Romantic Maui Restaurants

Music may be the food of love, but when it comes to romantic dining, these restaurants are playing your song.

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Story by Becky Speere

Casanova Italian Restaurant & Deli

Seared scallops in caper-brown butter sauce.
Tiramisu.

What better place to begin our journey than one named for history’s most famous lover? Sage- and brown-butter ravioli is my favorite dish, but tonight my husband and I are letting Chef Lorenzo Alvera guide our culinary adventure. We snuggle into our corner (table 19, if you’d like to request it), and soon our server, Brittany Smith, delivers the first course: butter-seared scallops topped with tobiko and capers. The sweet ocean flavors burst with each mouthful. Next, half-moon-shaped mezzaluna ravioli filled with artichoke and ricotta, topped with flash-fired gamberini, and slathered in a rich, creamy lobster-saffron sauce; it’s so mouthwateringly sublime that we use the hearth-fired focaccia to soak up the remaining sauce until only the white plate remains. The entrée Alvera prepares is a New York strip loin served with—what else?—a grilled lobster tail with a ramekin of warm rosemary-infused butter, creamy garlic mashed potatoes, and a mélange of fresh sautéed zucchini, bell pepper and tomato. The bed of arugula and Parmesan under the steak is classic, light, and a great foil to the richness of the lobster. Luckily, we’ve saved just enough room for our favorite ending: tiramisu. The chocolate and mascarpone, layered with ladyfingers and dipped in espresso, pairs well with our chianti. As we leave, Smith shares with us that Chef’s wife is also dining here tonight, and he’s prepared the same dishes for his love. 1188 Makawao Ave., Makawao, 572-0220

Love Bites: Casanova Italian Restaurant & DeliThe Mill House at Maui Tropical PlantationHumuhumuPacific’O5 Palms Restaurant

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