Tasting Kauai
Tasting Kauai
4.5
Bar, Club & Pub ToursBeer Tastings & ToursPrivate ToursFood ToursWine Tours & Tastings
About
Tasting Kauai invites residents and visitors on a culinary romp through paradise. Learn how to buy local through educational and fun events while connecting with Kauai’s culture, aloha, people and land.
Lihue, Hawaii
Tours and Tickets by Tasting Kauai

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles260 reviews
Excellent
209
Very good
29
Average
9
Poor
5
Terrible
8

flowerdrumsong
Calgary, Canada621 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2015 • Couples
Whenever we visit a new place, we like to check out the local cuisine and what best way to go than a taste of what the island of Kauai can offer us.

Michelle was our bubbly, energetic, and very knowledgable tour guide. Friendly and caring, she was able to connect us with the people who try to give Kauai the best local, organic, farm-to-table stories and the small players who work very hard and stay true to their passions and eventually provide us with their pride and joy - food, traditional medicines, and snacks that are meant to make you full and whole.

We started off with Doug and Jenna who offered us a sampling of what organic ingredients can do to your body. Their teas are all grown organically in Kauai and have some medicinal stuff that you can use that was created from their plant varieties. The second spot was in the General Store which, if not for this tour, we would have otherwise passed by because of its inconspicuous ness. It looked very unassuming but if you like pizza that was cooked from a brick oven in the north shore then do stop by. Bonus: they make pizza with gluten free dough. Yay!

The third spot was in a tiki place in Princeville. Love the stories shared with the manager, Susan. However, equally delicious is their food and Mai tai. Had my gluten free ahi fish & chips too! The next stop was a quick hi and hello to the man who owns a dehydrator that is now making waves in the local and organic circuit and hands down, the best dried fruit in the island.

Next on the agenda was to sample native cuisine and we were treated to a good food called lau lau. The food that we got was more than enough so we brought one of the dishes home and I experimented with that food by adding our own (Filipino) twist to it by adding sautéed onion and garlic with coconut milk and chillies and what came about was our version of Laing.

Dessert was from another food truck whose owner is a young chef who is passionate about her trade. She made gluten free waffles for us with macadamia nut ice cream and caramel sauce. Divine!

Finally, we wrapped up our visit in the Waipa Farmers market where we enjoyed some freshly picked fruits and freshly made goat cheese and we brought home a liliquoy butter.

Was it worth it? Absolutely! Remember, you go to this tours with an end goal of understanding the food culture of the island. You don't just add up the price you pay for the food - it's a tasting tour for crying out loud. It is an experience to hear and meet and understand how entrepreneurs manage their businesses - and it's a chance to have a glimpse of how locals really live and it's a nod to eating organically, locally, and healthily.

Thank you, Michelle for your enthusiasm. We learned more about the island through the actual locals whom you connected us with. It was truly priceless!
Written July 7, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Sewingzme
Pueblo, Colorado21 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2015 • Couples
My husband and I did all 3 of the tours. They were all worth every penny! I suggest taking all the tours, but if you are staying on island in some place you can cook, do the Farmers Market Tour the first week you are there. You will know what to cook and where to get the best ingredients after taking the Farmers Market Tour. All 3 tours have something different to offer and you learn the best places to eat without experimenting on your own. Marta, Dan, and Michelle have taken all the guess work out of eating on Kauai!
Written March 19, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Tammi S
60 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2014 • Solo
I live & work in Honolulu, and exploring the outer islands has been part of my work for the last 9 years. Each of the outer islands - Kauai, Maui, Big Island, Lanai, Molokai - has a different vibe and should be experienced. If you've only ever been to Honolulu, then you really haven't visited Hawaii! This past week I headed over to Kauai for 2 days of work & play, and I got to see the South Shore of Kauai in a new way, through the Tasting Kauai food tour! Our guide, Michelle, was informative & helpful & had great insider tips for what to eat & where. The tour included tastes of freshly hand-rolled sushi at Makai Sushi, fish tacos from a local-favorite "dive" Da Crack, samples of freshly made gelato at Papalani Gelato, and market day at The Shops at Kukui'ula, including Kobe Beef sliders from Living Foods Market, freshly made croissants from Haole Girl Island Sweets, local honey tasting, jam tasting from Monkeypod Jam and the finale at Merriman's Kauai, where we sampled freshly squeezed local orange juice and pork belly with greens and pumpkin. At every stop, the chefs talked with the group about their passion for their craft and specialty. The tour was informative and fun and worth every penny & minute of the tour.
Written November 3, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Clifford B
Bangkok, Thailand14 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2018 • Couples
If you are really into food and want to find the hidden gems, Tasting Kauai is the place to go. We made 6 stops and all were great from baked goods, juice, saimin, Japanese American fusion, poke, and fine dinning appetizers and deserts were all tasted. You will not be hungry after the tour.
Written June 3, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Aloha Clifford B! :-) Thank you so much. See us again soon :-)
Written September 14, 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

rflowers4
Ventura14 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2018
We visit Kauai every year. Last year we took the south shore food tour and enjoyed it very much. The quality and variety of the of the food was very good-one item was so good I couldn't wait to get back here to have it again! So I was very much looking forward to the north shore tour this year-I was greatly disappointed. I can only describe the food on this tour as junk food. It included pizza, fried chicken, one macaroon, a small slice of banana bread and some dried fruit. The guy who makes the dried fruit is very entertaining but since there was very little fruit available at this time of year the only thing he had was pineapple and coconut candy-more junk food. The poi and the kalua pork on the first stop was at least a historically hawaiin dish. I did not go to the last stop because I had an upset stomach by then- I heard it was an alcoholic beverage and more finger food-probably fried. When I wrote to complain to the owners about our experience I was told that I had not paid attention and if I had I would have known that all ingredients used were locally sourced and that is what they base their choices on-really??-locally sourced pizza dough? He also informed me that that is what "they" eat here. (He was rather rude and defensive). I would think that there are many choices of locally sourced ingredients without having to eat junk food. I have had some lovely food around the island and shopped in the local farmer's markets so I know they could do better. If you are expecting any high end tastings the north shore tour should be skipped. If you enjoy junk food, this is the one to try-but it's a lot of money for poor quality.
Written March 12, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Aloha rflowers4 - Thank you so much for joining us on our food tours! We're glad you enjoyed the south side and super sad that you felt like our North Shore tour wasn't up to par. I'm Dr. Addison, and I recently acquired Tasting Kauai. We are in the process of improving all of our tours and adding more tours around our island. Our mission is to provide educational tours that help our visitors learn about the amazing local food that is unique to our culture AND help support local businesses who are trying to source locally to help fight our food challenges here on the island. I know this may not be your intention, but you are helping the residents of Kauai move away from it's dependency on imported food (currently 95% of food is imported into Kauai.) With that said, we'd be happy to extend a discount for a new tour if you decide to join us again - we are launch 3 new tours starting in 2019 that I am completely excited for. Thanks again for your review, see you on Kauai soon!
Written September 19, 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Cassiano A
2 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2016
Overpriced for almost no food at all.
Dear Martha, I am very sorry but your food tour was a joke.
Did not learn anything, plus, taking the group for chicken wings ??? And last stop, tea ??? Wasn't it a Food tour ??? Seriously ???
What's up with the price, are you out of your mind ??? I paid what I paid expecting a great tour, your tour is only worth half of the price you charge.
Written December 7, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

ArmenInSeattle
Redmond, WA59 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2018 • Couples
It appears that I'm the first to review the west side tasting tour, which is the latest in the Tasting Kauai lineup. This is the only walking tour - it seems the others around the island involve jumping into your own cars to caravan to different locations. I liked the walking aspect, not only for the exercise, but also to talk and connect with our guide Katherine and the other visitors.

For our tour, we visited 5 food vendors around Hanapepe town, including a bakery, Japanese restaurant, coffee shop, a salt and seasonings shop, and a frozen dessert vendor (plus an extra bonus stop for a cookie). At each stop we met the owner or chef and learned a bit about their story. Katherine was very friendly and informative, and explained some Kauai and Hanapepe history. We've visited Kauai many times over the years, but I still learned some new things.

I was expecting small tastes, but I was surprised at the generous serving sizes. I was definitely full after the tour - it was like a multi-course meal over a few hours.

The west side tour is on Friday afternoon and ends right when Hanapepe Art Night is just getting started, so it's a nice way to do both on the same evening.

For those who think the price is too high, there are few things to consider. The shops are locally-owned, so you're supporting small businesses on Kauai.
The food is high-quality and uses as many local ingredients as possible, which is important for sustainability on the island as most food is imported. And a portion of their profits goes to local Kauai food banks. Overall I thought the food, education and spreading some aloha was worth it.
Written December 16, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
You rock! What a review :) Thank you so much for sharing your experience and really share the wholeness of the tour! I definitely think this will help people learn more about the tours and truly enjoy their stay on Kauai! You absolutely rock - let's stay in touch! I hope you can join us on a few more tours.
Written January 24, 2019
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Rob R
Kamloops, Canada22 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2017 • Couples
My wife and I took the South Shore Kauai tour with Katherine on our first full day in Kauai. Katherine was a great guide, very knowledgeable and informative, and we discovered a number of great local places to eat that we would not have normally stopped at if we were just driving around on our own. The biggest taste treat surprises for us was a couple of the food trucks Katherine took our group to. We went back the next day to one of them for a full lunch instead of just a taste of their wares. If you like food and exploring the unexpected, give Tasting Kauai a try!
Written December 23, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Aloha Rob R! It's nice that you had a great time with the South Shore food tour :-) On your next visit try the other side of the tour too for more food exploring :-) MAHALO!
Written September 25, 2018
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

MVHRollingHills
Moscow, ID4 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2017 • Couples
This tour was not what I was hoping for. I chose a tour, North Shore Tour, where we specifically did not eat sushi (not my fav) and not only did we make an entire stop for sushi, at the last minute, but we also didn't get the grass fed beef stop that I was looking forward to. I suppose the menu and stops change. The hosts are definitely comfortable with all guests but I wanted to hear less about their Colorado rafting adventures and more about Kauai. This tour has lots of 5 star reviews and it's quite possible that I'm not a good fit, or maybe we just hit an off day.
Written January 27, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

auntkaci
Texas11 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2015 • Couples
Really a 3.5 in rating.....

This was a hard review to write because I set pretty high standards for this tour. It was the one I was most excited out, and if the tour guide Michelle, wasn't as great as she was, it would have been even more of a let down.

Michelle & the food stop owners: 5 stars

The food & actual stops on the tour: 3 stars

If you are familiar with yelp at all, there is a 95% chance that you have already discovered the stops that they take you to on the North Shore Tour. 3 out of the 4 stops we visited (there is a farmers' market at the end makes 5 stops), I had already bookmarked as places of interest. These aren't going to really be "hidden gems". Maybe we can blame Yelp for that... in the sense that if one yelper knows about it, they are going to tell 10+ others - so nothing is truly hidden anymore. There isn't a cooking demonstration like on the South Shore tour. Although they added the North Shore after the South, I would have hoped for more of the same quality.

Had this tour cost $85, then I wouldn't have felt cheapen. But for $125 and having to use our own vehicle and 1/3rd portions, it was hard to swallow. I added up the actual cost of the food and it comes to $35 (and that is being conservative on my end).
Fancy Tea - $6
Mai Tai - $11 (and I got a virgin, so it would have been less than that)
Ribs (2) - $4
burger (1/4) - $2.50
pizza (1/16) - $2.50
LauLau - $5
Half ice cream waffle - $4

So yes, it may sound like I am being a nit-picker. Just know, that if you go on the North Shore tour (assuming they don't change the stops) you are paying for a sort-of-VIP experience, not unforgettable-blow-you-mind food.

All that negative stuff being said, Michelle and the food stop owners really do make the tour worth it. Michelle is very knowledge of Kauai and its' owners. The owners of the restaurants/food trucks all came out to visit with us and tell us alittle about themselves and their business. All were very "green-conscious", trying to keep their products as organic & local as possible.
It ends with a trip to the farmers' market in Waipa. Which was nice, because Michelle took us around to a few of the stalls and we tried some samples (which isn't to say that they don't give samples out to everyone anyways).
Written May 12, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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