Top Central Maui Restaurants Table

Top 10 Restaurants in Central Maui

For foodies, Central Maui restaurants are one of the island’s best-kept secrets. Mom-and-pop shops and hole-in-the-wall eateries mingle with upscale bistros and garden cafes. The flavors – and cultures – of the island come to life here.

Ready to explore the fares of this less-trodden side of Maui? Here are the top 10 restaurants in Central Maui.

Central Maui


Cafe O’Lei at the Mill House – Wailuku

1670 Honoapiilani Highway

Located at the Maui Tropical Plantation, Cafe O’Lei at the Mill House is a spacious indoor/outdoor restaurant with spectacular views of the West Maui Mountains. This chic, airy restaurant is great for a lunch or dinner date and boasts mouthwatering island-inspired fares.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Cafe O'Lei At Mill House

At lunch, go for the Hamachi Kama (grilled yellowtail collar), or stop by at dinner for ginger shoyu braised short ribs. Don’t forget to try one of Cafe O’Lei’s creative cocktails – many of which are made with locally-sourced tropical ingredients.

Stay nearby in Iao Valley at Iao Valley Inn’s Cottage for a quiet, authentic Maui experience.

Tiffany’s – Wailuku

1792 Main Street in Wailuku

Tiffany’s is owned by beloved Hawaii chef Sheldon Simeon (who also founded Tin Roof, another popular Central Maui eatery). Chef Sheldon took over Tiffany’s in 2022 and gave the longstanding Maui restaurant a facelift.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Kalbi Ribs

The menu here runs the gamut of island-style fares. Think saimin, loco moco, mochiko chicken, kalbi ribs, panko mahi… The list goes on. Tiffany’s also has a “budget ballahz” menu that kicks in after 8 pm, with discounted craft cocktails and bites you won’t find on the dinner menu.


A Saigon Cafe – Wailuku

1792 Main St

Blink, and you might miss it – this sequestered Wailuku cafe is known for its flavorful Vietnamese fares. A Saigon Cafe has been operating on Maui since 1993, and it is well known in the local community for its authentic pho and bahn hoi. Come hungry, the menu is huge, and you’re going to want to try it all!


Marco’s – Kahului

444 Hana Highway

Comfort food takes precedence at this upscale, family-friendly diner. At breakfast, Marco’s churns out classic plates like omelets and pancakes. At lunch, diners can dig into heaping Italian dishes like vodka rigatoni, lasagna, and shrimp scampi.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Marcos

Marco’s is located on the corner of Hana Highway and Dairy Road, about five minutes from the airport, making it a great stop before flying out.


Tight Tacos – Kahului

349 Hanakai Street

Whoever said you can’t find authentic Mexican food on Maui has never tried Tight Tacos. Here you’ll find Mexican-style street tacos, hand-pressed tortillas, salsas made in-house, and slow-braised meats.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Tacos

Their menu might be small – tacos, burritos, bowls, and quesadillas with a selection of proteins like carne asada and carnitas – but Tight Tacos’ authentic flavors are larger than life.


Fuego – Kahului

1333 Maui Lani Parkway

Fuego Argentinean Steakhouse is one of the latest restaurants to open in Central Maui. Located on the Dunes at Maui Lani Golf Course, Fuego boasts impressive views of the West Maui Mountains.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Dunes

Since its opening in early 2023, Fuego has been lauded for its fresh Argentinian fares, extensive wine list, and cozy atmosphere. Fuego is also open for breakfast.


Sam Sato’s – Wailuku

1750 Wili Pa Loop

Sam Sato’s is one of Maui’s oldest establishments, having opened in 1933. Today, it’s one of Maui’s most popular mom-and-pop eateries, and you’ll usually find a line of people waiting to get in come lunchtime.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Noodles

Sam Satos’ most famous dishes are dry noodles (dry mein with green onions and char siu pork), meat skewers, and cheeseburgers. Come early and prepare to wait for a table, or call in for a prompt pick-up.


Bistro Casanova – Kahului

33 Lono Avenue

Bistro Casanova’s eclectic menu combines Italian, French, and Spanish eats. Tapas, steak, seafood, and pasta are favorites here. But Bistro Casanova is best known for its legendary happy hour.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Bistro Casanova

Stop by between 4 and 6 pm for $5 draft beers, $6 wine carafes, and $6 margarita or mojito carafes. It’s likely you’ll see Maui’s business community letting their hair down with a few pau hanas. 


My Thai Maui – Kahului

230 Hana Highway

My Thai Maui is a chic Thai restaurant in an unassuming warehouse in Kahului. But the eats here are anything but unassuming.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Thai Food

The menu here features popular Thai plates like pad thai as well as more traditional dishes like kang juen woon sen (a Thai soup with pork, glass noodles, and vegetables). Can’t decide? Go for a fragrant green curry, or opt for pillowy orange chicken bao buns.


The Empanada Lady – Wailuku

2119 W Vineyard Street

Caribbean flavors and reggaeton beats are staples at The Empanada Lady. This garden cafe is tucked down a side street in Wailuku but is well worth searching for.

In addition to serving mouthwatering Caribbean fare like mofongo and empanadas, The Empanada Lady is known for its uplifting nightlife scene. On any given night, you’ll likely find live music, DJs, or dance classes going down in The Empanada Lady’s vibrant courtyard.


Bonus: Costco Food Trucks – Kahului

We couldn’t write a post about food in Central Maui without mentioning the Costco Food Trucks. There are two food truck lots on either side of the Courtyard Marriott across the street from Costco.

Top Central Maui Restaurants Food Truck Cusisine

You’ll find countless cuisines here: local food, smash burgers, Thai, fresh fish, noodles, vegan eats, coffee trucks, and tacos. If you’re not in the mood to sit down at a restaurant or need somewhere to eat in a pinch, definitely stop by the food truck lots. Old Haleakala Highway across from Costco.


Happy travels – and enjoy your eats!

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