things to do in Hawaii

Chef's Table Experience

Mill House Restaurant Chef's Table Experience
Mill House Restaurant Chef's Table Experience

Maui Chef’s Table

January 8, 2016 Special guest post by Ashley Easley

Having eaten at many restaurants on Maui my husband and I were beyond excited when we heard about a new 7-course tasting menu at the Mill House Restaurant at the Maui Tropical Plantation.  My husband; a trained chef out of San Francisco was eager to say the least to see what Chef Jeff Scheer and his staff had up their sleeves.

mill house maui chefs table 5
mill house maui chefs table 5

After settling in with a glass of wine, out came the amuse-bouche.  A foie gras torchon served on a crostini with fennel jam.  My first time trying foie gras and it did not disappoint. What an incredible bite!  Rich and smooth with the perfect balance of salt and sweet.

mill house maui chefs table
mill house maui chefs table

Next up our first course.  Uku (snapper) ceviche lying on a bed of Ulu (Hawaiian breadfruit) that was pureed and creamy with richness similar to cheese.  On top of the Uku was a fresh slice of orange and a fragrant mint leaf.  When this dish was placed in front of me, my first thought was that it smelled like a fresh garden!  This rang true the whole evening as all the ingredients used are from the gardens that surrounded us or from farms all local on Maui.  Such a bright bite of food with so many flavors it truly woke up our pallet for more to come.

Second course honored the fresh vegetables grown on property.  Bright red tomato and fresh green beans sitting on top of sous vide tuna belly.  A perfectly soft-boiled egg with a creamy sauce that had a burst of lemon balanced the bite out beyond belief!

mill house maui chefs table 2
mill house maui chefs table 2

Third course was head cheese.  This was also something new for me to try and I was pleasantly surprised.  Braised in sherry vinaigrette with a house made mustard and topped with a jalapeno, honey and strawberry compote the combination of flavors worked so well. Tart from the vinaigrette and sweet strawberry and honey along the slightly spicy jalapenos made the head cheese a bite I will never forget.  I honestly wasn’t expecting to enjoy this course as much as I did.

Forth course was a poblano sausage in fresh made agnolotti (pasta).  Topped with corn, basil and crunchy onions.  The sauce made you wish you had a slice of bread to sop it all up with or maybe just lick the bowl if no one was looking! Seriously.  We were amongst friends at our table by this point and a few were guilty of drinking the sauce like a 3 year old drinking their milk out of their cereal bowl.  Delicious.

mill house maui chefs table 3
mill house maui chefs table 3

Fifth course poached Kalekale (snapper) in a lobster and shrimp stock topped with fennel and tomato.  The acid and tang of the tomato balanced the delicate smooth fish to make the bite complete.

mill house maui chefs table 4
mill house maui chefs table 4

Next up as our sixth course was a pork chop with fermented garlic, chayote, smoked crème fraiche and pickled ali’i mushroom from the Big Island.  The mushroom in this dish was the star.  It had been marinated in vinaigrette and the tartness really worked well with the pork.  Again balance.  This seemed to be the most common word my husband and I used to explain our dinner throughout the night.  The chef’s ability to balance each bite with just the right amount of acid, savory and sweet.  Perfection! Last but not least was dessert- the seventh course.  Rosemary cream with ice cream and a freshly baked slice of banana bread.  Almond brittle and a slice of banana on the side.  Never before did I think rosemary could be incorporated into dessert but after this course I realized that yes it sure can!  The crunch of the crust of the banana bread and the silky rosemary cream were magic together.

I came into this evening not knowing what to expect.  No idea of what the menu would entail or what surprise would be in store.   We love food.  We love good food.  More importantly we love well-balanced, locally sourced food that is made with love.  I believe that the best spice in food is love and you can truly tell that Chef Scheer loves what he does and respects the food that he has the pleasure of working with for these intimate yet casual chefs table dinners.  The balance he can create with flavors is a talent hard to find.

The chatter grew amongst the tables with every plate that came out about every ingredient and how thoughtfully placed it was in each dish.  He invited us all joining him for dinner to walk around and watch his love and passion being plated and was happy to answer any question with a smile.  It has been a long time since I was ‘wowed’ by a dinner experience.  Maui Chef’s Table is a unique experience and we were ‘wowed’.  One made for those that enjoy a culinary journey.  Those that have a desire to inhale the aroma coming off the plate just set in front of you and to try to deconstruct the ingredients based on that smell.  Three words seem encompass the whole night… Fresh Balanced and Love.  I know where I’ll be next weekend.

Maui Chef's Table Tickets are still available!

All photography was either taken by Mill House staff, from owners that have given us written permission, and/or purchased for use. We have all the rights necessary to use these images on our website.

tell us about your chef's table experience. Comment Below!
tell us about your chef's table experience. Comment Below!

Peʻahi Shows Her Teeth!

Clean waves, big swell, talented/experienced surfers. Can you ask for more? Just 15 minutes away from our restaurant, the north shore was thumping all day long and isn't showing signs of stopping. It's a funny thing. When you live on Maui, you can feel a change in the air when there's big swell. It's not just the salty mist in the air or the sound of thundering waves slamming the reefs.

Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer

Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer
Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer

When Jeff Scheer won the 2015 Aipono "Chef of the Year," everyone wanted to know more about the man behind the apron.  Our executive chef at The Mill House Restaurant sat down with us to share a few of his trade secrets.

interview with chef jeff scheer infographic
interview with chef jeff scheer infographic

Q: When did you start working here?

A: I started in May.  I actually didn't know I was coming down here until right before.  There was about a two-week negotiation and Maui Tropical Plantation ended up buying Maui Executive Catering and moving it down here and I was contracted as the executive chef.

Q:  I understand that you used to be the executive chef that catered the Haiku Mill. 

A:  Yes, a long time ago!

Q:  How was that?

A:  It was good; a lot of work.  It was really demanding.  We had several votive accounts in the beginning, which was how we afforded the commercial kitchen.  And that was how we built out our commercial kitchen space in Haiku.

Q:  What was the impetus for starting the Maui Chef's Table?

A:  Just to be creative.  I did a couple of gigs in San Francisco several years back.  One thing I noticed was a lot of people doing little chef's tables inside their kitchen during service.  I thought, "how cool" since we didn't do service each night, we could offer a more intimate and unique experience.  Bringing them into our kitchen was very inviting.  With a few tweaks and a couple of changes, we were able to create a really unique dining experience and I think that's how Maui Tropical Plantation discovered me.  Those chef's tables really took off and that was where I met the general manager, Francesco, and the owners of the Maui Tropical Plantation.

Q:  Where do you see this going now?

A:  Now we're doing the chef's table here.  They've built out a beautiful facility here, mimicking what we did in Haiku.  In a lot of ways, it's even better!  It's bigger, more spread out, its outside.  We have the 16 acre Kumu farms behind us.  The Mill House Restaurant is busy behind us, so when people come in, they see a lot going on.  The whole atmosphere is more inviting, more like a party.

Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer
Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer

Q:  How do you describe yourself as a chef?

A:  One thing is that if I don't know where something came from, I don't really like to use it.  That's kind of our motto in this kitchen, that we like to try to make and use every part of something.  Our menus aren't created and then we look for those items.  Our menus are created off the items and the produce and the meats that we get locally.  The menus are constantly changing.  In the Mill House, we use the whole animal.  We don't use anything that's been pre-vacuum sealed in bags.  We have several farmers that raise the animals for our restaurant.  We butcher everything in-house and we have to get really creative using the whole animal.  I break all the meats down myself right now.

Q:  Wow!  How did you learn how to butcher and break down the meat?

A:  A lot of practice.  I did hire a butcher from Oahu, and he was with  me for a little over a year.  He fine tuned everything for us.

Q:  That brings me to my next question.  It seems like the Maui chef's are so collaborative instead of competitive.  How do you explain that?

A:  We're all really good friends here on Maui.  We support each other.  That's what makes Maui special and that's what makes everyone better.  We're always trying to keep up with each other.  It's a little competitive, but that also brings a lot of comradery.

Q:  Is that normal in the chef community?

A:  No, I don't think that's normal anywhere!  But then again, we're not a normal group.

Q:  Is the closeness because of the island?  

A:  That's a good question.  I think we just all get along really well, and we all have something in common, which is that we're all trying to make Maui special.  Ten, fifteen year ago, there were very few chefs trying to do anything different and unique.  And now there is this younger generation.  We're all a year or two apart from each other, and we've watched each other grow up.  In the last five years or so, we've all obtained different titles, branched out and gone in different directions.  But we all carry the same genuine mission statement.  We're all trying to use local food and not ship anything in, making everything from scratch.  We're all trying to create a unique experience, not just for the people who live here but also for the people visiting the island.

Q:  How would you define success?

A:  I think success is being responsible for doing something you believe in. That is what makes this place so special.  This is the beginning stages of something that will be very successful.  We all know it.  Everyone involved knows and understands this.  There are very few places like this on the planet.  We're surrounded by the most beautiful farm, the most beautiful setting.  The Mill House Restaurant is currently under construction, but should be done by the end of the year.  I'm actually spending as much time working with the construction company as I am with my cooks to help develop something that is really, really special.  We're looking to create something unlike any dining experience out there.

Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer
Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer

Q:  So, Aipono awarded you Chef of the Year.  How was that?

A:  That was fun.  I didn't expect that.  It was crazy.  There are so many good chefs on Maui.  I was definitely overwhelmed by it.

Q:  What's your favorite piece of kitchen equipment?  

A:  I would have to say it's the pressure cooker.  It cooks things so much faster.  I've actually got the pressure cooker rocking right now.  It cuts my work time down.  We actually have a lot of toys back there.  The bandsaw is another favorite.

Q:  Do you have a favorite ingredient?

A:  It depends on the season.  We're heading into winter, so we're going to see a lot of citrus.  Kumu Farms is growing the most unbelievable certified organic corn right now.  I've been using cases of it every week.  I can't believe how sweet it is!  Coming from Ohio, I know my corn.

Q:  Speaking of that, how does a guy from Ohio progress to what you're doing now?  

A:  That's a good question.  I don't know.  I've been here for 13 years.  I love food.  I've worked for the food industry for…well, it's actually the only job I've ever had.  Maui was going to be short-term, but it just lasted longer and longer.  And now this is my home.   I've been here the majority of my adult life.

Q:  How do you describe your cuisine?  

A:  I would say, "rustic refined."  We don't do anything special.  We're very creative, but we're simple.  I've seen a lot of changes in my cooking over the years, but right now, we're keeping things really simple.  We stick with the main points and make sure our flavors are on point and our textures are on point.  We make sure it's fresh and then we put it on the plate, but we try to make these simple dishes look refined.  Maybe its put in a big bowl, or set up nicely.

Q:  How do you decide what textures go with what flavors?

A:  I look at everything.  It needs to have enough acid.  It needs to have enough fat.  And it needs to have crispy and soft.  Those are the four main elements for every single dish.  That's the first thing we ask ourselves, "Does it have enough seasoning?  Are the textures there?  Is there enough acid to cut through the fat?"  If you can obtain those, you'll have a successful dish.

2015-12-14_0005
2015-12-14_0005

Q:  Who has been your biggest influence?

A:  The other chefs on the island.  I think those guys have been more than influential for me.  Especially doing events with each other.  We all try bringing something new to the table, so that has been a big influence.  My instructor from the Maui Culinary Academy, who became a very good friend, is another big influence.  He's one of the most respected chefs in the industry right now.

Q:  How much time do you get to sleep?  It sounds like you're doing so much!  This job is a huge endeavor.

A:  Not that much sleep at all.  I'm here until 10:00 or 11:00pm.  And then I bounce back here in the morning.  It depends, but I'm here the majority of the time.  I take about one day off a week.  This is my life right now.  When I'm sleeping, I feel like I'm missing out on something.

Q:  What do you like to do on your one day off?

A:  I like to eat.  I play volleyball and kite surf on Sundays.  I try to spend as much time as possible outside since I know I'll spend the next six days inside.

Q:  Do you cook at home?

A:  I do.  I cook very simple at home.

Q:  When you go out, where do you like to go?  

A:  I follow my chef friends, so my two favorite restaurants are Migrant and Ka'ana Kitchen.  But there are a lot of chefs that are doing cool things right now.  If I'm on the Westside, I like to go to Sangrita.

Q:  Do you have any pet peeves in the kitchen?  

A:  So many.  Being unorganized is the biggest one.  That drives me absolutely insane.  Cleanliness is important to me, which as been hard with all the construction going on in the restaurant.

Q:  What are your three strongest qualities in the kitchen?

A:  Organization.  And I handle stress pretty well.  I've been in so many stressful situations that I can now say, "whatever is going to happen, is going to happen."  There's nothing you can do about it, so you might as well not over-stress about anything.  With my teaching background, I think that set me up for success in teaching in this kitchen.  I'm really organized in how we prep things out here.  I write every single thing out for recipes, with each one in grams and written in my words and the way I want things done.  I actually have all the recipes in an app and if someone asks me to show them how to make something, I'm able to point them to that app, where all the information they need is there.

Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer
Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer

Q:  Is there a cookbook in your future?  

A:  I'd love to say so!  Absolutely!  I'd love to do a cookbook.

Q:  All of your dishes are so artistic!  Is that learned or is that innate?  

Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer
Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer

A:  Definitely learned over time.  However, plating isn't something you can teach.  There are things I put down and I think, "Wow, that probably tastes great, but it looks like crap."  Over time, you figure out what works well and you definitely develop your own style.  My plate is going to look different from anyone else's plate.  I use a lot of broths, soups, purees.  I try to fit as much moisture in the dishes as possible.  Especially for something like the chefs table, where you're outside, fighting wind, heat, cold air.  We look for a few things to make that experience easier.  Adding a hot broth to a dish at the last-minute adds that moisture and flavor.

Q:  You prepare a lot of dishes that have different sauces and flavors that balance everything out, whereas eating one alone is too much.  Did you learn or develop that?

A:   I develop it as I go.  For example, I have a brined fish dish that is poached in olive oil.  The brine gets the seasoning into the fish, and to balance out the salt, I pair it with a vegetable stock and tapioca pearls.

Q:  So, no bread at the Chef's Table?

A:  We should do bread!  We make a beautiful artisan bread here and our pastry chef is doing some very cool things.  We mill our own grains.  The thing is I don't want to overfill people here.  I've watched people get way too full to the point of being uncomfortable.  I'd prefer them to walk away perfectly full.  Maybe they could eat a little more, but they haven't eaten too much.  You have some with small appetites and others are starving and we try to find that sweet spot.  If anyone is hungry at the end, and  I will happily feed them all day long!

Q:  Some chefs say that the food is only 30% of the experience.  Do you agree?

A:  I do agree.  Why do you go out to eat?  Is it primarily for the food, or also for the company and the surroundings?  You could have the best food in the world, but if the surroundings and atmosphere isn't there, then you'll walk away unfulfilled.  When I go out to eat, I'm looking to have the best time possible, because that's what eating out is.  It's supposed to be fun!  That's what we're trying to do here is create a relaxed atmosphere.  One of the things we have going for us here is that we have a lot of space and we're putting very few tables in the amount of space we have.  We could fit up to 1,000 people here once the restaurant is done, but we're only going to be seating 180-200 people so the guests feel like they have their own space to enjoy their dinner.  There will be a fireplace outside for wintertime.  We're also coming up with a great happy hour, and once the restaurant opens, the happy hour menu will become the permanent bar menu, with reasonable prices and a variety of tapas style plates.  Lets get real, no one orders their own entrée anymore.  That is the lost way of dining, in my opinion, because it's supposed to be about the experience you're having with other people.  That's the trend you see in all the restaurants now.

Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer
Interview with Chef Jeff Scheer

Q:  As the chef, what do you want people to feel after they have one of your meals?

A:  I want them to feel completely satisfied.  I want them to feel like they've eaten really quality ingredients and I want them to have a good time here.  That's how we're going to put this place on the map.  And I want it to be laid back, especially for the people on vacation.

Q:  Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

A:  I really don't know.  Anything could happen.  My life has changed so drastically every year, and it's unrecognizable from the year before.  I would like to say 5 years from now, I will still be in this spot and this location will be in a completely different level and the cuisine will constantly change and get even more creative.  I love this place!  It opening my eyes and its making me a better chef.  I don't really see anything out there that could provide a better experience.  We're in a really unique location and Kumu farms is the most amazing partner to have.  You can't get any  more fresh than having it in your backyard!  We have the Chefs Table going on, the bar, the restaurant, we have catering events, we have a concert hall.  I don't know what else is better than that!  I think I'll still be sitting at the same table in 5 years, being interviewed again.

Best Maui Restaurants
Best Maui Restaurants

Thank you Chef Jeff Scheer for taking time out of your crazy schedule to share the secrets to your success!  If you'd like to experience a dinner at the Maui Chef's Table, make sure to reserve your seat early, as they sell out pretty quick!

what do you think of maui's food scene? comment below!
what do you think of maui's food scene? comment below!

10 Things Hawaii Does Better Than Anywhere Else

Though 10 things are really just the tip of the volcano, we explore what makes Hawaii no ka oi.

One of the largest tourist destinations in the world, visitors and residents alike will tell you there's really nowhere else quite like the Hawaiian Islands. From the fascinating culture to the tropical scenery, surf, outdoor activities and cuisine, visitors of all ages don't have to look too hard to see the beauty of the aloha way of life.

10 things hawaii does better than anywhere else infographic
10 things hawaii does better than anywhere else infographic

#1 Coffee

As the only U.S. state able to grow coffee, it's safe to assume that anyone sipping their favorite Starbucks coffee beverage in the state of Hawaii is just plain missing out. Joining other 'Bean Belt' giants like Brazil, Vietnam, Indonesia, and Colombia, Hawaii-grown coffee can be found all over the globe, though there's no better excuse to try it than during a visit to the islands.

Although Big Island's Kona Coffee is the most well-known variety, Maui offers several locally-grown roasts sure to make you appreciate the wonder that is fresh caffeination.

best hawaii coffee
best hawaii coffee

We highly recommend a visit to our onsite Mill House Coffee Roasting Company, where we harvest, pulp, process and roast Red Catuai beans ourselves, in addition to offering other locally-grown varieties from West Maui's Ka'anapali Estate. Sit back, relax, and enjoy a cup of freshly roasted 100% Maui Grown Coffee with a view.

maui grown coffee
maui grown coffee

#2 Outdoor Dining

We love dinner on a crowded patio just as much as the next person, but unless that crowded patio also includes views of rolling clouds over tropical mountaintops and distant volcanoes, the smell of fragrant plumeria, and/or panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean, meh. We'll pass.

Though Hawaii restricts any commercial beach activity, including bars, cafes and restaurants, there are plenty of places to enjoy a delicious meal in a gorgeous setting.

things to do in hawaii
things to do in hawaii

Some of our favorites include The Mill House (have you seen our view?!), shrimp trucks on Oahu's north shore, Manele Bay breakfast views from Lanai's Four Seasons Resort, Volcano House in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, The Proud Peacock in Waimea Valley, and many more.

#3 Whales

Each year, thousands of North Pacific humpback whales migrate from Alaskan waters to the warm, shallow waters surrounding the Hawaiian Islands from November to May.

But what makes whale watching in Hawaii better than anywhere else?

Since they make the long swim specifically to mate, give birth, and nurse their young, this means a large number of baby humpback whales are frolicking around our islands, often learning important behaviors like breaching, pec slapping, spy hopping, tail slapping, and more. And unlike whale watching in colder climates, in Hawaii, you're able to whale watch from shore, by boat, stand up paddleboard, kayak, and even a helicopter ride.

hawaii whale season
hawaii whale season

Believed to be a representation of Kanaloa, the Hawaiian Demigod of Ocean Animals, whales have been depicted in ancient petroglyphs throughout the islands since the ancient Polynesian era, and we hope to see their continual rise in population over time.

#4 Board Sports

Because Hawaii is located in the middle of nowhere in the big blue Pacific, and is in fact the most isolated population center on Earth, it's no wonder that the ocean became second nature to the people who have called it home.

Once a popular activity among chiefs, the sport of surfing has a long and fascinating history in the Hawaiian Islands, and one that continues to draw thousands of surfers here each year to enjoy our amazing surf and weather conditions. But that's not the only board sport that originated here.

board sports hawaii
board sports hawaii

In the 1940's, Waikiki surf legends like Duke Kahanamoku and the AhChoy brothers used paddles and stood on their boards to better see their surf students and incoming swells, thus creating the first known SUP sport.

Athletes can also enjoy Hawaii's epic conditions for other board sports like windsurfing, kitesurfing, and even wakeboarding.

#5 Hiking

There aren't many places in the world where you can hike in a volcanic crater, through a bamboo forest, to a waterfall, along a mountainous ridge, and to a remote beach in the same day. Thankfully, Hawaii is one of those places.

Some of the most stunning (and uncrowded) locations in Hawaii are those that can only be reached by hiking trails, and we consider ourselves truly lucky to live in a place that makes other hiking destinations look like child's play.

what makes hawaii the best
what makes hawaii the best

For serious hikers, we highly recommend Kauai's famed Kalaulau Trail along the Na Pali Coastline or Maui's Kaupo Trail, while those with moderate levels of experience will enjoy Maui's Pipiwai Trail, the Big Island's Kilauea Craters Trail, and Oahu's Diamondhead Summit Trail or Maunawili Falls Trail.

#6 Talking Story

Anyone can talk, but not everyone can talk story, brah.

Since a written language wasn't introduced in Hawaii until the arrival of missionaries in the mid 19th century, storytelling was the primary way of passing down important information, including Hawaiian stories and ancient legends. Known as mo'olelo, the art of talking story continues to be a valuable practice for many in the Aloha State.

storytelling hawaii
storytelling hawaii

Today, getting together to 'talk story' generally means chatting, swapping stories, and sharing ideas, and is one of the best things to do with local residents when visiting the Hawaiian Islands.

#7 Weather

If you're the type of person who feels the need to break the silence or begin conversations with topics of weather, chances are you won't find much to say beyond "sure is beautiful today" in Hawaii.

hawaii weather
hawaii weather

With average annual temperatures fluctuating wildly between 73 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and a large number of microclimates that make prolonged, heavy rainfall fairly easy to avoid, it's safe to say the weather just got a whole lot better than wherever you flew in from.

Not a fan of sunshine, tropical breezes, dramatic sunsets and frequent rainbows? We hear Canada's great!

#8 Environmental Considerations

One thing you'll notice about the majority of Hawaii's beaches, as opposed to others we've experienced in popular areas of Mexico, Southeast Asia or even the Caribbean, is the lack of trash, waste and general pollution.

Not only does Hawaii take pride in the 'aina (land), but we also consider our role within the environment. Many companies and foundations recognize the growing importance of sustainability and eco-conscious tourism, and steps are being taken everyday to ensure we leave the islands set up for success for future generations.

10 things hawaii does better
10 things hawaii does better

Although there's still plenty of work to do, and many controversial issues at stake, residents have managed to win several groundbreaking measures to change the course of farming and land use on many of the islands.

#9 The Super Soft Sell

Another thing notably missing from Hawaii's beaches? The art of the hard sell. Or selling at all, in fact.

best things about hawaii
best things about hawaii

That's right. Remember when we mentioned that commercial activity is not allowed on beaches in Hawaii? That also includes hawking, peddling, pushing, touting, marketing, auctioning and vending anything, which means you can go back to reading your book in peace without awkwardly avoiding eye contact or returning home with seventeen new unnecessary souvenirs.

#10 SPAM

Hawaii does SPAM justice - we don't consume 7 million cans of it a year for nothin', after all.

While in Hawaii, you're likely to notice dishes like Spam Musubi, Spam Fried Rice, and Spam & Eggs on many menus. And should you develop a taste for it, or simply consider yourself a hardcore Spammer, simply plan your next trip in time to attend the annual Waikiki Spam Jam. It's a thing.

spam in hawaii
spam in hawaii

We hope to see you at our coffee house, restaurant or a Chef's Table event soon, and mahalo for reading!

what are some other things hawaii does better? comment below
what are some other things hawaii does better? comment below
All photography was either taken by Mill House staff, from owners that have given us written permission, and/or purchased for use. We have all the rights necessary to use these images on our website.

Best Maui Aerial Videos

Best Maui Aerial Videos

Maui is known for having magnificent picturesque views and landscapes ideal for shooting stunning photographs and video. With the popularity of new camera equipment such as  GoPro or camera-carrying drones, we wanted to share with you some epic footage of Maui from an aerial perspective.

See some of the best Maui aerial videos that take you through the island from a different perspective.

best maui aerial videos
best maui aerial videos

Humpback Whales in Maui from a Drone

This drone captured a mama whale swimming with her calf near the boat. To see the significant difference in size between the mother and the baby is quite amazing. The serenity of these giants swimming gracefully makes you feel very appreciative of the whale season we get to enjoy here in Maui. You can tell that it was a perfect sunny day with minimal waves and the pristine deep blue color of the sea.

[iframe id="https://player.vimeo.com/video/86812942" maxwidth="855"]

Farm to Table Dining via Drone

Things just got even more interesting here at the Mill House Restaurant, and dining for lunch, dinner andMaui Chef's Table will never be the same!  Drone delivery of produce will begin once FAA approval is granted for the Maui Tropical Plantation. The dedicated and talented Chef Jeff Scheer and his team of workers already are dedicated to seasonal, local ingredients, but this takes things one step further (and faster!) Once implemented, Drone to Table will allow us to eliminate the need of an off-road gas guzzling vehicle to harvest large amounts of produce.  The drone is more efficient and can deliver multiple small loads, cutting down on spoilage and offering even fresher produce from our property.  Get a glimpse of the Maui Tropical Plantation from above, where Chef Jeff carefully chooses many of the fresh ingredients.

And hurry before they sell out of Maui Chef's Table Tickets.

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Maui Sailing and Snorkeling at Coral Gardens with Shadowfax

This group of friends enjoyed a lovely time sailing to the Coral Gardens in their private Shadowfax Sailing yacht to explore the southwest coast of Maui. There’s neat footage of what the sailboat’s interior looks like, as well as aerial shots of coastal Maui and the sailboat. Then you are taken through a “chasing of the fish” underwater and through the corals. A great combination of aerial and under the sea footage.

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Molokini Crater

Pride of Maui captured the best footage of Molokini Crater taking you on a adventurous snorkel trip and even underwater! Meet the spinner dolphins, humpback whales, green sea turtle, and the eel. A fun video with upbeat music that truly makes you appreciate Maui and its marine life.

Get your snorkel on with Pride of Maui!

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Exploring Maui in a Porsche Speedster

Want to cruise in Maui with style with a 1957 Porsche? Awesome aerial footage capturing the Porsche Speedsters coasting past the crystal clear waters in Wailea towards the rugged lava field. You can rent these fancy cars at Maui Roadsters.

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Maui Bottom Fishing with Maui Fun Charters

Come aboard The Marjorie Ann, a 36-foot Chesapeake Bay Deadrise-style fishing boat and watch a group of people enjoy a memorable fishing experience! Equipped with the latest fishing technology and equipment, the staff of Maui Fun Charters helps their clients catch different sizes and variety of fish from several inches to several feet!

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Hana

Travaasa Hana Resort, hidden in the remote side of the island in Hana offers a place to relax and take your mind off your busy life. A camera-toting drone captures the entire property from above and you can see that the property is right next to the ocean. The video also captures some horses in a green pasture and the rough coastal waters formed by the lava rocks.

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Ka'anapali Beach

This video takes you through picture-perfect beaches of Hawaii. Flat, turquoise water and gentle rolling waves that can be enjoyed even by a toddler. At Black Rock, the blue water is shimmering and ideal for floaties and snorkeling. A daring diver jumps off a little cliff and the camera goes underwater, following the Hawaiian state fish, humuhumunukunukuapua'a.

Just be mindful that while Black Rock is known for its pristine snorkeling location, it does have a rip current. If a red flag is posted, do not go in the water. Understand how to get back to shore if caught in a rip current.

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Palauea Beach

EpiCapture Productions beautifully captured a Hawaiian Green Sea Turtle ("honu") and starts to zoom out to the crystal clear waters that overlook the coral formations. Just when you thought it couldn't zoom out more, it keeps going and going until you see a view of the West Maui Mountains. The details and high-quality imagery in this video are so well-defined that you can make out the ripples of the ocean and pinpoint the people swimming and relaxing on the beach.

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Jesse Richman Kitesurfing Jaws

Maui is known for having one of the biggest surfable waves, called Jaws, also known as Pe'ahi. When Jaws goes off, many locals take time off work to watch this spectacular event, so don't miss it if you get a chance. But be sure to have someone guide you, as it is tricky to find and often requires a 4WD vehicle.

Justin Edwards, the videographer behind Drone Above, captured renowned kitesurfer Jesse Richman tackling Jaws on October 28, 2015, and said, "The effort paid off when Jesse Richman just went nuts kitesurfing. The other guys windsurfing and kiting were really good...but Jesse is just on another level. It is like watching a super hero. Here is the footage I got of him."

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Manawainui Gulch in Maui

Manawainui Gulch is known for being the driest part of Maui. You can see in this footage that this part of Maui is bone dry to the brim with beautiful crispy landscape and dry cliffs in tones of yellow, light and dark brown. Even though right next to the ocean, this part of land does not get much rain or humidity.

Historically, Manawainui Gulch was filled with flowing fresh water, giving life to the surrounding land areas with tall Koa and Sandalwood trees. Old Hawaiian population used to thrive in this back-end of Hana when water existed. Now without the water flow, but occasionally with rare flash floods, this video captures what beauty is left.

Well, we hope you enjoyed these handpicked videos of the Best Aerial Videos of Maui and have inspired you to get creative to take your next vacation video to the next level!

Let us know below in the comments, which video you liked best!

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do you have any favorite aerial videos? comment below!
do you have any favorite aerial videos? comment below!

All photography was either taken by Mill House staff, from owners that have given us written permission, and/or purchased for use. We have all the rights necessary to use these images on our website.