You then move on to my favorite part of the meal, a selection of seafood on ice, including snow crab legs, shrimp, poke, sashimi, and oysters on the half shell. I wasn’t brave enough to sample the oysters, but I can vouch for the quality of the crab, which was absolutely superb. Sadly, the shrimp couldn’t match that quality, and were lacking in taste, which was a great shame.
The selection of entrées was very comprehensive, with something for everyone’s tastes. There was teriyaki chicken, barbecue beef brisket, grilled mahi mahi with tropical salsa, pizza, vegetable chow mein, miso-glazed salmon, pizza, and rigatonia carbonara among the offerings during our stay. I found the items I sampled to be a bit hit or miss. For example, the salmon was absolutely beautiful, while the mahi mahi didn’t impress me, as it had been overcooked. There was also a carving station for meat eaters, which I didn’t sample, but my husband had no issues with the quality of meat he got from there.
To go with this, we could choose from a range of seasonal vegetables, including some unusual options, which I always enjoy seeing on the menu, such as roasted squash with eggplant and bell peppers, stir-fried long beans, and sautéed broccoli.
This line-up of food is enough for most people, and I have to confess on our first visit to Makahiki, I did suffer from that buffet-diner's problem, with very little room left for dessert. Having managed to force myself to sample a few (for research purposes of course!), I made sure that on our return visit to the restaurant, I was a little more restrained, as the desserts here are definitely worth saving room for.
Again, there’s plenty to pick from, although I found a couple of firm favorites during our meals. The first was the guava cake, very unusual, and full of flavor. I absolutely adored it! A close runner-up was the tropical coconut panna cotta, which was just beautiful. The molten chocolate cake was divine, but also exceptionally rich, and try as I might, I couldn’t manage much of it as a result. Other options included the more traditional chocolate brownies, bread pudding, cookies, and Rice Krispie treats, just in case you were thinking that all the desserts were on the unusual side.
The service here was, a bit like some of the food, a bit hit and miss. We weren’t there at the busiest time, and Makahiki was pretty deserted, and yet we didn’t get the attentive service we'd hoped for.
Dinner here doesn’t come cheaply, although having said that, this is a Disney resort, with associated pricing. On our stay, dinner cost $43/adults, and $23/children. It’s hard to compare the price to anything at a Disney park, as most buffets there come with characters, but Epcot's Biergarten is only a few dollars less. However, to charge this much, they really do need to work on ensuring that all of the food at the buffet is spot on, along with the service. I’d certainly go back to Makahiki on a return visit, as it’s a good way to load up for the night, and it is a beautiful setting, but it is an expensive meal, and I’m not sure whether, for us, it would warrant more than one visit per stay.
Aulani - Makahiki
Some of the options at the dinner buffet. - photo by chezp
About the Author: Cheryl and husband Mark live in England and love to travel, particularly to Disney, and they have made numerous visits to destinations across America and Europe. They recently completed their tour of every Disney theme park around the world, which culminated in their visit to Japan, including the Tokyo Disney Resort. Click here to view more of Cheryl's articles!
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