Lilikoi is the Hawaiian word for passionfruit, and locals will confirm that the best version of these fruits come from Hawaii. At once tart and sweet with the delicate crunch of seeds, Chef Ross uses lilikoi from the Hilo side of the island, blending fresh fruit into the cheesecake batter and also turning it into a silky lilikoi curd to top the cake.
Mochi Ice Cream
Chef Ross makes his mochi in-house. Soft and chewy, it's rolled thin and wrapped around a tidy scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. The vanilla beans are grown along the Hamakua coast of the Big Island, and the mochi ice cream is paired with local mangoes, diced and puréed into a sauce.
Kee’au Apple Banana Bread Pudding
This dish is scented with local cinnamon that's grated straight into the pudding, then topped with toffee and vanilla sauces. A generous finish of chantilly and toasted cacao nibs make for one decadent treat.
Big Island Goat Cheesecake
The Ahualoa part of the Big Island is known for excellent goat cheese, and here it's whipped into a savory-sweet cheesecake paired with caramelized pineapples, walnuts, and local honey. It's a cheese course and dessert rolled into one, velvety and complex.
Banana bread is popular in Hawaii and the version is so much loved that people bring home entire loaves to the mainland as omiyage (edibles gifts after you return from a trip). Tons of fresh, mashed bananas keep the loaf plush and moist with a brown and almost nutty crust. It's even better toasted and slathered with butter.