Holland America Line guests cruising to Hawaii and Tahiti can say aloha to eight new culinary-themed Food & Wine excursions that will immerse them in the islands’ colorful and flavorful cuisine! These additions are part of the nearly 100 tours around the world developed in partnership with FOOD & WINE magazine, exclusively for Holland America Line.
During these exclusive tours, guests take hands-on cooking classes with top restaurant chefs, go on culinary walking tours, visit wineries, sample authentic street food, explore local hideaways and more. In addition to Hawaii and Tahiti, FOOD & WINE tours are currently offered in Asia, Australia/New Zealand, Canada & New England, the Mediterranean and Northern Europe.
Unique Flavors of Hawaii Featured on New Tours
Hawaiian cuisine is a colorful tapestry of flavors, with a melting pot of traditions from all over the world. Yet there are culinary tastes that are distinctly Hawaiian, and they all come together on six new FOOD & WINE tours in Honolulu and Kona and on Kauai and Maui. In addition to exploring the gastronomic side of Hawaii, the tours also feature some of the most scenic and notable sites on the islands.
On the “Famous Oahu Sites and Bites” tour, guests get a memorable taste of Hawaii’s buzzing food scene at one of star chef Ed Kenney’s hot local restaurants while also taking in Diamond Head, Waimanalo Beach and Pali Lookout in the rugged Ko’olau Mountains.
Kauai features two FOOD & WINE tours: “Princeville, Hanalei & Kilauea Bakery Pizza” takes in Opaekaa Falls, Hanalei Valley and Hanalei Beach before lunch at Kilauea Bakery & Pizza, a wonderful find on the island’s north shore that has been featured in FOOD & WINE magazine. “A Taste of the Garden Island” tour offers delectable treats from one-of-a-kind specialty stores, well-regarded local restaurants and under-the-radar food trucks that are practically unknown to tourists. Along the way, the tour makes six stops where guests meet owners and chefs who proudly introduce their culinary creations.
“Scenic Maui and Hona Pizza” in Lahaina features the Iao Valley, also known as The Valley of the Kings, as well as Maui Tropical Plantation, with 2,000 surreally lush acres of pineapples, sugarcane, plumeria, orchids and other types of Hawaiian flora. The culinary centerpiece is a stop at Honu Pizza, where the pies are topped with seafood and other local treats.
Kona offers two FOOD & WINE tours: “Big Island History, Landscapes and Food” features stops at The Painted Church and the Place of Refuge set on the lava fields of Kona’s coast, before a memorable stop at the Royal Kona Coffee Center. Here guests sample java straight from the source. The highlight is lunch at Feeding Leaf, a farm-to-table restaurant serving Japanese-Hawaiian cuisine whose motto is Grown Local, Experience Local.
“The Big Island: A Farm-to-Fork Experience” in Kona visits two farms in the northern part of the Big Island, then follows up those visits with lunch featuring fresh-grown ingredients. The tour takes guests to Parker Ranch, founded more than 160 years ago, as well as a family-owned farm where organic produce is grown for area restaurants. The tour concludes with a three-course lunch at Merriman’s Restaurant, prepared by chefs using products from local farms.
Exotic Tahitian Cuisine Brings a Fusion of Flavors
Two tours in Papeete, Tahiti, showcase the island’s exotic fare: “Papeete Market and Master Chef Lunch at L’O à la Bouche” enables guests to discover the flavors of French Polynesia during a market visit and walking tour with displays of colorful and aromatic pineapples, mangoes, bananas, papayas, guava, ginger, vanilla and coconuts. Guests then indulge in a three-course gourmet lunch at L’O à la Bouche, one of Papeete’s top French restaurants. In this refined and modern space, guests enjoy a gastronomic menu by Chef Jean Charles that blends his masterful French culinary technique with local Tahitian ingredients and flavors.
“The Le Lotus Overwater Dining” tour is an exclusive option for guests on Amsterdam’s Grand World Voyage and 51-Day Tales of the South Pacific cruise that circumnavigates the region in October 2019. Post-twilight, guests experience the artful blending of French culinary techniques and fresh Tahitian flavors during a dining experience at Le Lotus, one of French Polynesia’s premier overwater restaurants. Known for its serene setting suspended over a lagoon, Le Lotus is celebrated for its exquisite presentation of French–Pacific Rim fusion cuisine.
Over the next year, FOOD & WINE shore excursions will be available in an expanding array of destinations including the Caribbean, Mexico, South America, Alaska and additional European ports.
Holland America Line introduced a video to tell the story of the FOOD & WINE shore excursions: https://youtu.be/dz7d9v-kW7g.