Your Guide to the 2017 Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival on O‘ahu

Highlights from the festival featuring wine tastings, cooking demonstrations and more.
The 2017 Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival kicks off this month. Here’s what you need to know about the events happening on O‘ahu.
Photos: Courtesy of the Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival


Hawai‘i’s foodie festival of the year is back. The Hawai‘i Food and Wine Festival is hosting more than 100 local and international chefs, culinary personalities, and wine and spirit producers in celebration of the local culinary and agricultural industries.


The charity event promotes the use of local ingredients and benefits local farmers, fishermen, ranchers and chefs.


Held from Oct. 20 to Nov. 5 on the islands of Maui, Hawai‘i and O‘ahu, the schedule is brimming with wine tastings, cooking demonstrations and competitions. Here are some of the highlights on O‘ahu:


Raw & Wild in the Tank

Nov. 1

Love for the land goes a long way. O‘ahu chefs Lee Anne Wong (Koko Head Café), Nico Chaize (Nico’s at Pier 38), Shaymus Alwin (Azure Restaurant) and James Aptakin (Turtle Bay Resort), along with chefs from the Big Island, California and Washington, will demonstrate what farm-to-table really means. They’ll feature local ingredients foraged, grown, raised and caught in the Islands. Top it all off with cocktails, wines and beers from Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits Hawai‘i and Anheuser-Busch while you watch finalists from Kamehameha Schools and the Pauahi Foundation’s Shark Tank-style agricultural business plan competition, the Mahi‘ai Scale-Up, compete for $30,000 in project startup funds.

$95 general admission, 4 to 7 p.m., 440 Keawe St., click here for more info


Spice Market

Nov. 2

Walk between the Sunset and Sunrise pool decks at The Modern Honolulu and travel in time and space to the Silk Road, the ancient maritime trade routes connecting East and West. Thirteen chefs from the U.S., China and Japan are working with international spices and flavors such as cinnamon, pepper, ginger, cloves and nutmeg that were transported along these routes. The Spice Market will also feature fine wines, cool beers and talented mixologists from Hawai‘i, California and New York.

$225 general admission (entry at 6 p.m.), $225 First Hawaiian Bank MasterCard preferred access (early entry at 5 p.m.), $325 priority admission (early entry at 5 p.m.), 6 to 9 p.m., The Modern Honolulu, 1775 Ala Moana Blvd., click here for more info



Nov. 3

World-class wines and dishes are yours for the tasting. Spend a special Aloha Friday with 12 of the world’s celebrated chefs and 20 of the world’s top winemakers on the rooftop of the Hawai‘i Convention Center for the taste flight of any oenophile’s dreams.

$225 general admission (entry at 6 p.m.), $325 priority access (early entry at 5 p.m.), $500 VIP access (early entry at 5 p.m. and reserved VIP seating), $5,000 VIP reserved table for 10 (early entry at 5 p.m. and reserved VIP seating), 6 to 9 p.m., Hawai‘i Convention Center, 1801 Kalākaua Ave., click here for more info


Steamy Bowls

Nov. 3

Craving something steamy? Put your spin on the dance floor while these chefs put their spin on hot bowls of ramen and pho. Cool down with refreshing cocktails and beers. Then repeat all night.

$95 general admission, $125 VIP access with reserved seating, 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., Hyatt Regency Waikīkī Beach Resort & Spa, 2424 Kalākaua Ave., click here for more info


Hawaiian Cocktail Competition

Nov. 4

Local mixologists Chandra Lucariello, Kyle Reutner and Christian Self, as well as talent from Las Vegas and Brooklyn, will compete to create the next 21st Century Hawaiian Cocktail. Sip on the drinks along with the judges, chefs Roy Yamaguchi and Alan Wong, mixologist Julie Reiner and Bacardi brand master David Cid. The judges’ winner will receive $3,000 in cash and a trip for two to Bacardi’s portfolio distillery. The winning drink will be featured at The Kāhala Hotel & Resort, on Tasty by Buzzfeed, and stand alongside other iconic, classic Hawaiian cocktails such as the mai tai, chi chi, Blue Hawaiian, lava flow and piña colada. The fan favorite will win a two-night stay at The Kāhala Hotel & Resort.

$50 general admission, 9 a.m. to noon, The Kāhala Hotel & Resort, 5000 Kāhala Ave., click here for more info


Taste of the Seasons

Nov. 4

Twelve chefs from around the U.S. will take you off the sands of O‘ahu and through time with culinary creations inspired by the four seasons and Hawai‘i’s seasonal favorites. Or, for a full five-course dinner with wine pairings on the beach, choose the VIP access, which includes exclusive courses by chefs Michelle Bernstein (Crumb on Parchment, Miami), Jose Garces (Garces Group, Philadelphia), Hubert Keller (Fleur by Hubert Keller, Las Vegas), Richard Rosendale (Roots 657, Leeseburg, Virgnia) and Nancy Silverton (Mozza Restaurant Group, Los Angeles). With either experiences, you’ll get to top off your night with a fireworks show at Ko Olina Resort’s lagoon.

$250 general admission (entry at 6 p.m.), $250 First Hawaiian Bank MasterCard preferred access (early entry at 5 p.m.), $350 priority access (early entry at 5 p.m.), $500 VIP access (early entry at 5 p.m. and reserved seating), 6 to 9 p.m., Ko Olina Resort, 92-1480 Ali‘inui Dr., click here for more info


Keiki in the Kitchen

Nov. 5

Bring your keiki to decorate cupcakes with Ace of Cakes star Duff Goldman and meet Man v. Food host Adam Richman, 32 Hawai‘i Food & Wine Festival celebrity chefs, local farmers and the Hōkūle‘a crew at the Bishop Musuem. Your kids can compete against top chefs in hourly fitness challenges, check out the museum’s Hōkūle’a exhibit, and watch a cooking demonstration by Hōkūle’a crew member Gary Yuen. While purchasing your tickets online, your keiki may submit his or her best local recipe for a chance to compete and cook up the dish for a panel of celebrity judges in the Localicious Recipe Contest hosted by Richman. Category winners will receive a two-night stay at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina and a $500 cash scholarship. Judges include chefs Michelle Bernstein (Crumb on Parchment, Miami), Rory Hermmann (Sprout Restaurant Group, Barrel & Ashes, Los Angeles) and Keoni Chang (Foodland Super Markets, Honolulu).

$5 general admission, free for HMAA members with membership card (up to four family members—two adults, two children), Bishop Musuem members (and allowable guests) and keiki ages 3 and under, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Bishop Museum, 1525 Bernice St., click here for more info


Food Fight & Bloody Marys

Nov. 5

MW Restaurant’s Michelle Karr-Ueoka, along with Californian chefs Belinda Leong (b. Patisserie) and Margarita Manzke (République), will go skillet to skillet against Andaz Maui’s chef Isaac Bancaco, Poke Stop’s chef Elmer Guzman and Eggslut’s chef Alvin Cailan, in this battle of the sexes. As the chefs dish out their brunches, you can vote for your favorite, make your own drink at the Build Your Own Bloody Mary Bar (pictured), and try signature bloody marys and coffee cocktails by Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of Hawai‘i mixologists Chandra Lucariello and Dave Power. Alongside the main fight, two Hawaiian music bands will also battle: Ei Nei will compete against last year’s champion Pu‘uloa for a one-month contract at the Outrigger Reef Waikīkī Beach Resort’s Kani Ka Pila Grille.

$115 general admission, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Outrigger Reef Waikīkī Beach Resort, 2169 Kalia Road, click here for more info


Halekūlani Culinary Masters Gala

Nov. 5

If you’re willing to splurge, experience an epicurean lifestyle with a night dedicated to high fashion and food. This black-and-white-themed evening will feature an impressive six-course dinner complete with world-class wine pairings and a 3-feet-tall cake by Duff Goldman (Ace of Cakes). This will be a night to remember.

$1,000 general admission, $10,000 reserved table for 10, 5 to 10 p.m. (cocktail reception at 5 p.m., dinner at 6), Halekūlani, 2199 Kalia Road, click here for more info