UHMC Culinary Arts Program: A Lei’s Family Class Act November 15, 2016

Cooking Classes, not surf lessons on Maui

Have you thought of taking cooking classes? Ever wonder what that’s like? One of my repeat guests has gone to cooking school and actually wrote a book on the subject. I loved it! Let’s just say it sounds a lot harder than I thought it would be. Heck, it even sounded worse than being yelled at by Gordon Ramsay from Hell’s Kitchen! Wow.

Did you know Maui has its very own culinary academy? You have probably tried the food of many of its graduates as many move on to cook at some of the many restaurants on our island. Did you know that students of the UHMC Culinary Arts Program prepare all the food for the UH Maui dining hall on campus? Did you know that the dining hall is open to the public? It is! And they have a good reputation for serving great food!

Lei’s Class Act Restaurant at the UHMC Culinary Arts Program


One of the many great programs at the UH Maui campus is their culinary academy. Part of the academy’s program is their Lei’s Family Class Act Restaurant, located on the second floor of the dining hall building. This restaurant has won people’s choice awards from Open Table for the past three years. When you go, you’ll know why!

By the students, for the people

This is a fine dining restaurant run entirely by students. Be prepared to be patient and please be kind. These are students training to be chefs and they are also the ones serving. If you get impatient easily while dinning out, this may not be the restaurant for you. If you want to help out the next generation of great Maui chefs and want a sneak peak at upcoming culinary techniques, then this may be your thing.img_3021

They are open for lunch twice a week – Wednesdays and Fridays from 11:00-12:30pm. Reservations are a MUST. They typically serve a four course prix fixe menu – prices determined by the entrée selected and range from $30-$42/person. It is BYOB with a $5 bottle corkage fee. The menu varies per week as students learn new dishes. It isn’t a fancy website, but you can see more information on their menu here. And since they follow the school year, they are closed when school is not in session. You may pay your meal by credit card, however gratuities are cash-only.

Our lunch last week was fantastic! The food was great, we had great service – though you could tell they were a little nervous (it was their second shift on serving rotation). The ambiance is really nice and you have a view of Kahului Harbor.

We gave our experience “Two Thumbs Up” and think you’ll enjoy as well.