Popular Maui eatery gets second home

By Patti Pietschmann, Travel Diva

Here’s news that Oahu foodies will go ape over.  Peter Merriman,  one Hawaii’s top chefs, is bringing  his Monkeypod Kitchen to the beach  in Waikiki.  And, if it’s anything like his eponymous and exuberantly popular eatery in Maui it should attract a huge draw. The Valley Island site  sits on the  second-story of a building in a Wailea mini mall.  It is always knee-deep in roaring revelers.  You can  actually hear them the parking lot.  The craft beers, creative cocktails and delicious food are the main draw. True to Maui Monkeypod is very casual. Many customers arrive straight from the beach for the daily 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. happy hour. I figure that will be the case in Waikiki, too.

The culinary master  will take his toque to the Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort on Waikiki  this spring.  And smack in front the beach, open a colorful Hawaiian-stylish 12,000 square foot facility facing the sea.  And if it’s anything like his Maui operation it will prove a huge success.

Monkeypod outdoes itself at Outrigger

Merriman says  partnering with Outrigger on iconic Waikiki  “is  a dream coming true.” “It’s a way to share Hawaii’s bounty from its  ranchers, farmers and fishers. And to create a ‘merrimaking’ gathering spot for  kama‘āina (locals), visitors, friends and family.”

Hotel transformation

The Outrigger Waikiki is currently in the process of a $80 million restoration. And, if all goes according to plan it will re-open in late spring with a new upscale residential-style rooms and suites.

“ Outrigger and Monkeypod Kitchen’ synergy stems from our shared Hawai‘i roots and a desire for authentic experiences with world-class hospitality,” says Jeff Wagoner, president and CEO of Outrigger Hospitality Group. “Having Monkeypod Kitchen anchor the Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort will complete the transformation and make it a must-visit destination.”

Celebration of craft beverages

Monkeypod Maui

Photo of Monkeypod Maui by Richard Pietschmann

Photo by Richard Pietschmann

Like at his Maui Monkeypod,  Merriman will rely on local ingredients.  He will serve  fresh Kualoa Ranch oysters, Big Island goat cheese, Waipoli Farms organic greens and Maui Cattle Co. wood-grilled burgers.

The idea is for every dish  to “talk story’ (as they say in Hawaii).  And Merriman’s food just that.  Every menu item tells a tale. Especially during happy hour  when crowds sidle up to the bar to enjoy amazing appetizers, creative cocktails, draft beers and top wines. Merriman intends to offer the same experience on Oahu.

The pizza at Monkeypod Maui is delicious and a top seller.

Monkeypod Maui

Monkeypod  will function from morning to night serving breakfast, lunch, an all-day bar and dining room menu.

For more information about Monkeypod Kitchen, visit https://monkeypodkitchen.com. To book a stay at Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort contact a Pavlus agent at 800-528-9300.





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