The delicate, elegant macarons (not to be confused with the dense, intense macaroon) at Fabiani’s in Kihei have become a secret addiction of mine over the past month.
Especially the one on the left.
I’ve stopped in at least once a week for a $1.75 treat. I know: nearly $2 for a cookie this small? These petite marvels (they measure maybe two inches across) are deceptively simple, but they’re worth the extra change: they bring out the ravenous wolf that prowls inside me, waiting for game worth the effort of pursuit.
Each cookie involves two meringues, made with egg whites and ground almonds and a little sugar, sandwiched around an intensely flavored cream ganache filling. When I sink my fangs into the salted caramel on the left, my wolf wakes and feeds. One cookie more than sates, and sometimes I even share it with James.
The pistachio, on the right, is less thrilling to my taste, but an excellent version of this rather-hard-to-do-well pastry. I sampled dozens of macarons in patisseries all over Paris a couple of years ago, and none were better than what we have, right here, now, in Fabiani’s in Kihei.
That salted caramel macaron is worth the trip alone.
For an excellent description of what makes a great macaron — and a brief history of the cookie, please read this post on Serious Eats, which is where the image on the top right comes from. It’s perfect!
Breads and bagels fare less well in the bakery, but the other pastries can be very nice, too. I love the $6 red velvet cake with a really nice cream cheese filling. It’s a four inch cake, but it comes in its own chocolate shell. The Bavarian cream in the crumbcake was perfect, and the cookies, like the snickerdoodle below, are tasty (but suffer from the humidity if left out too long– things go stale quickly on Maui).
Fabiani’s tends to be packed — their value quotient is high and their pizza is coming around to be as good as the now-closed Matteo’s was when they first opened (same owners). With a full bar and a menu that pleases kids and adults, it’s well worth your stop.
Oh, did I mention the salted caramel macaron? You can get a couple — one for later.
Fabiani’s is located at 95 Lipoa Street, Kihei, Maui, and can be reached at 808-874-1234
Not every restaurant on Maui measures up: to find out where Molly and James Jacobson would eat if they didn’t have to write the book, read Top Maui Restaurants.