Letter Of Aloha – Winter 2015

MHH_2026Skin. It protects, it breathes, it shines and is a tell tale of what lies beneath in terms of our health and figuratively in how we choose to adorn ourselves. When we created the theme for this issue we contemplated between the return to using butter and lard with eating skin of animals from a cultural point of view coupled with the growing chef culture of tattooing food related images onto their skin.

In the end, as the stories came together for our Winter 2015 is a common thread of a renegade food culture centered around risk taking, revealed itself to be about something deeper. Passion.

Passion is flavor. It’s the drive and commitment to eating high quality, good tasting food. Passion is in the compulsion to keep learning, to keep refining and to keep feeding others because there is no other life for those that cook.

This issue is a gallery made to honor those that love what they do so deeply, it’s become a way of life. You see this in the department, Meet Your Farmer with Doni Chong of Oahu, who is not the kind of farmer you’d expect. You’ll also see this in the passion and dedication with Pastry Chef/Owner Michelle Karr Ueoka of MW Restaurant, and of course in the latest creation by Isaac Bancaco of Ka’ana Kitchen at Andaz Wailea and his monthly Maui Chef Bloc dinner series which promises to be a culinary laboratory for the next wave of dishes to inspire the restaurants throughout Hawaii.

We interviewed a handful of chefs from across the Hawaiian Islands on what inspired their food tattoos. The stories we uncovered were inspiring and took our appreciation of the power of food to a whole new level. We made our own butter and returning lard to the table, recipes for eating skin, foods that feed your own skin and a highlight of natural skin products that are sourced and made locally in the islands.

This is the Skin Issue, but it’s also very much about eating and passion, transformation and stepping outside of the food box in order to enjoy bigger flavors with each meal. Skin is the rebel, the innovator and a return to deeper flavor.

Elena Rego