Maui Tacos – Pearl Highlands and Kailua Town
Maui Tacos is an island franchise with six locations spread throughout Maui, Oahu, and Big Island. The Oahu locations are in the Pearl Highlands Shopping Center food court and Kailua Town center.
Maui Tacos calls themselves a “Mexican Surf Grill” that fuses fresh Mexican foods with the exotic tastes of Hawaii. What exactly does that entail? Think of this: Hawaiian BBQ pork, fish tacos, mango and pineapple salsa, and coconut flan. Doesn’t that sound intriguing?! Well it’s time to taco ’bout it!
My best friend and I decided to come to the Pearl Highlands location after running errands at Sam’s Club downstairs. We were pretty surprised that Maui Tacos is a casual sit-down restaurant because we had the impression it would just be the typical takeout spot in a food court. They sell alcohol, too, which was another pleasant surprise; however, since we were going to continue running errands, we decided not to try any of it. Good to know, though!
Here’s what we decided on:
We did not expect this much food! The tacos weren’t the typical corn tortilla tacos that you get from Mexican spots, and the taco salad was enormous! Portion wise, this place is a great choice when you want a lot of food without breaking the bank. Honestly, we could have just halved the taco salad and one taco.
The fish tacos were flavorful and went well with the rice and beans. I’m glad we chose the cilantro rice instead of Mexican rice because it paired so well together! It was such a fresh tasting combination.
This shrimp taco stole the show. We wished we got three of these instead of the fish! The shrimp is seasoned with Aztec spices and a chipotle aioli-it’s such a flavor bomb! We got the mango salsa on the side because I’m allergic to mangos, but my friend enjoyed the flavor combo and we both agreed we would get this again.
If I’m being honest with you, I usually don’t like chicken. It’s my least favorite protein. However, the shredded chicken in this salad was so flavorful and moist that I told myself (for a day) that chicken isn’t that bad. We hoped there was a little more chopped greens in the salad, but that’s just us being salad snobs. The shell came out warm and tasted like they had just fried it.
All entrees come with fresh chips and mango salsa. I couldn’t get a good picture of the chips because I ate most of them mindlessly while waiting for our food. I appreciate fresh chips and love that they can do this in a fast-casual restaurant.
Overall, we were happy with everything that we got and would come back again to try more of the fusion items. Let me know what you would try from Maui Tacos in the comments.