Shaved Ice Is a Unique Maui Treat

When President Obama visits his home state of Hawaii, he takes advantage of the opportunity to indulge in his favorite treat — shaved ice. The president’s favorite flavor is a refreshing trio of cherry, lemon-lime and orange-guava which has catapulted in popularity as tourists clamor to share the President’s love for this unique Hawaiian treat.

Hawaiian shaved ice is unlike anything you’ve ever eaten. Shaved ice is nothing like the snow cones served at state and county fairs on the mainland. Snow cones are mounds of hard, crunchy ice over which vendors pour sweet-flavored syrups that quickly filter through the ice to pool at the bottom of the paper cone where you can only get at them with a straw. Compared to snow cones, real Hawaiian shaved ice is ambrosia.

Shaved ice begins as a solid block of ice that is inserted into a machine that shakes and spins to the accompaniment of a deafening rattle as razor-sharp blades shave fine, soft flakes of ice from the block, depositing them in a snowy mound. The “shave” is gently packed into a cup over which your choice of fruit syrups is poured. But instead of pooling at the bottom of the cup, the syrup is absorbed by the ice flakes so that every bite is saturated with flavor. It’s delicious, fantastically refreshing, available in an endless variety of flavor combinations and an absolute “must try” during your next Maui vacation.

Maui’s best shaved ice stands are:

  1. Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice in Lahaina, Kihei and Kahului.
  2. Breakwall Shave Ice Co. in Lahaina
  3. Local Boys Shave Ice in Lahaina and Kihei.

When you stay at one of’s beautiful Maui vacation rentals, you’re never far from a great shaved ice stand which means you’ll have plenty of opportunities to create your own signature flavor combination. Happy slurping!