Kalapaki Beach Hut or bust!

When you go to Kalapaki Beach, you can’t miss seeing Kalapaki Beach Hut, and when you see the Beach Hut, it’s hard not to stop in and get a bite to eat.

Owners Steve and Sharon Gerald opened it more than 20 years ago when they saw the previous tenant shutting down its operation.

“It’s a great location, and we’ve been real fortunate with the workers,” Steve said. “It’s kind of evolved. We built a little bit here, a little there. We prayed about it — we’re Christians — and we just trusted the Lord and went with it.”

“It” is great burgers, a solid breakfast menu and a variety of sandwiches, salads and mix plates. Steve said they use as many local products as possible on the Beach Hut’s menu. Local grass-fed beef, a few taro items — fries, buns and even a burger — Hawai‘i-grown tomatoes and onions, and fresh fish whenever possible keep locals and visitors alike coming back.

“We have a great customer base,” Steve said. “A lot of it is local-based, and we get a lot of return tourists.”

On their last visit, one Titan had the Bacon-Cheddar, and his guest Titan had the Aloha Classic. All Beach Hut burgers come with lettuce, tomato and Maui onion. The Bacon-Cheddar is almost self-explanatory, other than to say the whole is more than the sum of its parts. Add that smokey, salty pork and some high-test cheddar to the slight tang of a juicy, local grass-fed patty, and even a Titan will wish for a bigger mouth to get more into each bite.

The Aloha Classic, while a little less self-explanatory, is nonetheless mandatory at some point in every burgermeister’s career. That same local beef patty is again joined by the standard fixings, along with the sweet tang of pineapple and a generous hit of honest-to-goodness teriyaki sauce. Savvy eaters can add mushrooms to make the taste truly worthy of the phrase “Titanic” — it goes down fast.

The Beach Hut also has a shave ice stand with its own window. It features a huge rainbow of flavors, and overheated Titans in the know can get both ice cream on bottom and sweet cream on top. One intriguing flavor option is called tiger blood, a mix of cherry and coconut. As always, to unlock the refreshment superpower of shave ice, one should order at least three flavors.

The Beach Hut also offers a breakfast menu featuring classic items with a local twist such as Sweet Bread French Toast and straight-up local favorites such as Loco Moco. Ono!

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