Mama's lives just off the infamous Road to Hana that hugs the northern coast of Maui, caught between lush, tropical rainforest and dazzling blue ocean.
First, try the Polynesian Ono, which is served like a ceviche, with a delightful island-like surprise (I'll give you a hint-it grows on coconut trees). Ono is a very typical Hawaiian fish, and the Hawaiian word for "tasty," and its mildly sweet, delicate, white flesh most definitely lives up to its name. Mama marinated it in lime and coconut milk, "Tahitian style," and the coconut milk adds an incredible layer of sweetness and flavor you don't find in more typical ceviches. Then it's all served up in a fresh Maui coconut. Gilligan would be proud.
Next up, the incomparable Hamachi Kama. The "kama" means it's the neck or collar of a hamachi, or yellowtail tuna. Sounds unappetizing, but it's actually the most delicious part of the fish, and possibly one of the best-kept secrets around. (Next time you're out for sushi, ask for it. It's rarely on the menu, and the sushi chefs are probably angling to save it for themselves.) This tasty morsel was served with the fins, and fried in a batter so delicious, the Colonel must be tossing in his sleep. There were a million explosive flavors, with the peppery, salty crunch of the batter and the soft flesh of the kama. Guarantee you'll end up eating the entire fin. Wow.
I don't know whose actual "mama" created "Mama's Fish House," but I do know that kid is one lucky S.O.B.