Hawaii is famous for the Hawaii Regional Cuisine started by 12 of the best Hawaii chefs in 1991. It is a culinary exercise that blends the world’s cuisine with Hawaii’s varied, ethnic flavors. The hallmark of the Hawaii Regional Cuisine is the use of the most natural farm-bred ingredients. These include vegetables and fruits obtained through volcanic soil and cattle reared on the upland pastures. The region of Waimea features upcountry pasturelands where grass-fed lamb and beef are grown.
Some of the restaurants on Hawaii island that exemplify Hawaii Regional Cuisine are Waimea’s Merriman’s Restaurant owned by Peter Merriman and Roy’s Bar & Grill on the Kohala Coast owned by Roy Yamaguchi. Merriman and Yamaguchi are two of the celebrated chefs who have played a stellar role in the Hawaiian Regional Cuisine movement. Honolulu Magazine has rated Merriman’s restaurant the best for 13 years consecutively while Yamaguchi-based in Oahu has been conferred the James Beard Award.