Mele Kelekmaka!

by Mark

No that’s not some new dish from my last travels to New York City, but “Merry Christmas” in Hawaiian. Once again I was fortunate enough to travel to Maui for the Christmas Holiday. I wanted to wish all of my friends, colleagues, subscribers, and clients a very Merry Christmas from the Islands. I am staying at the Ritz Carlton in Kapalua and enjoying many great meals from my CIA alumni brother and Executive Sous Chef at the Ritz, Marc McDowell. The food at all of the restaurants is superb with no only the finest raw ingredients.

I was able to have my birthday dinner with some friends from San Antonio who were celebrating a belated Honeymoon on Maui, at the Banyan Tree. Chef Jo Jo came out after each course and enlightened us with his special preparations for us. It was one of the top ten meals that I have had in my life!
Thanks Ruben and Lori for sharing it with Alexis and I.

The property itself is unbelievably beautiful. At Christmas time, they light up all of the trees on the property and it just looks magical. The Tower that I am staying in is slated to be torn down in April 2006 and replaced with Ultra High End Condo’s and Timeshares from Ritz Carlton. The local shoppes on the property are going to be razed and a Grand Luxe Spa is going to be built in it’s place. The beach here is one of the most serene I have ever seen. It’s too bad that in the future, only the owners of the condos and timeshares will be able to see it.

As many of you know, I have been bitten by the “golf bug” this year. Yes, I did bring my clubs on the trip and my good friend Ruben and I played at the Plantation Golf Course. The upcoming Mercedes Championship is the start of the PGA season and I must tell you that it was one of the best golf days I had. The scenery of the mountains, deep blue ocean, and of course the whales off in the distance breaching the surface of the ocean was a site to behold.

We had the great fortune of playing with a father and son team who were also from Texas. (See, it is true how all of us Texan’s stick together no matter where we are at!)
Don’t worry Herb and Sam, the pictures are on the way.

I have eaten more Sushi this past week I think than I have ever eaten back home in a month! Thanks to Tadashi son for the great Toro and Otoro at the Ritz Sushi Bar. You guys are the best. Arigato

Have a Great New Year and I look forward to sharing 2006 with all of you!


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