Oh, and as if that weren't enough, the authors have a blog where you can ask questions, and get really speedy and informative answers! I wrote and asked about cooking classes on Maui and had a fantastic response within the hour! In a place where the general attitude is "Hang loose, Bruddah" this was way above 5 stars!! This was Mega wowie. Even if you're not going to Maui, but just want to fantasize a bit, Buy This Book!! Wowie, and not the stuff that will get you busted, but will make you happy."

Brenda Glissmeyer
Salt Lake City, UT

"This book is well written and well organized. After about 5 minutes you are using it like a pro and making plans on where and when to eat while on Maui. The new 2010 edition is out and I have just ordered it since I was so impressed with the 2008 addition. Some of the restaurant reviews on the internet are so bad you wind up not wanting to eat at all. This is like calling your brother and sister and asking what they recommend. Thanks for all the 'hard' work eating constantly and telling us what you think!"

Bob Stortz
Manville, NJ

"This is the third edition of the book that I've purchased over the years, and each year James and Molly exceed my expectations and amaze me that they continue to seek out and find gems of restaurants on Maui. This book is more like a "Bible" than a reference book when it come to providing valuable information, and the money that you'll save by following their advice and dining at the recommended establishments will pay for this book many times over."

Edward Mendelsohn
Weston, FL

"I am a returning traveler to Maui-during whale season. I love this book and am bringing it with me as I will be in Maui on the 1st of February.

It is informative and I like to compare my feelings on the restaurants I have visited and will check before going some place new."

Marjorie L. Barton
Las Vegas, NV

"We have been signing the praises of your book since our trip to Maui in 2009. Thank you!"

Jim & Kathryn

"My 2010 book arrived yesterday and I was up late reading it! Great job! I love it!"

Ronna Larsen

"Thank you for making our first trip to Hawai'i and to Maui so special. We ate like kings and loved every minute of the trip. For your information, we enjoyed Lahaina Grill, The Feast at Lele, Mala Ocean Tavern in Lahaina, Gannon's, Hali'imaile, Mama's Fish Market and the Paia Fish Market. Your restaurant guide is fantastic."

Jim & Kathy Dawson
Fairway, KS

"Love your new book!!!!! Thank you for all the work you put into it!"


“Thank you so very much . . . Top Maui Restaurants is very helpful for planning a rehearsal dinner next June. We will be spending a week in Maui, staying at the Four Seasons, celebrating a wedding. Your service has been exceptional. Thank you again!”

Kelly Boldy
Noblesville, IN

“We have been home for just two weeks and it seems like we were never away. Your Maui guide was very helpful and we all especially enjoyed Buzz’s and Cafe O’Lei.”

Gene Miranda
Florham Park, NJ

“I ordered your guide on-line. It is excellent. We are from Calgary, Alberta and have been to Maui twice but not for over 10 years, so your guide will come in handy when we visit again in April.”

Terry & Susan Winnitoy
Calgary, Alberta

“Just a note to thank you for the Top Maui Restaurants guide. My husband I used it extensively and found some great food - your guide was very helpful. Merry Christmas and Mahalo for the guide.”

Gae Sellstedt
Vancouver, BC

“My sister Carol and I visited Maui recently with no clue on how to pick restaurants . . . I loved the folksy and down-to-earth reviews, they get right to the quick about each place and what to expect . . . We were trying to watch our pocketbooks a little, too, so it was very helpful in that department . . . I can’t recommend it enough.”

Susan Theriault
Plainville, CT

“Just wanted to let you know that I’ve been to Maui over 20 times and this is the first time I’ve bought the guide. It is excellent! I’m recommending it to my friends here and on the mainland.”

Mike Dinstell
Moraga, CA

“My family has recently returned from Maui (we stayed at Kaanapali Beach Hotel – wonderful!). Your book was our bible and we are so fortunate to have had your expertise.

Your reviews allowed us to sample some of the exquisite offerings of Maui and our experience would not have been complete without trying your recommendations.”

Deborah Rishell

“We just got home on Friday from an amazing week in Maui and I wanted to tell you that we only ate at restaurants listed in your guide!

It was so great because they came with a little ‘assurance’ that we were not going to be scammed!

Your info was invaluable to us and I will definitely hold onto it and make sure I tell everyone I know who is going to Maui to get the newest version. Thanks again for making our trip a wonderful dining experience!”

Jeani Adams
Anaheim, CA

“I love ur book. We just left maui and I used ur book for the second year in a row. U and your wife have the best advice.”

Sent from her Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

"We just returned from Maui yesterday. We can't tell how much your restaurant guide helped us. We had many wonderful meals and planned them using your guide.

We ate at Lahaina Grill (our favorite), Mama's, Waterfront, Mala, I'o, Pineapple Grill, John Paul's (yum), and Paia Fish Market.

The chefs tasting menu at Lahaina Grill was one of the best meals we have ever had. We frequently go to New York and New Orleans and have many fine meals all over the country, but the food in Maui is exceptional. Thanks again,"

Denise Douthit

"I would like to thank you for the wonderful dining experiences my wife and I had in Maui.

Without a doubt, Capische is the best dining experience in Maui [and I found out about it from you]. Once again, your recomendations are excellent and continue providing great reviews. Thank you."

Ivan & Doris Taylor

"Reading your book Top Maui Restaurants in advance of our trip enabled us to plan where we would eat out each night (often with the decision made at the last minute) and not spend valuable vacation time trying to figure out where to eat.

All in all it made for a very enjoyable and memorable vacation and I just had to let you know how much your restaurant guide helped."

Brenda & Ray Poklacki

"This is my last night on Maui, and I just picked up this book... Having it two weeks ago would have saved me some indigestion "challenges"!

What I love most about this book is the way the authors (a great husband and wife team) describe not just the food, but their entire EXPERIENCE at each restaurant.

Each review is written so that I am almost sitting at the table with them! (I swear I was salivating after reading one review!) Thank, Jim and Molly for eating out so much!"

Barbara Drazga
Aurora, CO

"I'm a resident of Maui, and think this book is great. So far I haven't been disappointed by their recommendations.

Thanks for bringing honest reviews about restaurants to Maui rather then having to rely on the Menu guide."

Laura A. Burger
Kihei, Maui, HI

"This was a great resource.

I especially liked that the authors would give negative comments about certain restaurants - it made the good reviews much more believable.

So many of these books seem like puff pieces while this book struck me as fair and balanced."

R. Ashley

"I love this book and wished that I had one just like it for every place that I visit.

I am a travel agent and travel often. I am always buying lots of guides to compare each other with to get the best advice on where to dine.

I am a planner to the last detail and I HAVE to know where we are going to eat when we travel. It just saves so much time when you are actually on vacation.

We love food and appreciate good quality and service. We don't like to spend a lot on eating so value is also very important.

This book is great. We will be putting it to the test in June of 2008 and I look forward to comparing our experience with the authors.

I am almost finished reading and highlighting the book and look forward to any updates forthcoming.

Thanks so Molly and James go live somewhere else and write another guide! New York would be great!!"

Marilyn Bates
Central California

"I bought this book before my first trip to Maui, even though I was going with my boyfriend who goes about 2 or 3 times a year.

It was fantastic! We both loved it!

It would be a really great book to leave at your condo or time-share there, but it's also good to have at home so you can plan out your meals.

I avoided restaurants that I might normally settle on, and was satisfied every time!

They're comprehensive, they cover the tinyest of eating establishments (huts, cafes, a sushi bar that seats only 12), to the mainstream, more famous places. They also write in clear, humorous language that everyone can understand, AND enjoy!

I'm so grateful to have had this book, and used it on my 2nd Maui trip about a month later.

Don't waste your money in a place where it's so precious. If you buy this book, you will not be disappointed. If you don't buy it, you might just be..."

J. Vincent
Pullman, WA

"We live here on Maui. We also eat out several times a week.

The reviews of the restaurants are dead-on accurate!

We were amazed at how much we agreed with the so-so review of the fancy restaurant on the beach (Page 212).

We are now beginning to work our way through some of the smaller places they have reviewed.

This book is an absolute must for any visitor and local who loves food!

Bob & Georgia Kronenberg, Kihei, Maui, HI"

Robert A. Kronenberg
Maui, HI

"There's nothing worse than trying to pick out a place to eat and then finding out that the reason there are few other cars in the parking lot is because the food (1) is too expensive or (2) is poor in quality or selection.

With this book, you can have a much better chance of your dining experience meeting all of your expectations.

It's particularly valuable when you are hungry and in a part of the island where you haven't been before. You'll know ahead of time that while you may not like the hamburgers here, the house specialty, fish tacos, are the best you've ever had.

It's even more valuable when you're trying to plan that "special" (read: expensive) celebratory meal and you want everything to go "just right" for the evening. It's also great for experimenting with that little out of the way place that only the locals know.

I've eaten at enough of the featured restaurants over the last few trips to Maui to totally trust the ratings and reviews given in this terrific handbook for making successful dining choices."

S. Littlefield
Missouri City, TX

"I did hours and hours and hours of research on sites such as tripadvisor, Yahoo! Travel, citysearch, yelp, etc. etc.

Then I bought this book, and found that I could have bypassed the entire onerous task.

Top Maui Restaurants 2008 agreed with all of my research, and provided a lot more.

For example, the description of the very first restaurant I looked at in the book provided me information about booking at that particular restaurant that I had not discovered in my online research.

I also appreciate the fact that the book is not a shill. If something sucks, the authors will tell you in no uncertain terms.

Conversely, if they recommend a restaurant or a particular dish, they tend to be dead on the money (modulo personal food preferences, of course).

Finally, the ability to get the entire book in PDF form (once you purchase the paper edition) is invaluable because it makes the book searchable electronically."

Curtis Jackson
San Jose, CA

"If you are going to Maui and you are not planning to eat all your meals at one resort, then you have to buy this book.

We went to Maui twice in 2008, the first time without the benefit of this book, and ate at several restaurants with poor food, poor service, high prices, or even all three!

Being an island, the choices are limited on Maui, and tourists often prefer to eat at a place they can walk to or get to easily, so for the restaurants us tourists are easy pickings!

A good view does not guarantee good food or service (although almost always high prices), but with Top Maui Restaurants you can always have both, AND find something right near wherever you happen to be on the island.

On our second trip to Maui a few months later, armed with Top Maui Restaurants, we ate like royalty and did not pay through the roof either, AND enjoyed many lovely views.

Personally I think everyone who plans to eat out anywhere in Maui should bring this book along."

Elizabeth B. Cooney

"James and Molly Jacobson are a pair of well-heeled restaurant reviewers who don't want you to miss a four-star restaurant or bargain dive that serves great food.

They make sure your visit is packed with options for great food broken down by location. They will direct you to the very best of places to eat on the island.

Don't plan a trip to Maui without first reading this book."

Brenda Poklacki
Trabuco Canyon, CA

"Very helpful info!

Carried this book with us at all times during our stay and found the reviews very accurate.

Also, found some great restaurants we wouldn't normally have tried. Highly recommend."


"We went to Maui with only breakfast and 2 dinner plans for the whole week.

We studied the book before we left. We knew exactly what to expect before we ordered dinner anywhere.

From the top onion rings at the Hyatt to the Bento box at Cascades, we were truly surprised at the quality. A true value!"

The Treats

"This book has been extremely helpful while vacationing in Maui.

Dining out is always a big part of our vacation and this guide definitely helped us avoid disappointments.

The reviews were right on and the rating system accurate. We are here for three weeks and plan to try many as many restaurants as possible. This guide answers the question 'Where should we eat tonight?'"

Gini Ma

"This guide was extremely helpful and is highly recommended.

We've been to Maui twice and this helped us find favourites and also discover gems we would not have known about.

We went from cheap and great to expensive and great and all price levels in between, all of them great food and/or service. The guide helped make both vacations..."

Toronto, ON

"My wife and I are planning a 25th anniversary trip to the islands in May, and I have been trying to get an itinerary as to where we would like to visit and dine.

We only have four days on Maui, and I am starting to find we could easily have spent our entire trip on this island. While searching for a good book about Maui, I ran across a review for Top Maui Restaurants 2008.

I got the book this past Saturday and started in on it on Sunday. I couldn't put it down.

The book is very informative, and it confirmed several restaurants we had been looking into.

I liked getting info on the lesser known establishments with good eats as well. I have never been on a vacation where I've known where I'm going to eat dinner each evening until now. This book will be in my carry-on bag!"

Bob Starks
Indianapolis, IN

"We bought the Jacobson's "Top Maui Restaurant" on the second day of our visit to Maui.

It was worth every penny and allowed us to avoid some bad choices. It also helped us make good decisions.

Ultimately, we ended up favoring one of the restaurant not far from our hotel (we had dinner at Longhi's 3 times in one week). We also enjoyed immensely Mama's Fish House, Five Palms and the ultimate in indulgance: Spago (very pricey but very worth it and correctly scored on the authors' scale as 24 out of possible 25 points for food quality).

But the book has great recommendations (and warnings) for every palate and budget. Well done. We'll use it again on our future visits to Maui."

Maria Salapska

"We used this book in early June. Every place we ate at was worth the money.

We also tried some things we wouldn't have because of the book.

They do seem to cover all the same restaurants our hotel concierge lead us to. This was helpful actually. While we were in Maui one of the free magazines for tourists featured an article from them."

Local Beans

"We just got back from a week in Maui and found this book very useful. We love to eat well on our vacations and it was fun to read before the trip.

One restaurant we went to twice after their recommendation - Mala - and it was one of my favorite memories on our trip, sitting so close to the ocean we caught some spray at one point (!) and having a really nice meal.

My only reason for giving it four stars is it's not easy to tell where on the island the restaurants are located - I would have liked more geographical info."

K. Mash
Houston, TX

"Not having visited Maui in 30 years, and given the fact that Hawaii, in general is so expensive, this wonderful book not only gave a comprehensive and entertaining review of Maui's offerings, but it was organized, thorough and easy to use as a daily guide...which we will for the next two weeks!

This book made an important part of our trip less challenging and took away the stress and frustration of trying to find nice, clean and reasonably priced restaurants.

I am so very glad we purchased this book -- I recommend it highly -- no one should travel to Maui without it!"

Kraig and Debbie
York, PA

"In the past, we used another book on Thrifty Restaurants of Maui.

This new book is a must on saving money but most of the restaurants listed are in a bit more pricey range.

I liked that they also listed restaurants that they DON'T recommend and explain why. Restaurants are divided into areas of Maui; another list have the restaurants divided by type of restaurant... Chinese, Mexican, etc.

I'd highly recommend buying this book and taking it along to Maui as you vacation."

Sara Chelanllama
Chelan, WA

"We’ve just returned from our fifth trip to the island in five years, and we used your guide for the first time on this trip. What a great time and money saver!

It was nice to have some information about places that weren’t there last year (Fred’s), and places we’ve been by in the past and hadn’t tried before. (Joe’s).

This guide is worth every penny.”

Samantha Mar
Seattle, WA

“I just wanted to let you know how very helpful your restaurant guide is!

My husband and I just got back from Maui Saturday and we found your guide to be very informative! I printed the whole guide and punched holes in it and put it in a 3-ring binder and kept it in the Jeep.

We tried several of the places listed and found each one to be excellent.

However, I do have a comment to make about it … you should have recommended that we each get the souffle at Roy’s!! I didn’t want to share!!! (but I did).

Thanks again for an excellent resource. We would have missed out on some great food if not for your guide!!”

Melanie and Willie Harrell
Roxie, MS