30 Alahele Pl., Kīhei
El Carrito Kīhei is an Argentinian cuisine food truck on Alahele place. The cuisine focuses on Argentinian street food, meaty and rich sandwiches, and hand held meat pies called empanadas. The Lomito is a sando on a crusty baguette, crammed full of tender rib eye, ham, swiss, lettuce tomato, topped with a fried egg and aioli for $24. You can add hand cut fries for $3 but we hacked the menu and asked for a side salad that lightened the meal with their delicious pickled veggies. We also tried their choripan, which is a homemade Argentinian grilled sausage on a crusty baguette that ranges from $15-18. El Carrito features 6 different types of choripan, with varying condiments and veggies on them. We had the porteno which is melted swiss, sauteed mushrooms, lemon zest and chimichurri. Others versions had bell pepper and eggplant, avo and pickled onion, grilled pineapple and mango, and bacon and egg. This is the place to come hungry. Argentinian empanadas come in steak, chicken, and veggie, and are $7 each. They also have a popular arroz con leche dessert.
Paukukalo Sweets and Treats
By Happie Happie Joie Joie
302 Waiehu Beach Rd., Wailuku
Paukukalo Sweets and Treats has opened at the old Paukukalo Store location breathing new life into this neighborhood hub of good eats. The offerings of the menu range from coffee and fresh baked pastries from the bakers, as well as savory grab and go breakfast items like a rice and eggs bento with breakfast meats like bacon, spam and portuguese sausage, and spam musubi. The bakery has soft pillowy pandesal, hot dog rolls, donut holes, malasada, black bean anpan, ensemadas, and danishes. I have fallen for the anpan, and graduated to raiding their cake selection. The bakery sells various slices of cake in different flavors like ube, coconut, pineapple upside down, and coffee cake daily. PST has also reinstituted the Paukukalo burger. The Pakus burger is back in a delicious juicy new form for just $5. You can also get a deluxe version. PST also has a selection of daily specials that include hot plate lunches, and fresh salads. Happie Happie Joie Joie, the bakers behind the Paukukali Sweets and Treats also does catering and special cake orders. You can check out their social media on instagram and facebook for more information. They open at 6am.
14 Hoʻokele St., Kahului
Chick-fil-A opened in September of last year, and has provided a fast food chain of food that is focused on chicken and quality. I stopped in and took a look at their spacious dining room, it seats 114 guests with an additional 46 seats outside. Each table in the interior had a little vase with fresh flowers, which was a nice touch. The restaurant itself is a chain for Atlanta, and is open for breakfast at 6:00 AM through dinner closing at 9:00 PM. They make chicken two ways, grilled and fried, and there is a variety of meals with which they utilize it. My go to at Chick-fil-A is the cobb salad, with the unsweetened ice tea. Their nuggets and chicken sandwiches are popular, as are the drinks, shakes, lemonade, ice tea, and cookies. They have a line of specialty sauces as well, which have become routine in my kitchen.