07.23Cornish Game Hen Recipe | Four Seasons Hualalai | Easy Recipes

Cornish Game Hen | Four Seasons Hualalai | Easy Recipes Blog

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Leave it to Four Seasons Hualalai in Hawaii to create this delicious Cornish Game Hen Recipe. What could be better for a quick dinner recipe than a jazzy entree with an Asian twist?  Market fresh peas and pea tendrils are the perfect answer for great presentation. The best part? This easy recipe  can be prepared the night before.

Many thanks to Chef Ricardo at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai’s new Asian themed U’LU Restaurant on the Big Island of Hawaii for sharing this delicious recipe.

While we can’t duplicate the sandy beach and sunset on the Pacific Ocean that guests enjoy, we can dream about our return to Hawaii over a candlelight dinner savoring this Asian Cornish Game Hen romantic dinner recipe.



1 cornish game hen
1 cup low sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup sake
2 ounces sugar
1 ounce sesame oil
2 ounces dark soy


Place all ingredients, except the game hen, in a small sauce pot.

Bring to a boil and turn off the heat.

Place the sauce pan in the refrigerator to cool.

Once liquid is cold,  combine half of the soy mixture  with the
game hen.

Marinate for a minimum of 6 hours. 24 hours is best, so easiest to make up the night before.

Reserve the rest of soy mixture for later use. After marinating, roast in a 345 degree oven for 40 minutes or until bird reaches an internal temperature of 155 degrees.

Once cooked, cut  game hen in 1/2 and serve with pea tendrils.

Drizzle leftover soy sake mixture over hen.


– The Gourmet Review

06.04Helicopter Experience Extraordinaire | The Four Seasons Hualalai

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Leave it to Four Seasons Resort Hualalai to outdo itself. Honestly, this was one of the most extraordinary experiences of my life.  My family was included in  the initial test run for one of the greatest Hawaiian adventures ever!

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We were picked up at the hotel and driven to Paradise Helicopters, just a  short jaunt from the hotel. I must admit, I’ve always been a bit nervous about taking a helicopter ride, but this concern was quickly eliminated. Our pilot, Danny, was an ex Marine pilot, who also just happened to be the ultimate tour guide. As we flew over the Big Island of Hawaii, we learned that ll of the 13 world climate zones are on the Big Island. Imagine!

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We viewed the most active volcano in the world, along with endless black lava fields.

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We watched, in awe, as billowing steam rose as lava met the Pacific Ocean at 2500 degrees Fahrenheit. The Big Island  in Hawaii is the only island with active volcanoes and there are five of them. We were actually close enough to smell the sulfur.

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Next, we flew over the rainiest city in the US. The small town of Hilo averages 360 inches of rain a year. That’s 5 to 6 times the amount of rain you find in Seattle! The lush green foliage and forests attest to this, where the canopy of green tree tops are every bit as beautiful as the magnificent ocean coastline.  (Read the rest of this entry…)

02.03Shrimp and Papaya Salad Recipe | Four Seasons Resort Hualalai

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Count on the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai  to create fabulous, healthy salads using seasonal fresh ingredients. This is one of my favorites right now at Beach Tree Restaurant.



9 each shrimp halves (cut in half lengthwise, steamed for 3 minutes and cooled)

3 each orange segments

3 each papaya wedges

7 each baby romaine leaves

1 oz celery (needs to be peeled and cut thinly on a bias)

2 oz shaved fennel

1/4 oz fennel fronds

1 oz. Citrus Vinaigrette


2 cups extra virgin olive oil

3/4 cup fresh lemon juice

1/4 cup fresh orange juice

Salt & Pepper to taste


Toss all ingredients together with citrus vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper.

Combine all ingredients together. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Enjoy this secret restaurant recipe!

– The Gourmet Review

10.16Four Season’s Tequila Cocktail Recipe | Hawaii’s Resort Hualalai

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Leave it to the Four Season’s Resort Hualalai to come up with a twist on the traditional tequila cocktail.  If you are a tequila connoisseur, then you will love pairing David Ravandi’s 1 2 3 line of certified organic tequilas with cucumber, fresh juices and just a slice of jalapeno for that extra kick. This cocktail, named the “Paniolo” by Doug Shulman, one of Four Season’s creative bartenders, uses Dos (2) Reposado. Try it!



1.5 ounces (you can substitute silver tequila)

2 slices cucumber

1 jalapeno sliver

.5 oz lime juice

2 oz mango juice

.5 oz agave nectar


In a mixing glass, muddle cucumber and jalapeno with lime juice and agave nectar.

Add tequila and mango juice to glass with ice.

Shake and pour into a chili rimmed glass (1/2 of glass).

Garnish with sliced cucumber per photo and slice of jalapeño.


Enjoy some of Doug’s other popular cocktails recipes, such as his Mañana tequila cocktail or the Hualalai Collins cocktail.

– The Gourmet Review

06.12Mango Mai Tai Recipe | Four Seasons Hualalai

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The Mango Mai Tai is my favorite mai tai drink, especially as the sun sets at the Beach Tree Bar at Four Seasons Hualalai. The Mango Mai Tai is  simple to make and slightly less lethal than a regular mai tai, but I dare you to stop after just one. I asked Frank, the bartender ,who introduced me to this magnificent creation,  about it’s origins. First, the recipe.



1.5 oz        (1 shot)           Cruzan Mango rum

1.5    oz     (1 shot)           pog juice* (you can substitute any commercial pot)

Four Seasons Resort Hualalai uses Pass-O-Guava, aka pog juice, but you can find pog sold in most grocery stores.


Combine ingredients and pour over ice. Garnish with pineapple.



The story behind the Mango Mai Tai is a humble one.  Hualalai’s assistant room’s division manager, Lanikai Lindsey, was in search of a new tropical cocktail amenity to welcome our tired guests to the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai that had a little taste of “Aloha”.  Lanikai needed the drink to be both tasty and refreshing, but simple enough for the front desk to make.


I love this type of challenge. It gets my creative juices flowing (sorry about the pun). I recommend using a shot of Cruzan mango rum (1.5 oz.) and Pass-O-Guava juice aka POG juice.  POG is the juice every keiki in Hawaii grows up drinking. It’s as “Hawaiian” as it gets. The Cruzan mango rum is for the “kick”. I once served this cocktail at a banquet function at the resort, and it got rave reviews from all the guests. The POG juice comes pre-made by the gallon. We add Cruzan mango rum. Simple.  That’s why I gave Lanikai that recipe and then didn’t give the drink a second thought.

Shortly thereafter, guests started sending back the regular Mai Tai we make at Beach Tree.  They wanted the “Mango Mai  Tai” they got at check in. All the bartenders were confused. What “Mango Mai Tai?” You see, I never actually named the drink.  Lanikai must have come up with the name Mango Mai Tai. It took the bartenders awhile to figure out what was going on. What was going on was my humble drink was a hit!”

-Frank Weiser


Frank Weiser has been a bartender at the Beach Tree Bar, since the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai opened on the Big Island in 1996. He’s a great guy and makes everyone feel welcome, as guests gather for nightly sunset on the beach.

– The Gourmet Review

02.13“Inside the Kitchen” | Four Seasons Hualalai | Farm To Table

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The Four Season’s “Farm To Table” nine course tasting meal was over the top. What an evening! Instead of dining  oceanside at  the fabulous Pahu i’a restaurant, Executive Chef James “Jim” Babian surprised with a two person chef’s table “Inside the Kitchen.”

Chef Jim is serious about using local products. Check out the menu below. It was inspired by Chef’s visit to the farmer’s market earlier in the day and supplemented with a few calls to local vendors for delivery that afternoon. Over 160 local ingredients are utilized on the menus at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai. The menu was extravagant. Check it out!

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Kumumoto Oyster Duo

Foie gras-teri & Kalamansi, shiso, olive oil, black salt

Henriot, Brut Rosé

The oysters are from the Natural Energy Lab. Chef wanted a stark contrast, so

the  first oyster was topped with a small piece of seared Foie Gras and teriyaki

ginger jus. The second was tart, with locally raised Kalamansi lime, fresh

micro shiso and a touch of black lava salt. 

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Tea Smoked Kona Shrimp

Uni cream

Domaine Barat Chablis 2009

 The shrimp were harvested that morning. Chef Jim and Shaun lighty smoked them in a

wok with tea leaves, Maui brown sugar and star anise, gave them a quick sear

and finished them with an ala minute uni sake cream emulsion. They also

fried the heads to a nice crispy texture and served them with a simple lemon wedge.

Fresh fried shrimp heads .   .   . “yummy.”   – Chef Jim

(Ahhhh, Chef, this is an acquired taste for most of us.)

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Spicy Ahi “Thai Style Crudo

Mizuna, Kamuela cucumber, radish, micro basil

Selbach-Oster Riesling 2009

The #1 Ahi that came in that day from the Honolulu auction block was lightly 

chilies and then layer over Waimea raised Mizuna, watermelon radish, Kamuela

cucumbers and basil from the hotel garden.

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Roasted Waimea Beets and Pineapple

Goat feta, pineapple balsamic reduction

Red Shoulder Ranch Chardonnay 2009   

Chef’s preference is to eat fruit separately or as dessert, rather than mixed into salads.

“I guess I’m a purist when it comes to flavor and parings  and find one usually

overpowers the other. In this case, I went on a limb and asked Chef Shaun what

he thought about paring roasted pineapple (it mellows the tartness) with local beets and

pulls them together with Puna goat cheese.  We tried it separately.

 It was OK, but combining it was a pleasant surprise and an example of flavors

that really complimented each other and created its

own unique flavor when eaten together.”  – Chef Jim

(Read the rest of this entry…)

01.23Thai Cooking Demonstration | Four Seasons Resort Hualalai

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Four Season’s Chef James “Jim” Babian never disappoints. He is Executive Chef at Four Season’s Resort Hualalai and has become something of an expert on Thai food. You’ll remember he cooked a fabulous Thai dinnerfor my husband and me earlier this year. He surprised us with  a Thai cooking demonstration when we brought our family to the resort for the first time a few months ago. Everyone got in the act and we ate like kings.

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First course was Tom Yum Soup. Delicious shrimp, shitake mushrooms, lemon grass, Kaffir lime leaves and fresh lime juice were spotlighted in this appetizer. Most of the ingredients for the meal were grown in the hotel’s herb garden.

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Next up was Chef Jim’s Thai Beef Salad. The combination of heirloom tomatoes, prime New York steak grilled to perfection, Thai chili peppers, fresh cilantro and lime juice, along with a few “secret” Thai ingredients was definitely a favorite and easy to prepare.

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OK. we were starting to get full now, but another course was being prepped. It just happened to be another of my husband’s favorites. We love Pad (Phad) Thai and it was fun to see how Chef Jim added his special flair to this colorful Thai dish.  Garden fresh seasonings combine with traditional thai condiments and you end up with one of Thailand’s most popular dishes.

FInally, we came to the end of the meal and Chef Sean made a fresh pineapple fruit sorbet in a matter of minutes. The taste was so concentrated we had a hard time believing there was no added sugar. Just lightly baked fresh pineapple slices to concentrate the sugar and add to a magic “$3,000 instant sorbet machine. It was a delicious way to end our meal.

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Nothing more fun than watching great chefs at work, showing us the step by step recipes for great Thai food. My “Blue Baker” helped with preparation and everyone in the family had a great time watching and eating. Our family wants to  thank Chef Jim and Chef Shaun Acosta, Sous Chef,  for a great afternoon of cooking and, more importantly, a great meal. This is one we we will remember, as we try to recreate the great food we enjoyed this afternoon.

– The Gourmet Review


All of Chef Jim’s recipes for our  Thai meal are included in links on today’s blog post. Give them a try!

01.20Tom Yum Soup Recipe | The Four Seasons Resort Hualalai

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Tom Yum Soup is a favorite Thai dish in our house. Executive Chef Jim Babian shares his fabulous recipe. Nothing quite like having your favorite soup at The Four Seasons Resort Hualalai.


Total cooking and prep time 15-20 minutes


8 cups water

8 Shrimp peeled and deveined (save shells)

10 each shitake mushrooms (sliced)

3-4 limes

2-3 lemon grass stalks (tied in knot)*

6 each kaffir lime Leaves*

4 tablespoons fish Sauce*

10 sprigs cilantro

4 chili peppers*

2 tablespoons  nam prig pow* (chili bean paste with soy oil) split in 8 bowls

* These ingredients can be found at any Asian market. Four Seasons grows on the premises!

Read the Notes below and add whatever garnishes you would like to the list of ingredients.


Bring water to boil. Add lemon grass, shrimp shells and simmer 5 minutes.

Add remaining ingredients. Simmer 2 minutes and then remove shrimp. Simmer another 3-4 minutes until flavors have developed.

Adjust seasonings and flavor with lime juice and fish sauce. At this point you can serve or cool down and reheat later. (Remove shrimp shells and stems if desired)

When ready to serve, put shrimp in bowl . Then add hot broth and garnish with cilantro.


Chef Jim says there are a number of ways to serve Tom Yum Soup. If you like rustic, leave everything in and just eat around the stems. For a more elegant presentation, strain the whole soup.  Then have all the garnishes in warm bowls ready to go. At service, pour the broth on top of the shrimp (chopped and split perhaps), some diced tomato, fresh sliced thin shiitake mushrooms, scallions and finally the cilantro leaves. You can add some long, thinly sliced basil (chiffonade the basil) and even a few drops of scallion oil to be sexy.

-The Gourmet Review

11.03Pad Thai Recipe | Chef Babian at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai

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Pad Thai. Wouldn’t you love to make this at home? Look no further than Four Seasons Resort Hualalai.  Executive Chef James Babian shares one of his favorite Thai recipes. This is delicious paired with his Tom Yom soup and Thai Beef Salad.



8 oz flat Thai noodles (rice noodles)

4 tablespoons vegetable oil

2 tablespoons chopped Garlic

1/4 cup green onions

4 oz ground pork

1/4 cup dried Shrimp (soak in sesame oil and fish sauce) optional


1/3 cup Tamarind paste (strained)

5 tablespoons Fish Sauce

2 tsp Palm Sugar

2-3 eggs (beaten)

1/2 cup chopped Peanuts

4 oz regular tofu, dust in corn starchEdit

1 tsp dried chili flakes

Juice from half lime

3 green onions, cut into 1″ lengths


1 cup bean sprouts green chilies

Lime wedges


Place noodles in a bowl and add enough hot water to cover, soak 20 to 30 minutes, soft but still firm.

Mix together tamrind paste, sugar and fish sauce hold.

Heat oil in wok, stir fry tofu to golden brown, remove and drain.

In pan add garlic and green onions cook briefly.

Add pork and dried shrimp, stir fry until pork is browned.

Reduce heat, add drained noodles to pan and carefully fold them in to heat.

Clear a spot in the pan add the beaten eggs, cook a bit to set up then break apart and stir in pan.

Add sauce mix, cook for a minute or so to flavor and noodles to absorb.

Add remaining ingredients, tofu, peanuts, chilies flakes, lime juice and scallions.

Remove from heat and add half the garnishes, serve the rest in bowls on side.

-The Gourmet Review

10.31The Four Seasons Hualalai | “Inside the Kitchen”

Four Seasons has a reputation for great food, so it’s no surprise to find rising culinary chefs creating fabulous dishes at the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai. Executive Sous Chef Nick boasts that Chef Angela is one of those rising stars. Check out her Grilled Beef Caprese Saladand her Hawaiian inspired Lobster Lillikoi Salad recipes. They are healthy, quick to prepare and delicious.

The Blue Baker and I, along with my youngest daughter, had the privilege of doing an “inside the kitchen” tour with Chef Angela this summer. Since the Blue Baker is now 11 years old, she had a few things she wanted to try during our hands on cooking lesson.

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First, we watched Chef Angela demonstrate how to make the pasta dough for the Beach Tree Restaurant that evening. Of course, all the dough is prepared in house with that special 00 flour that Chef Nick flies in from Italy.

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Then it was time to decide what type of pasta to roll out for the evening, while the fresh pasta sauce cooked in an enormous pot on the stove.

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The process of running the dough through the pasta maker takes a lot longer than I thought. Over and over the dough is put through a press like apparatus until it is rolled super thin. Only then is it actually cut, portion controlled and placed on a tray ready for evening diners.

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Next, we made pizza from scratch. Then we tried to “throw” the dough into something that resembled the shape of a pizza. Chef Angela was clearly more successful than my two girls at this!

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Finally, Chef Angela demonstrated how to dip the vanilla bon bons into liquid chocolate. I know what you’re thinking; you’d love to just eat some of that warm chocolate. Well, rest assured, we did just that and it was delicious!

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The chocolate bon bons are now one of our family’s favorite desserts. The presentation was on dry ice and we ate until we could eat no more.

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We loved how friendly everyone was. Each person worked quickly, but always with a smile and a friendly greeting.

That’s Chef Will, Garde Manager at the Resort, saying good bye to us. A big thanks to Chef Angela and her crew for a great “Inside the Kitchen” tour of the Beach Tree restaurant.

-The Gourmet Review

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