Aloha! [Maui Part One]

by Jenn (eating bender) on July 8, 2009

Aloha from Maui, blog world!


Thank you all for your well wishes about the trip. It has been amazing so far! My mom and I have really been enjoying our time together. Since I will be living in Chicago, we want to make the most of it.

This post will be the first of several installments about our trip. I hope you enjoy!

We arrived in Maui on Sunday afternoon. I was fortunate enough to have the window seat, so I was able to snap some pictures of the greenery from the plane.


It is so green here! Absolutely gorgeous. After we landed, we picked up our bags and headed to our first destination on the island, a little town called Paia (also known as “Maui’s Coolest Little Town”). We got to our room at the Paia Inn and were greeted with a cute basket of chocolates on the bed.


Not just any chocolate. This chocolate was organic, and I have found that the longer I stay here, the more I have realized that the island of Maui is very committed to serving the freshest, most organic ingredients possible. Let’s just say that the land isn’t the only thing that’s green around here πŸ˜‰

Keeping with the green theme, my mom and I headed out to explore the little town and find a place to eat dinner. Papa Bender had provided us with a travel guide he found online that discussed some of the best eateries in Paia. We eventually settled on the Flatbread Company.


This restaurant features pizza that is wood-fired and uses all natural and organic ingredients. My mom and I started the trip off right by ordering a pair of margaritas πŸ˜‰ These were made with squeezes of fresh orange juice, lemon and lime. In other words, they were the perfect fruity cocktail!


My mom and I then split the restaurant’s Organic Salad, which consisted of sweet leaf lettuces tossed with organic celery and carrots, toasted sesame seeds, arame seaweed, blue cheese and a homemade berry viniagrette dressing. It was excellent!


For our main course, we decided to split our pizza in half so that each of us could get what we wanted most. For my mom, that meant the homemade sausage, which came with maple fennel sausage, sun dried tomatoes, caramelized onions, mushrooms, cheese and herbs. For me, that meant the vegan pizza, a cheeseless delight with tomatoes, onions, mushrooms and tomato sauce.

Yes, it was quite the combination. 1/2 sausage, 1/2 vegan please :) But both sides were delicious!


(Sorry for the bluriness, but the lighting wasn’t the best!)

Here’s one of my vegan slices:


This pizza was so good! The crust was homemade and so doughy – you know I was a big fan πŸ˜‰ We ate as much as we could until we were full. It was a great meal, and I would highly recommend this restaurant to anyone who ever visits Paia.

We spent the rest of the night walking around the town and seeing what else it had to offer. It had a health foods store that rivaled Whole Foods in terms of what it had in stock, as well as plenty of cute little shops and restaurants. And so ended our first night in Maui!

I will be back soon with another installment. Here’s a preview:


I hope all of you are having a great week so far! Please know that I am still reading all of your comments, but I won’t be able to answer any specific questions or emails until I return from my trip. I’m trying to catch up on your blogs where I can, but won’t have much time to comment until I return, either!

Mahalo (Thank you),


1 Lara (Thinspired) July 8, 2009 at 1:07 pm

Oh Jenn, how amazing! I’m so glad you got there safely and that you are enjoying yourself! I can’t wait for another update! I’d love to see more scenery pics (if you are taking requests! πŸ˜‰ )

2 Michelle C. July 8, 2009 at 1:23 pm

Hey Jen
I love your blog and your trip looks amazing! Maui is definatly a dream destination. Flatbread Co. is sooo good. They have a location in Burlington,Ma and I can imagine in several locations countrywide.

3 VeggieGirl July 8, 2009 at 1:31 pm

OHMYOHMYOHMY!!! Wish I was there – you must keep having a BLAST for me!! πŸ˜€

4 janetha July 8, 2009 at 1:31 pm

oh uber jealous of your vacay! the scenery is beautiful and that restaurant looks so yum! have a blast jenn!

5 Whit July 8, 2009 at 1:33 pm

Oh my, the scenery is BEAUTIFUL! I am SO jealous right now in cloudy NC. :) Enjoy yourself!

6 Danielle July 8, 2009 at 1:36 pm

Have a great rest of vacation!

7 brandi July 8, 2009 at 1:37 pm

i was hoping for some hawaii pictures this week :) It looks beautiful and looks like you and your mom started the trip off right with those awesome margaritas + pizza! That’s great that you can get some healthy and local food there.

I can’t wait to see more! Enjoy it!

8 Krista July 8, 2009 at 1:39 pm

Trip sounds fabulous so far! Is that a real bird in the last photo???

9 Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) July 8, 2009 at 1:46 pm

Glad you’re having such a great time!

10 Andrea July 8, 2009 at 1:49 pm

Glad you’re having a good time! So jealous :)

11 Maria July 8, 2009 at 1:49 pm

The water, plants, landscape is amazingly gorgeous in that last picture. Mmmm the pizza looks and sounds fabulous! Good to hear you are having so much fun πŸ˜€

12 Rose July 8, 2009 at 1:53 pm

Jenn, it looks like you are having an absolutely wonderful time! Super vacation :) Enjoy and cherish the time with your moms!

13 Jenny July 8, 2009 at 1:54 pm

dang mustang — i though you were going to Maui, not HEAVEN! organic chocolate, flatbread pizza– you are livin’ the life!

14 jenngirl July 8, 2009 at 2:14 pm

Amazing trip Jenn! I know that you and your mom are enjoying everything to the fullest! And oh man, I love margaritas πŸ˜‰

Looking forward to part two!

15 Melissa S. July 8, 2009 at 2:19 pm

what a great trip so far!!! i can’t wait to see more photos!! and enjoy the road to hana!!

16 Sara July 8, 2009 at 2:23 pm

Aloha! Maui looks fabulous! Can’t wait to hear more about your trip. Have fun.

17 Hangry Pants July 8, 2009 at 2:37 pm

Hawaii is like literally the only place I’ve traveled to. It’s just as pretty as I remember. Have fun!

18 Sarah July 8, 2009 at 2:50 pm

wow, looks amazing! I’m so glad that you’re having such a great time. I can’t wait for the next installments and to hear more about the trip—we DEFINITELY have some catching up to do when you get back from your awesome vacation πŸ˜‰ good thing my chicago trip is soon!

19 buffmuffy July 8, 2009 at 3:08 pm

Wow beautiful! Pizza looks great. Glad you’re having a good time!

20 ksgoodeats July 8, 2009 at 3:22 pm

Doughy crust?! YUM! I love the half vegan/half sausage! Haha!!

What gorgeous views!! Enjoy paradise – don’t worry about blogging you crazy lady!!

21 Bec July 8, 2009 at 3:29 pm

aww it looks like you and your mom are having a blast together!

22 Marianne July 8, 2009 at 4:52 pm

Seems like you are having an excellent time on vacation. That preview photo at the end is gorgeous :)

23 lauren July 8, 2009 at 5:26 pm

Looks like so much fun!! Have a blast!

24 ttfn300 July 8, 2009 at 5:35 pm

gorgeous my dear!! i love papa and how he sent you two on vaca :) enjoy!

25 Shelby July 8, 2009 at 5:44 pm

That last picture is not real. You must have gotten it from a postcard or something. I refuse to believe you went somewhere so gorgeous and did not take me with you. No way.

26 eatingbirdfood July 8, 2009 at 6:22 pm

It looks as though you and mama bender are having a lovely time. And who knew Maui was so green, not me! That’s awesome. Have a lovely time the rest of your trip Jenn.

27 Natalie July 8, 2009 at 6:53 pm

Maui looks amazing!!! I definitely need to take a trip there. Plus that pizza…yum :)

28 gina (fitnessista) July 8, 2009 at 7:15 pm

ahhhhhh AMAZING! i’m so happy you’re living it up in maui πŸ˜€ keep having a blasty and i will keep living vicariously through you πŸ˜‰

29 Anne K. July 8, 2009 at 7:40 pm

Wow, it looks so gorgeous there! It’s been my dream to go to Maui since 5th grade, haha. I’m jealous, but so happy for you πŸ˜€ I can’t wait for part 2 :)

30 Kristie July 8, 2009 at 8:39 pm

What an amazing trip so far! I’m so glad you’re having such a good time, it truly looks beautiful and so much fun. Can’t wait to see more of the Maui installments!

31 Emily July 8, 2009 at 9:00 pm

Jenn! Hawaii looks absolutely beautiful! I would love to visit (and maybe even live there). :-)

Glad you and your mom are having such a good time.

32 Rebeca July 8, 2009 at 9:45 pm

It looks sooooo beautiful! I’m glad you’re having such a wonderful time with your mom!

33 Pearl July 8, 2009 at 9:53 pm

so glad you’re having a good time!

34 broccolihut July 8, 2009 at 10:16 pm

Wow, it sounds like you and your mama are having a fabulous time! That vegan pizza looks so tasty.

35 Erin July 9, 2009 at 4:14 am

What an awesome way to celebrate graduation!! Enjoy yourself!

36 Marianne July 9, 2009 at 6:38 am

Check out Anthony’s coffee in Paia!! It’s quite yummy…so are the sandwiches. I spent last July and January working on Maui (doing tree research) and loved the coffee there. And I highly recommend hiking in the Haleakala crater (still can’t say it right!! or spell it!!). It is like being on the moon and there are some really cool plants (but then again I am a plant nerd!!).

Mangoes should be falling off the trees right now. I ate so many I am surprised I didn’t turn into one.

Hope you have a great time…lots to see and do!!

37 Sarah (from See Sarah Eat) July 9, 2009 at 6:59 am

That pizza sounds amazing! Enjoy the rest of your trip :)

38 leslie July 9, 2009 at 7:15 am

oh, it looks so gorgeous there! glad you’re having fun!

39 Aimee July 9, 2009 at 7:19 am

I ate there after driving the Road to Hana all day and LOVE IT!!! That is such a great restaurant. I also have the same type of pictures clinging to bamboo. We were trying to find hidden waterfalls!! Love love love reliving my last summer trip to Hawaii by reading your blog.

40 Andrea (Off Her Cork) July 9, 2009 at 7:24 am

So jealous! Of the great scenery and the eats! Have fun Benders! πŸ˜€

41 carolinebee July 9, 2009 at 8:51 am

Sounds amazing Jenn!!!! I’ve been to Waikiki but never Maui and my friends seriously RAVE about it- my bf always reminisces about the SMELL of Maui and how it’s the best thing in the world πŸ˜€ Have fun with momma!!! Can’t wait to see more.

42 CaSaundra July 9, 2009 at 9:13 am

Looks completely dreamy! You truly are one lucky girl–enjoy! =) I love going on vacays with my mom!

43 Erica July 9, 2009 at 9:33 am

Hey girly! Glad you’re having fun in Maui so far!!!! Fabulous that the island is so dedicated to organic food- must make food decisions that much easier. That salad AND the pizza look fantastic. Enjoy every minute

44 Katie July 9, 2009 at 1:50 pm

Wow! I’m so jealous! Glad you’re enjoying your trip and I look forward to reading your future posts.

45 elise July 9, 2009 at 1:50 pm

hahaha, oh my god its like re-reading about the vacay i JUST took! we nearly overlapped. looks like you went on the hike off the hana highway?

i went to the flatbread place too! have you been to merriman’s? you should definitely go!!

46 tiffanie July 9, 2009 at 3:50 pm

is that last picture from the Garden of Eden on the Road to Hana? we went there and had a picnic lunch with some wild peacocks! :)

47 Paige@ RunningAroundNormal July 9, 2009 at 5:49 pm

Maui!!! I love love love Maui. And Paia is amazing. I truly hope you enjoy every minute (and I’m not sure how you couldn’t!) That restaurant was a great find, too.

48 kahluaabba July 10, 2009 at 8:55 am

It sounds like you are having an absolutely amazing time. The pizza looks so delicous and the whole island looks like paradise with all the greenery plus the organic and natural foods…. heaven :)

Take care ad have a great trip!

49 dailygoods July 10, 2009 at 12:57 pm

have a WONDERFUL trip! im so happy for you :) cant wait to see more! xoxo

50 Emily July 10, 2009 at 8:50 pm

SOO glad your having a safe and enjoyable trip! Look at that pizza! YUM!

51 justine July 11, 2009 at 7:20 am

Man, I love Hawaii. My parents loved it so much they visited 15 times and I was fortunate enough to accompany them a few of those times. It is truly a beautiful place and the people there love and take very good care of their land. Hope you are having a fab time!!


52 Shannon, The Healthy Beach Bum July 11, 2009 at 9:10 pm

Those cocktails look so fresh and delicious ! Very jealous of your summertime adventure :) Have an amazing trip!

53 Heather Eats Almond Butter July 12, 2009 at 11:06 am

That last picture is amazing. Looks like you and your mom are having a wonderful time. I totally would have split a vegan pizza with you – looked delicious!

Eat some macadamia nuts for me.

Einstein Bender thanks you for his b-day wishes. :)

54 Erin July 12, 2009 at 11:13 am

Oh Jenn, it looks BEAUTIFUL there! I’m so thrilled you guys got to get away! That salad looks lovely! I hope you literally stuffed your face with the pizza – looks amazing :)

55 lilveggiepatch July 12, 2009 at 9:41 pm

Looks like you’re having a fabulous trip! I just watched Forgetting Sarah Marshall (ha, forgive that movie drop) and Hawaii looked BEAUTIFUL.

56 Ryane July 13, 2009 at 7:25 pm

Yummmm, we have Flatbread here in Portsmouth, NH too…. I can go to freakin’ town on their crust. I found it amusing that their locations are in New England aaaaand Hawaii… hahaa

57 Danielle July 13, 2009 at 8:36 pm

Jenn it looks beautiful! I’m so glad you’re enjoying it! Have a fantastic vacation in every which (green) way πŸ˜‰

58 Heather Eats Almond Butter July 15, 2009 at 6:42 am

Got your postcard Jenn – made both CD and I smile, Einstein Bender too! So Glad you’re having a great time.

59 Jess July 15, 2009 at 8:29 am

The pizza looks SO good! Can’t wait to hear about your trip!

60 Gena (Choosing Raw) July 15, 2009 at 12:02 pm

Hellooooooo gorgeous! What a trip. I’m very jealous!

61 Diana (Soap & Chocolate) July 16, 2009 at 9:27 am

Mother o’gawd, who DOESN’T want to be in Hawaii right now?! Way to work it, Bender. :)

62 Julia July 16, 2009 at 4:27 pm

That pizza and salad looked fabulous! I may have to consider Maui for my honeymoon after this info!

63 Sarah July 20, 2009 at 6:14 pm

Oh, wow, there is a Flatbread Pizza Co. in my hometown up in NH! It has the same logo, same salad, and same pizzas on the menu, and same green mission–but I never knew there was a restaurant out in Hawaii…. Cool! (Wasn’t it sooo yummy?)

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