Brown's Beach House
Oceanside dining on the Kohala Coast
The Fairmont Orchid Hawaii
Situated oceanfront at The Fairmont Orchid Hawaii, the AAA Four Diamond award-winning Brown’s Beach House restaurant is arguably one of the dreamiest locations on the Big Island’s Kohala Coast, also known as the Gold Coast for its ultra-luxury resorts and multi-million dollar private homes. Surrounded by massive verdant lawns and swaying coco palms, the open-air restaurant provides a spacious covered dining space that spills out onto the gracious lanai (patio) seating with tables just a few steps away from the blue Pacific. Spectacular sunsets, balmy sea breezes, festive tiki lights, wonderful live music complete the romantic, tropical ambiance.
Executive Chef Hubert Des Marais, who joined the resort last year, oversees the kitchen at Brown’s and has added exciting new items to the menu in recent months. The restaurant’s focus, however, remains true to Hawaii Regional Cuisine and, even more specifically, on Hawaii Island-grown ingredients, Chef Des Marais says.
“The diversity and quality of products here from the aina (land) and kai (ocean) are amazing and we make full use of all of them in our dishes. At Brown’s Beach House, every ingredient is sourced right here on the Big Island and our dishes are inspired by the numerous cultures that have come together to make up the unique demographic that is Hawai‘i,” he says.
In fact, some of those ingredients are sourced very close to home in Chef Des Marais’ very own upcountry garden. An avid lifetime horticulturist, Des Marais cultivates fruits, vegetables, herbs and even edible flowers, most notably various edible orchids. “They’re as delicious as they are beautiful,” he says.
Even with the bounty of product found here, some things simply are not grown here. And that’s why this 35-year plus veteran chef, who had spent nearly two decades re-defining the kitchens and menus of luxury hotels worldwide before settling in at The Fairmont Orchid, will surprise diners from time to time with seasonal specialties from regions around the world—like with the highly coveted, incredibly delicious Italian white truffles.
Most recently, Chef Des Marais unveiled his legacy menu—a tribute to the restaurant’s namesake Francis Hyde I'i Brown. Affectionately known as “Uncle Francis,” this descendant of Hawaiian royalty purchased the 1,359-acre property now known as Mauna Lani Resort in 1932. A Territorial legislator, Brown restored the property and its ancient fishponds and it became his Big Island retreat. “This is where he replenished his Hawaiian soul in the same ways his ancestors did,” according to his nephew Kenneth F. Brown. Those “ways” included farming, taking time to relax and rejuvenate from his world travels, and enjoy traditional Hawaiian ocean sports—surfing, fishing and diving among them. Perhaps most significantly, Brown lived the ancient Hawaiian value of hookipa (hospitality) a hallmark at Brown’s Beach House.
The five-course, prix-fixe legacy menu was introduced in June and features contemporary Hawaii Island cuisine, showcasing tasty offerings from mauka (mountain side) to makai (ocean side). A sampling of current menu highlights (the menu changes seasonally) include fresh Ahi Sashimi, Hawaiian Waialua Cocoa-Dusted Wild Boar Rack, Pulehu Beef Strip Loin and Waialua Chocolate Macadamia Nut Tart. You definitely want to save room for dessert as Chef Des Marais is a bit of a sweet genius and wins awards for his decadent creations.
For an extra special evening with family and friends, book a private dining experience on The Knoll at Brown’s Beach House. Available for groups of up to 30, tables are set nestled along the shore of Pauoa Bay under a canopy of swaying palms and starlit skies!
Brown’s Beach House is located at The Fairmont Orchid Hawaii in Mauna Lani Resort. Dinner is served nightly from 5:30pm to 8:30pm Thursday through Monday and from 5:30pm to 9pm on Tuesday and Wednesday. Call (808) 887-7368 for reservations and for more details on private dining on The Knoll.