It starts with the setting—a sophisticatedly rustic communal table set under the 75-foot canopy of a 100-year-old rubber tree on the grounds of the Royal Lahaina Resort and Bungalows on Maui. Spanning 27 acres, the stunning property unfolds along renown Kaʻanapali Beach, which was once frequented by Hawaiian royalty. The Royal Lahaina Resort and Bungalows was the first resort built on the Kaʻanapali Coast and the tree hails back from that time, planted when the resort was first built.

As guests arrive for the weekly Friday, pre-fixe culinary event, they’re welcomed with a champagne sabering and local, farm-to-table fare being cooked the traditional way, over an open fire. Seasonal pupus await, a delightful array of hors d’oeuvres like sourdough bread cooked over the fire and served with gathered Hawaiian salt, and house made mango butter, wild boar smoked over kiawe wood, local taro mochi, and smoked mahi spoons with dashi yogurt. 

Following pupu’s guests enjoy a full, five-course menu representing land and sea. Locally sourced and sustainable ingredients are featured, including invasive species like the wild boar and Axis deer that threaten Maui’s natural ecosystem. And, of course, Kiawe’s Master sommeliers select wines that are paired throughout.

Offered throughout the year, The Branches is an experience to treasure no matter the season. And it’s only one of many activities on offer at the Royal Lahaina Resort and Bungalows. From classes in Native Hawaiian culture and history to ukulele lessons, hula, and fitness, there’s no shortage of things to do. That is, if you can pull yourself away from the extraordinary ocean views. 

Book a stay in an ocean view, Lahaina Kai Tower room by December 22, 2022 and receive daily complimentary breakfast for two. The three-hour dining experience at The Branches goes from 5pm to 8pm (varies upon seasonality), and can be reserved online for $395 per person, Kamaaina rates available.