Hyatt Regency Maui wins Gold and Silver at 12th Annual 'Aipono Restaurant Awards
Japengo Pacific Rim Restaurant & Sushi Lounge received a Gold in the Best Sushi category, its sixth ʻAipono Award since 2012, when it earned Silvers for Best Sushi and Best New Restaurant. Japengo also earned a Gold for Best Pacific Rim Cuisine in 2013.
Drums of the Pacific, the Hyatt’s newly renovated lu‘au, tied for Silver with the Feast at Lele in the Best Lu‘au category.
The awards bring to sixteen the number of ʻAiponos the Hyatt Regency Maui has received since the competition began in 2003. In 2007, Son’z at Swan Court won the Gold for Best New Restaurant; as Swan Court, the same location earned Golds for Best Resort Restaurant and Best Special Occasion Restaurant in 2003. Umalu earned a Silver for Best Cocktails in 2011, and Weeping Banyan a 2008 Silver for Best Lobby Lounge. The Hyatt itself received a special Excellence in Sustainability award in 2011. The following year, it hosted a sold-out ʻAipono Gala.
‘Aipono combines the Hawaiian words ‘ai (food) and pono (excellence) to encompass the theme of exceptional dining. Sponsored by Maui No Ka ‘Oi Magazine, the ‘Aipono Restaurant Awards annually recognize the best of Maui’s food, wine and hospitality industries as determined by ballot by the readers of Maui No Ka‘Oi.
Some 350 restaurant professionals and industry supporters attended the 2014 ‘Aipono Gala, held in the ballroom of the Four Seasons Resort Maui. The event is a benefit for the Maui Culinary Academy at the University of Hawai‘i-Maui College. The gala also provides a rare mentoring opportunity for Academy students, who spend the day of the event working side by side with professional chefs in a real-world restaurant environment.