24, Sep 2008
Mala Wailea (Maui)

Mala is the restaurant at the Marriott in Wailea, which should tell you a lot. Wailea is where some of the nicest, priciest resorts are. The whole area is almost nothing but resorts, golf courses, a few high-end shops, and some very nice houses and condos. The beaches there (public, which is nice) are lovely. As the restaurant at the Marriott, Mala has a very nice deck overlooking the Marriott’s lovely pool area and ocean view. The prices are high and the service is good. Fortunately, the food is actually good too.
E had one of their daily specials, a blackened and baked kampachi with sweet potatoes (and some other stuff) that was delicious. The fish was perfectly done and everything was good. But I’d have to say my dish was one of the best fish preparations I’ve had in a long long time: the avalon seared sashimi with shiitake ginger sauce. Sashimi, in this context, apparently always means ahi (the waiter was confused for a second when I asked what kind of sashimi). The ahi was seared, with the center still raw, sliced, and fanned across the plate on a bed of shiitake-ginger sauce. This sauce was a very flavorful mushroomy thing with big chunks of shiitake and a strong ginger flavor — i.e. it was intensely, thoroughly and very satisfyingly as described. I tend to like saucy flavor-heavy things and so really enjoyed it. It went perfectly with the ahi. The dish also came with mashed potatoes (fine, nothing special) and was topped with white and black sesame seeds and an artful pile of pickled ginger, both nice touches. Seriously, one of my favorite fish experiences in a long time.

Tags: , ,