Star-Bulletin Features


Participants in the Visitor Industry Charity Walk are always well-fed, no doubt to give them the strength to trek those seven miles.
Walkers last year picked up kalua pork sandwiches at the Hawaii Prince Hotel checkpoint.

Walking, and snacking, for charity

If you look at a walk-a-thon as part of a fitness program, the Visitor Industry Charity Walk planned for May 18 might not be for you.

The seven-mile trek through Waikiki is broken up by 18 checkpoints, which are really stop-and-eat points offering brownies, chocolate-chip cookies, popcorn and other diet-busting delicacies.

Of course, you could skip all the temptations and partake of the games and entertainment also offered at the checkpoints. Or, if you insist on exercise, run those seven miles.

It's all for a good cause. The Hawaii Hotel Association's Charity Walk takes place simultaneously on Oahu, Maui, Kauai and the Big Island. Proceeds collected in pledges by walkers go to several local charities.

The walk will begin at Ala Moana Beach Park's McCoy Pavilion at 6 a.m., continue through Waikiki, Kapiolani Park and along the Ala Wai Canal, ending back at McCoy Pavilion, where plate lunches will be served and a post-walk concert will be held.

Last year, more than 12,700 walkers participated statewide, raising $812,000 for more than 175 local charities. Since the first walk 1978, the event has raised more than $13 million.

For applications, visit or call 923-0407. Oahu charities interested in receiving money from the Charity Walk must apply by May 31.




The Island Essence tea collection sells for about $13 per 3-ounce gift tin.

Beard award eludes 2 locals

Greg Higgins of Higgins Restaurant in Portland, Ore., has been named winner of the "James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef of the Northwest/Hawaii."

The awards were handed out Monday in New York. Two Hawaii chefs, George Mavrothalassitis of Chef Mavro on Oahu and Edwin Goto of the Maunalani Bay Hotel and Bungalows on the Big Island, were among the five nominees.

No Hawaii chef has won the prestigious culinary award since Alan Wong in 1995.

The "Outstanding Chef Award" went to Lidia Mattichio Bastianich of Felidia Ristorante in New York, only the second woman to claim the honor (the first was Alice Waters in 1992). Sherry Yard of Spago Beverly Hills, was named "Outstanding Pastry Chef."

The James Beard Foundation also recognizes outstanding cookbooks, with the top award going to "Bread Baker's Apprentice: Mastering the Art of Extraordinary Bread," by Peter Reinhart and published by Ten Speed Press.

More than 500 industry professionals vote in the nomination and awards process.

Learn to cook at KCC

Tired of your job? Looking for a change? Have a fondness for working near hot stoves in white clothing?

Be a chef. Kapiolani Community College is making it easier, adding two summer sessions to accommodate more aspiring food industry professionals.

The next program begins May 20, and the school expects it will appeal to "nontraditional" students, meaning not those fresh out of high school (the session starts too early for them), but rather older individuals seeking a return to school or a change of career.

"If you ever thought of getting a culinary degree, this is a good time," chef/instructor Kelvin Ro says. "We have a lot of slots."

The two new programs make it easier for existing students to complete their course requirements; as the school has grown, demand has sometimes outpaced the supply of classes.

A culinary degree is normally earned in two years. Students begin with cooking fundamentals (how to wield a knife, etc.), then progress to the lab classes, which involve staffing the school's restaurants.

For class schedules visit the Web site,, or call 734-9466.

Take tea to Mom

Here's a fragrant gift for Mother's Day: teas made with locally grown herbs, fruits and flowers.

The Island Essence collection offers the flavors of roses and champagne, passion fruit, lavender-lemongrass, jasmine-mamaki, ohelo, mango and strawberry guava.

A Hawaiian Vanilla flavor is a future possibility; it was taste-tested at two recent benefits last week: the Hawaiian Island Chefs Lei Day Luau and the Leeward Community College Taste of the Stars.

The teas are available at Compleat Kitchen, Executive Chef at the Tea Chest, or online at

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