MAUI HIBACHI, COVID STYLE

MAUI HIBACHI, COVID STYLE!

The Hibachi restaurant in Lahaina, Maui is dining at its finest! Home of “Mo’ Butter Mo’ Better.” 

Shhh… it is the secret ingredient.

Stranger Danger

When you dine at a Hibachi restaurant, the host smushes you into a table that seats upwards of twelve people. Did I mention this is indoor dining only?

Back in the day before COVID, you would always have to share a hibachi table with peeps called strangers.

I barely remember those pre-COVID days, but if my mind serves me correctly, we would just sit down, and simply ‘grin and bear it.’

In those days, my greatest fear was the stranger who sat next to me who was either too loud, too drunk, elbowed me too much, spat food when they spoke, had not so subtle fahrt slippage, or all of the above. 

Kinda kills the ambiance of fine dining. Don’t ya think?

At a minimum, if I knew the person sitting next to me, I could make a big stink and complain. 

By the way, I wonder…can you get COVID through a fahrt?

On second thought, perhaps this was not the best dining choice during COVID.

Whatever. The salted butter sprinkled with salt and a side of grilled shrimp is to die for girlfriends!

Love Thy Table-Neighbor

I know, you are thinking, ‘she is such a biatch!’ Excuse me sistah! Oh my, what short memories you have. Perhaps even worse than mine!

There is COVID in Hawaii. And even though there may not be COVID in Florida, Arizona or Texas, I do not need to be literally sittin’ on top of a stranger. Then again, if my table neighbor is gorgeous and super-hot…there is always an exception to every rule! Shhhh. don’t tell my husband.

COVID Dining

The big question of the evening: Would we be lucky and get a table alone, or would we have to dine with strangers? 

No more guessin’! We were escorted to the table, which was empty. Hallelujah! Alone at last! 

And then… came the other family.

Oy. A million meshuga (Yiddish for crazy) thoughts were racing through my rather unstable mind. This family could be from Mars for all I knew. Actually, I could deal with a family from Mars. Mars instituted mandatory COVID vaccinations.

A family from Mississippi Arizona, South Dakota, not sure. Red States, conspiracy theories, vax chips implanted in your body…yada yada yada.

But really. Humor me. Just imagine, we actually had to share a table with strangers! We have never, ever done that during COVID! Shiat!

My word! What was a girl to do? Where could I run? The good news was that the restaurant stuck us with only one family.

Phew, what a relief. I suppose due to COVID, we did not get a third family literally thrown in our laps!

As it was, we were literally sitting on top of each other. No joke. However, I had to laugh because I believed the air I was breathing was laden with COVID spikes, and they were infiltrating every orifice of my body.

Rather than totally lose my mind, I needed to put my thinkin’ cap on. What would my Spiritual Advisor Dr. Fauci tell me to do?

Like duh! He would have told me not eat indoors at a restaurant. Hmmm. He sounds like my ‘ole big mama! 

If he only knew the COVID mess I got myself into. Where was the social distancing? Where was my mask?

And then, I did what any COVID paranoid lunatic would do: I moved my chair and table setting to the very end of the table. My plate was hanging off the table. A useless effort to maintain a teeny-tiny bit of air space between myself and the stranger next door.

Rest assured it would have been easier to just sit away from the table facing the corner.

I was plotzing. FYI, Yiddish word for ‘collapsing or fainting.’ The translation: Sistahs, I thought I was gonna die! It was over; yep, right there in the hibachi restaurant. Sayonara folks.

Why the worry? First of all, no one wore a mask at the table. Why should we? We had to show our I.D. and vaccine card.

But wait. This is COVID. Where is this family from? Mississippi? Did they really get vaccinated? Was their VAX Card legal? How can I find out this information?

Vetting Process

You know it sistahs! I looked over this family with a keen eye. Oh please. I was in stealth mode. I was not blatant. You know me… I am the most subtle person ever! Just like a bull in a China shop! But I had to be careful. If they were from Texas, were they packin’ a pistol? I just did not know.

The Chef

At a Hibachi restaurant, it is the luck of the draw who is your Chef.

And we scored big.

The Chef, who happens to be a part-time comedian and part-time knife magician, finally came on stage to his grill.

He brought the hibachi ingredients: about five pounds of salted butter and three pounds of salt. Grilled salted butter with a dash of shrimp, steak, chicken, and vegetables was the cuisine for the evening.

Knives Out

The Chef entertained us with a show of flippin’ and spinnin’ sharp knives. One false move, and adios to your table neighbor. At least that would have created more space at the table.

Mo’ Butter is Mo’ Better!

What can I say, I love hibachi! I love grilled butter sautéed with salt, and a hint of shrimp, steak, lobster or chicken. I loved grilled butter with a side of garlic and a hint of fried rice.

The dinner was great, as always. I suppose due to COVID, the Chef did not throw shrimp at us to catch with our mouths. Too bad. I loved watching someone get shrimp thrown in their eye!

Oh well, maybe next year.

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