By Lora Chow
Kihei is a lively town just 5 minutes north of the upscale Wailea beach resort area. It is teeming with a wide variety of bars and restaurants to suit any happy hour taste. Tom and I are sure you will enjoy these lively spots.
- South Shore Tiki Lounge is one of several Tiki themed bars on Maui. However, this is our favorite with its’ lively atmosphere, kitschy tiki décor, and a good mix of locals and tourists. And naturally, it has a fantastic happy hour menu. Beverage happy hour is from open to 6pm featuring $3 beers and $4 wells, bloody marys, and margaritas. Snacks are on discount between 3-6 pm. You can’t beat $3-4 nachos, calamari, sliders, and chili cheese fries. However, Tom and I veered off the happy hour menu to sample the lounge’s specialties: tiki drinks and pizza. The pizza is as tasty as can be and will leave you with leftovers for later. And the tiki drinks are delicious and potent. Spend some time here and enjoy the live music and chatting with the locals.
- Ambrosia Martini Lounge is an upscale bar in Kihei featuring high-end liquor and amazing martinis (of course)! Happy hour is daily from 7-9pm and all night on Sunday. Ambrosia is more of a late-night spot and can get very crowded with locals and tourists. However, happy hour is a great time to pull up a stool and chat with others while sipping on specialty half-price martinis. Be sure to try one of the concoctions featuring local ingredients, such as lilikoi (Hawaiian passionfruit). Tasty and refreshing.
- Kahale’s Beach Club (no website) is truly a local’s bar in Kihei. A little rough in appearance, we highly recommend checking this place out. Go here to escape the tourist scene and strike up a conversation with the friendly locals. Happy hour runs from open to 5pm. Tom’s favorite beverage was concocted by Nancy: a spicy and potent Bloody Mary. You will be surprised that although the establishment looks like a dive bar, the ingredients are fresh and homemade. One of the best parts of the drink is the house made pepper water to soak the pickles to make them nice and spicy. This is the perfect way to get your day going!
For those homebased in the more Northern Maui beach locales, make your way to Lahaina. This beach town is very walkable and has a lovely historic district located on a stretch directly adjacent to the water.
- Frida’s Mexican Beach House is the most upscale happy hour spot on our list. Although it’s beachy elegant, Frida’s is still very laid-back so that patrons wearing beach wear feel as comfortable as those more well-dressed. Happy hour runs from 3-4:30 pm and features discounts on food and beverages. Since this is a Mexican restaurant, try one of the amazingly tasty tequila concoctions. Naturally, they make a mean Mai Tai for those who want to stick to more Hawaiian flavors. The food is incredibly fresh and tasty. It’s not covered in sauce and cheese, which is a bonus in our book. The two-taco plate is a perfect complement to the refreshing beverages. Be sure to ask for the mango-habanero salsa. It’s spicy and addictive!
- The Dirty Monkey is located across the street from the oceanfront in historic Lahaina. Their specialty is whiskey and if that spirit is your poison, be sure to make your way here. Happy hour runs from 3-5pm each day and features $2 off select beverages and appetizers. The draw for us is their pickle chips. Crispy and not a bit greasy on the outside, and full of warm dill pickle goodness on the inside, this snack is the perfect complement to any beverage.
Maui is a fantastic place to get away from it all and relax with a refreshing drink and delicious bites under the sun. Be sure to check out some of these tasty locales!
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