FUUD: Pahu i’a at Hualalai

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The other week we were on the Big Island visiting family — and decided to stop off at a resort I had only heard about.

Four Seasons Resort Hualalai at Historic Ka’upulehu is not exactly in my price range. Standard rooms that face the golf course — I mean, it is a nice golf course — start at $795 per night, with rates exceeding $10,000 a night for luxurious villas with all the comforts of a beach house but swankier. (These villas typically come with complimentary massage treatments, valet service and other extras.)

But that didn’t stop us from eating there!

The Four Seasons boasts accessible award-winning dining, including its signature restaurant, Pahu i’a.

Pahu i’a, in Hawaiian, means aquarium — which, to this day, still doesn’t make sense to me. Am I sitting in an aquarium? Does this restaurant only serve fish and plankton? It was baffling.

But what I did get was this concept — an impressive 90 percent of the menu here is made with local ingredients. All from the Big Island. Now that’s something I can get my head around!

We opted to eat upstairs at the Lava Lounge to enjoy the live music and watch the sunset.

Here’s what our dinner looked like:

Pahu i'a

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This award-winning restaurant is located oceanside, between the King's Pond and Sea Shell Crescents — which are really little neighborhoods on the property. No building here is more than two stories tall, so you don't feel like you're in a resort.

Pahu i’a, Four Seasons Resort Hualalai at Historic Ka’upulehu, 72-100 Kaupulehu Dr. in Kailua-Kona. Hours: Breakfast, 6:30-11 a.m. daily; dinner, 6-9 p.m. Sunday through Friday; outdoor barbecue, 5:30-8:30 p.m. Saturday. Phone: 808) 325-8000