There are many amazing things on Maui that us locals have never done. Tourists even seem to cram more 'MAUI TO-DOs" in a week than I have done in my lifetime. So, my girlfriends and I developed a "MAUI BUCKET LIST." It includes places, activities and all sorts of things we still have not experienced on this island we call home. We decided it was time to start checking some things off. So this past Saturday we ventured out of the Waiside and headed for the country. We rarely go to Haiku. We had to rely on Google maps to get us to our final destination, MAUI KOMBUCHA! We arrived hungry, thirsty and excited to experience something new. There was only standing room and we lingered on the side, a little unsure of how this whole place operated. We were greeted enthusiastically with four shots glasses of Palo Santo. We had no idea what it was, but that didn't stop us from clinking our glasses and sampling the Kombucha goodness. Next up, Ginger Lime and Lychee Juniper Lime. The mmmmm's and ohhhh's coming from our mouths were a clear indication that we just stumbled into heaven. We ordered a round of Kombucha and finally managed to get a table and begin the eating. Pupu style is the way to go here. Everything looked too good that you couldn't have one. We got the Quinoa salad and a Rainbow Roll Sushi to start. The mmmmm's and ohhh's couldn't be contained. Next, Da Kine Chili and the Garden Veggie Pizza! AMAZING! AMAZING! AMAZING! This is not an understatement. Every bite got better and better. Then came dessert, and I only need to say two words, HAWAIIAN TOAST! Some cracker, jam, bananas and a whole lot of amazingness! Another round of Kombucha and we were definitely experiencing a strong sense of elation. The two guys running the front of the house made the entire experience more pleasurable. The service was superior, their sense of humor entertaining, and we hadn't been called chicas that many times since...never. We were told to try the coffee. Mind you, 3 out of the 4 of us don't drink coffee. If I did drink coffee, it definitely would be that one. We all shared one cup of coffee and passed it around the table like a sacred ceremony. At this point the only word to describe the moment is bliss. Happy stomachs, souls and minds. Just when we thought we had done it all, we heard the word HOT SHOT. It already sounds dangerous and intriguing. The women next to us were raving about it, so we ordered one. It looked scary good. The initial sip isn't bad, but it's a creeper. The best thing to compare it too is Hawaiian chili pepper water. We felt alive after that one! As our Maui Kombucha experience came to an end, we didn't want to leave. Happy, happy is all we could say. Happy to be with friends, happy to eat good food, and happy to live on Maui.
To check out Maui Kombucha, click here!
We've recently done a super fun collaboration with one of coolest print artists in the state: Everything is Jake! His retro prints, inspired by each island in the chain, are so rad that we absolutely had to turn them into t-shirts, tanks and onesies for the babies! Specially for Maui Thing, he did the Haiku design above inspired by the world's largest surfboard fence! He also turned his Humpback Whales of Maui art into adorable little onesies for the keiki! We did a little Q&A with Everything Is Jake's genius behind the brand, Nick Kuchar and here's what we got:
Maui Thing: A little background on your business. When/why/how it started? Where in the world did "Everything is Jake" come from?
Nick: Everything is Jake officially started near the end of 2010 with me designing a few retro style posters for our house. My wife asked me to design some wall art as she was decorating the interior of our house (She has the same degree. It's a regular Bauhaus over here). It had great response, so I opened an online shop and started offering a more extensive catalog of prints. “Everything is Jake” is a saying from the early 1900?s which translates to everything is “fine” or “satisfactory.” Jake also happens to be the name of my devious & clever dalmatian.
Maui Thing: A little background on you?
Nick: I grew up surfing in Florida, so have always loved being near the beach. I studied Industrial Design at Auburn University. I worked in the exhibit design industry for a few years, and when I got married in 2005, my wife talked me in to taking an extended honeymoon to Hawaii. We fell in love with it and stayed. You can't beat the weather and culture here.
Maui Thing: Your inspiration?
Nick: Especially in Hawaii, inspiration is all around. Spending time outdoors and analyzing things around you can help cultivate a new idea for a design you have in your head. I also love old advertisements from the 40's and 50's. I find inspiration from anything from a vintage fabric swatch to an old longboard.
Maui Thing: Your favorite thing about Maui (or favorite "Maui Thing")?
Nick: Living on Oahu, I love to go to Maui and experience how peaceful and serene it is. The historic buildings of Wailuku, Kaanapali beach sunsets, and cruising through the upcountry are my favorites.
Maui Thing: Future plans for Everything is Jake?
Nick: I had the chance to be an extra on Hawaii 5-0 last year, and for the two seconds I was on camera I was staring at the ground holding a shave ice. So, I am assuming once the producers see that ground-breaking footage they'll call me back for a featured role. But, until then, I have a few commissioned print design projects I am working on, as well as some limited edition canvases I'll be offering in the shop!
Maui Thing: Most important piece of advice you would pass on to aspiring artists in Hawaii?
Nick: What worked for me is to find a niche that I really love. It's no fun going to work if you don't want to. Just start designing/painting/illustrating, and you'll find out what medium you like most. You'll also start to develop underlying patterns to your work that become your style.
Maui Thing: So why did you think working with Maui Thing was a good idea? (fishing for compliments, here obviously;)
Nick: I love collaborations! It's a chance for both companies to put their heads together and generate something really cool. Maui Thing is great because they are company that focuses on the positive. There are plenty of negatives all around, so why not make some rad clothing and accesories and celebrate our islands?!
Stoked on Everything is Jake? Be sure to check out more of his prints at his online shop here! And be sure to stay tuned for more fun collab pieces!