Excellent | Worth a Detour
South Maui Fish Company | Island’s Best Poke
Review by: Maggie Rosenberg & Trevor Hagstrom
Food Truck Extraordinaire
Are you in Maui looking for the island’s best poke? You’ll find it tucked among the strip malls along Kihei’s beaches. It’s at a food truck called the South Maui Fish Company. They prepare everything from their own fisherman’s catch. Here you find classic Hawaiian preparations of poke, fish tacos, and ceviche. The funky outdoor seating area is shielded from the drab parking lot with a tall bamboo fence and island music. It’s also close enough to the beach that you can take your lunch out to the rocks and watch the waves. Additionally, the truck sells daily fresh catch to take away.
The poke plate smartly separates the warm rice from the chilled fish. This way, each maintains ideal eating temperature. Add a sprinkle of furikake and a drizzle of soy glaze. Cabbage slaw finds it enhancement in pineapple and coconut milk.
You can get two types of ahi poke, individually or half-and-half. Spicy mayonnaise and raw jalapenos give it heat, but not overwhelming spiciness. Actually, we prefer the shoyu, which does not pretend to be spicy. Sweet Maui onions infuse its pleasantly restrained flavor.
Even Better: Ceviche
The Fish Company’s daily ceviche can be even better than the island’s best poke. They marinate choice cuts of fresh mahi mahi in lime and coconut, adding the occasional surprise chunk of purple yam for textural contrast. They warned us that the small size was nearly as good a value as the large. True, but small sates almost any appetite. Hawaiian portions run large, and ceviche can get tedious and acidic after too much. Ceviche changes based on the daily fresh catch. We look forward to coming back and seeing what’s on the menu next time.
Maui’s Best Fish Tacos
Fish tacos show off skillful grill work on a backyard propane grill next to the rig. Generously apportioned mahi mahi is cooked perfectly. So many Hawaiian taco chefs overcook it. Crisped on the grill, their shells deliver crunch and smoky flavor. However, too much dressing can overwhelm them. The wetness of coconut milk slaw makes them messy and a bit too sweet. Regardless, you won’t find better fish tacos on Maui. More restraint would rate them even higher.
If you hanker for dessert, head down South Kihei Road and find a food bus called Gus’ Shave Ice, a Roadfood favorite.
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