Imagine what it would be like if a restaurant, using ingredients from local farmers, came along and replaced a fast food restaurant . . . would that make your day? Would it be something to cheer about? Would you love the ability to choose healthy over fast food? Well then, your wish it about to come true.
Starting in late March 2013 Mauka Makai Restaurant will be opening in what used to be KFC in Pahoa . . . You read that right, a healthy, farm to table restaurant will be opening up in what once was a fast food establishment!
Mauka Makai Restaurant will be serving healthy meals using ingredients from local farmers and ranchers. Not only will the ingredients be local but as local suppliers are sourced (after visits to their farm by the chef) information about where each ingredient comes from will be made available at the restaurant as well as on-line.
Now if that alone is not enough to make you want to stop by and have a meal, let us tell you what else will be happening at this location: there will be a bakery, a culinary school, and even some computer classes. You see, Mauka Makai Restaurant is one of many seeds being planted and nourished by the Grassroots Community Development Group (know around town for The Keaau Youth Business Center and the Lehua Cafe) in an effort to help make Puna THRIVE, from the ground up!
The Grassroots Community Development Group will be using this facility to grow beyond their original mission of providing an alternative learning environment for the youth. They are evolving into the Hawaii Youth Business Center (HYBC) and will be teaching real world skills to the youth and the community at large. Skills that the youth need if they are to thrive in their future employment will be taught. Skills that employers wish to see in new recruits will be taught (including skills tailored to specific industries needs as HYBC partners with more and more local businesses). And finally that create tomorrows Big Island entrepreneurs.
Mauka Makai Restaurant will also hold special events each month where you can come and talk story with the farmers as well as the chef. These events will be part of “Insiders Dinners Club” which also will include daily discounts, farm tours, tasting of possible new menu items and more.
This is just the start of something amazing in Puna. We hope you join us as we evolve Puna from the ground up into a thriving and healthy community.