This place in Kaanapali’s Whaler’s Village is one of our favorites, with a nightly hula/live music show, known as one of the best on the island (different from a luau!). It’s a very nice show with excellent live music that varies from Hawaiian slack guitar and traditional tunes to Jimmy Buffet and Bob Marley. They have two restaurants – their Barefoot Bar, which is a big sand pit (yes, you do go barefoot) with chairs and tables under umbrellas that serves excellent, reasonably priced pub food – families with kids can go here with no problem, and the kids love the show.
Not your traditional pub menu, however. Yes, they have excellent burgers and sandwiches, but they take it one step beyond for those
with palates. Their hors d’oeuvres are also superb. We love the crab wontons in soy-mustard dipping sauce. Alexei and I start craving those wontons about 3 months before each trip, and we have to have them at least 3 times each trip. Try them – you can join me in figuring out how they make that sauce – and then please let me know how you did it.
For entree’s, their burgers are really good, their fish sandwich is excellent (ask for the ahi to be seared!) and their fish and chips are actually really good – not greasy at all, but crisp and in a light batter. My nephew Harald also gives his highest approval on their kid’s menu.
For dessert, go for the brownie sundae with raspberry coulis. Yum. That is, if you can still face food after that dinner!
No reservations at the Barefoot Bar – you must put your name in and wait – up to an hour during primetime. Nice thing is that they have a GREAT bar with a lovely view of the sunset. You can also order dinner from the bar tables. For a large group with fussy children, send someone early to put your name in and order a drink at the bar. Or, if you like shopping, you can wander around the very good shops in Whaler’s Village and pick up that swimsuit, sandals or goodies to take back home.
Unfortunately, they’ve reduced the quality of their liquor, and the best vodka they have is something called Three Olives, which is not good at all. I tried what USED to be my favorite chickdrink, the Plantation Lemonade, and the new ‘top shelf’ vodka they have just ruined it. Rats. I switched to their draft beer that is from the Maui Brewing Company and I have to say it’s EXCELLENT! They have a great Big Swell IPA, their Mana Wheat has some overtones of pineapple (trust me, it works!) and their Bikini Blonde is a nice light lager. They also have a proprietary brew called Barefoot Brew that is mid-range hoppy and very good too.
They also make a pretty good Mai Tai – but be sure to ask for Meyer’s dark rum, or you’re in for a nasty surprise. That is, if they haven’t cut more corners and gotten rid of it. If they have, stick to the beer. You won’t be disappointed.
Hula Grill (main dining room):
The restaurant section of the Hula Grill is excellent. A bit more expensive, but the menu is very imaginative and very good. Chef Peter Merriman has an excellent menu and the place is wildly popular at a very reasonable price for the quality of the cuisine. The kids menu is the same as at the Barefoot Bar. A wide variety of specials supplement a strong set menu. Don’t make any decisions until you hear the daily specials – you won’t be disappointed. Reservations are imperative. We always eat at the main restaurant one night, and the barefoot bar one or two nights, and have yet to decide otherwise.
May the Restaurant Gods be with you!