Tom Selman who owns, operates and cooks daily at Main Street Bistro in Wailuku.
“Culinary trends change at the drop of the hat, anything can and does affect them, economy, technology, weather, seasonal growth patterns, even who’s been seen eating what.” So, does his menu reflect all this? “Yes, in addition to what feels good to me. Mac & Cheese, Braised Short Ribs, Grilled Romaine Salad with Rock Shrimp. We cook ‘old-school’ style, roasting and curing our own meats – bacon, sausage, brisket, duck breast, pastrami. Sometimes it feels daunting to incorporate all this into our daily routine but somehow we do it.”
I asked Tom if he thought our trends differ from those on the Mainland. “The saying is we’re about six to eight months behind. I’m not sure that’s completely true. I think we strive to be current but also try to intelligently utilize our abundance of great Island ingredients and come up with our own trends. As chefs and restaurateurs, we must always look at what’s happening and then dig into our own experiences to come up with items that are fresh and new and exciting, not just for our customers but also to keep US alive and growing professionally.”
Any predictions for new trends this year? “I think the main will continue to be ‘local’ and also more gastro pub/tapas/small plates. People love the variety of tastes and looks.”