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Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa Features Local Ingredients in Luscious New Desserts at ‘AMA ‘AMA

posted on April 16th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


When you cook on an island paradise, using delectable local ingredients only makes the food taste better. And Chef Ron Viloria at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina, Hawai’i, gets creative with sweets on his new dessert menu at beachside ‘AMA ’AMA – Contemporary Island Cooking restaurant.

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“We’re using native mamaki tea for the panna cotta, and lavender with tart kalamansi (a citrus fruit also known as calamondin) for the semifreddo,” says Chef Ron. The fragrant lavender comes from Ali’i Kula lavender farms in Maui, and the kitchen also is sourcing local honeycomb for the semifreddo, a “semi-frozen” dessert.

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Cocoa is another Hawaiian product, and Chef Ron is using Kokoleka chocolate for his “Chocolate with Aloha” dessert that’s made with chocolate from Waialua Estate (cacao and coffee beans) on O’ahu’s North Shore, where the nutrient-rich volcanic soil, abundant rainfall and plentiful sunshine produce some of the world’s best cacao.

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Chef Ron also added a modern representation of Hawai’i’s traditional mochi cake, a tender, soft, chewy dessert made with rice. And he’s using lemongrass and coconut in the lemongrass crème Catalana, an island version of the classic French crème brûlée made with fresh coconut.

“Of six desserts on the menu, five are new,” says Chef Ron. (He kept the popular chocolate cake, now called “Mocha Chantilly Cake.”) Guests seems to love the lemongrass crème Catalana too, he says. Hopefully you’ll get to visit Aulani soon – Chef Ron changes the desserts about every six months.

“It was so much fun sourcing products locally to make some delicious desserts for our guests at ‘AMA ‘AMA,” says Chef Ron. “Giving diners a taste of Hawai’i makes their vacation extra special.”

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Filed: Aulani, Disney Dining, Disney Vacation Club, Hotels & Resorts

1 Comment Add Yours

1

Benjamin on April 16th, 2014 at 6:52 pm

I just have to say that I loved this restaurant.

My husband and I stayed at the resort for our anniversary last year and absolutely loved it.

I wanted to mention that we were at first a little disappointed walk into such a fresh and healthy-looking atmosphere and not see any vegan or vegetarian options on the menu.

Our fears were soon laid to rest. We told the hosts and the wait staff that we’re vegan and they happily sent the chef out to discuss with us the various vegan options he could make special for us. They even had vegan protein options, which is surprisingly hard to find in most restaurants for some reason.

The generosity, adaptability and creativity of the entire ‘Ama ‘Ama team really saved our trip for us!

We weren’t able to order any desserts because they all had dairy or egg in them, so we ended up drinking our desserts at one of the bars. The desserts on the menu all sounded so tasty. It would be great if there were some vegan options that we can try the next time we’re there!

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