>>Tyler: The cuisine of Hawaii is a delicious blend of local and ethnic styles that reflects
the islands’ history and culture. And the resulting fusion of flavors is what brings
me here today. An important part of Hawaii’s cuisine begins with fresh ingredients, which
is why we’re starting our harvest at a local farm, then continuing our culinary journey
across Hawaii with chef-driven restaurants. [music]
High up on the slopes of Haleakala on Maui, I’ve come across a unique agricultural tourism
experience where artisan craftsmanship is the key to award-winning cheese. I’m here
to learn about the care and dedication that goes into the cheese-making process, and what
makes Surfing Goat Dairy’s cheese one of Maui’s most delicious products.
>>Thomas Kafsack: We have about 20 different fresh cheeses. We have a total of 18 cheese
which have won national awards. We grow herbs over here and we don’t use anything else
in these cheeses except these organic ingredients.>>Tyler: They have over 200 goats here at
Surfing Goat Dairy. And some of them want to nip my hands instead of the alfalfa – and
my shirt! And they help make everything from truffles to cheeses here.
Now I’m even more eager to head to the Hali’imaile General Store, where Chef Bev Gannon is all
about using fresh ingredients found in Hawaii. Formerly a local five-and-dime for the nearby
pineapple plantations, the Hali’imaile General Store now serves a more modern take on Hawaii’s
regional flavors.>>Chef Beverly Gannon: You know, my approach
was always, I just wanted the best ingredients. I wanted what I wanted as a customer, which
was – I want the best fish, I want the best meat, I want the best produce on the plate.
If you have that, then you don’t have to do a lot to it.
>>Tyler: Right. So, what does the regional cuisine movement mean for Maui?
>>Chef Beverly Gannon: Well, I think what it has meant for Maui is that, when you walk
into a restaurant, you are getting the best that Maui has to offer.
>>Tyler: Next, I’m headed to nearby Oahu to sample their take on local fare.
Koko Head Cafe is in Kaimuki on the island of Oahu. I’m about to sample breakfast favorites
turned Hawaii fusion.>>Chef Lee Ann Wong: I’ve cooked all over
the world and for me, coming to a place like Hawaii that has its own agriculture, has its
own food history, I think, It is just such a privilege to be here and discover new ingredients.
Coming from New York, I’ve been able to find ingredients, work with ingredients here
that I’ve never used before, I’ve never seen before, that only grow in Hawaii.
>>Tyler: There is so much to love about Hawaii’s culinary scene. Tasting these dishes, featuring
local ingredients, have really made my journey across Hawaii very unique.