Daring adventures even a diva might enjoy think Madagascar

Delta Airlines, Adventure Science and Kensington Tours take you to mystical Madagascar


National Geographic award-winning travel company Kensington Tours in tandem with Adventure Science and the support of Delta Air Lines has created the first ever expedition to the remote unexplored northern section of the Strict Nature Reserve of Madagascar’s Great Tsingy. From October 1st -16 2014, a highly skilled team of explorers and scientists will trek, climb and crawl through the UNESCO World Heritage Site to document the secrets of 100 miles of the region’s labyrinths of sharp rocks, towering cliffs, endangered creatures and deep caves.
This ground-breaking 21st century exploration named 100 Miles of Wild: Madagascar’s Limestone Labyrinth, will showcase one of Africa’s final frontiers. The expedition has multiple goals; to expand the knowledge of lemur distribution within the park to estimate population numbers; to identify diversity and potential new species; to locate Jurassic period dinosaur mega tracks that are believed to exist in the area; to conduct preliminary investigation into an unexplored system of caverns and caves; and to create a detailed map with accompanying photos and video in order to share their findings with the rest of the world.

The expedition will be led by Dr. Simon Donato, a Kensington Tours’ Explorer in Residence, star of the Esquire Network’s Boundless and founder of Adventure Science. In addition, two other Kensington Tours’ Explorers in Residence will join Donato in this challenging expedition, including George Kourounis, an elite global adventurer and host of The Discovery Network’s Angry Planet series and Travis Steffens a renowned primatologist who studies the biogeography of lemurs in Madagascar. Rounding up the 14 person the team are an engineer, climbing experts, a former US Army ranger, a communication specialist, Malagasy Park officials and a local Kensington Tours guide.

“We are thrilled by the opportunity to support Simon, George, Travis and these other modern day adventurers in their quest into the heart of Madagascar’s Great Tsingy” says Kensington Tours Founder Jeff Willner. “So little is known about this region, it is truly where the map ends. We look forward to following the expedition during its daily updates on social media, and hope it inspires budding explorers and travelers of every kind to take the plunge and discover the places that fascinate them.”

Kensington Tours offers custom and private guided tours to over 90 countries worldwide, providing its guests with the flexibility and luxury of a tailor-made journey handcrafted by a team of destination experts. Kensington’s unique Explorers in Residence Program celebrates the great tradition of global exploration by supporting expeditions and allowing the public to follow the stories of acclaimed modern day adventurers including Royal Geographic Society Fellows, Explorers Club Fellows, TV personalities and other extreme travelers. Adventure Science is a volunteer organization that pairs adventure athletes with scientists to explore remote regions and conduct scientific research as well as humanitarian projects. Delta Air Lines, as the official airline partner of this expedition, is supporting exploration, wildlife preservation, scientific discovery and global stewardship.

 About Kensington Tours: Kensington Tours offers custom and private guided tours to over 90 countries worldwide. The flexibility of Kensington’s offerings results in tailor-made journeys that are carefully handcrafted to deliver personalized adventures like no other company. Kensington Tours has won awards from National Geographic Traveler “50 Tours of a Lifetime”, Travel + Leisure “World’s Best Awards”, Travel + Leisure “Best Luxury Adventure Company”, National Geographic Adventure “Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth”


Chef Mavro’s foodie fare for fall

Chef Mavro Restaurant


A letter from Chef Mavro – new Fall Menu!
“Great Service. Eeveryone treated us like royalty and even got a surprise anniversary dessert! Guest post on OT OpenTable Reviews 9/03/14

“Spectacular. Having dined all over the world and loving good food this is one of the top dining experiences of all time.” Guest post on OT 8/20/14


Aloha Patti,

Autumn in Hawaii is not really different than autumn in my native Provence. The days are shorter, local families are back home from vacation or to put their children in college. The kids are back to school, more activity in our streets, less on our beaches. The weather is beautiful, anyway, like Provence in Hawaii the weather is always beautiful & autumn is the best time to visit.

The colors of nature are softer & smooth, as well as our mood. Is the season of nuances & love. Best time for thinking…What are we going to cook… what are we going to eat…now? Sorry, sometimes I wonder if I am able to think about anything else than food!

Tournesol Rose, 2012, Napa

Here we go…

Due to popular demand, the Hana Hou menu continues with some of our greatest hits. Just like my Chef’s seasonal menu, it changes according to the availability of the freshest ingredients on the local market.

Our very popular Spicy Ahi is back! I love local food, but this one is by far my favorite. The idea is the same, only we use big eye ahi, sashimi grade, cut like poke and, instead of Japanese mayonnaise, we use aioli flavored with uni (sea urchin), Aleppo pepper (best chili powder in the world) and ogo (local seaweed). The spicy ahi is served on top of rice (in our version it’s basmati rice, seasoned like sushi rice). And finally the shoyu (soy sauce) is powdered in house. Just writing this I am salivating…


This Fall season our food & wine pairing committee included the very popular TV anchor Grace Lee from KHNL/KGMB. She loves to eat and she was a valuable addition to the committee.

Again Doug Johnson, our sommelier submitted a fantastic selection of wines, blind tasted with the spicy ahi. Despite the presence of a sake, the winner is the Tournesol rosé from Napa Valley made from pinot noir with aromas of cherry, strawberry & watermelon, beautiful balanced refreshing acidity. I think the rosé beat the sake because of the strong presence of garlic in the aioli.


Diver Scallop


What about our Fall Chef’s Menu which is full of new creations…


Diver scallop are harvested one by one & freshly received from Maine. Not bleached, not frozen just an outstanding quality that you want to handle with care. We crust the scallop with very thin slices of slab bacon then sautéed unilaterally until the bacon is crisped. Voila the scallop is ready. Hard to explain but for me, these scallops were calling for mushrooms. It is the tip of the short season of chanterelles & chanterelles it is going to be. Now the chanterelles are calling for fiddle head ferns, hoi’o, & here they are. The salad is served on top of a velvety mushroom velouté a dish inspire from the forest.

The wine committee selected a Puligny Montrachet premier cru. By the way, do you know too many restaurants in the country that serve Puligny Montrachet premier cru by the glass?

This one is from the 2010 “Clos de la Garenne from Louis Jadot. Its minerality matches perfectly the bacon, mushrooms & hoi’o & makes love with the scallops.


Fig & Pistachio


Desserts: in the restaurant like ours, desserts are as important as the savory dishes.The last thing you want, is a cake after a 7 course meal. The dessert has to be a harmonious continuation of the dinner. This is why I designed & executed the poached fig in spiced Burgundy wine accompanied with tapioca dumpling filled with toasted pistachio-fig marmalade & a side of crazy creamy pistachio ice cream. You might ask me how come your pistachio ice cream is not green? Just because we never use food coloring…

And the wine? Again, the Maculan, 2012 Dindarello won the dessert pairings. No surprise, this is a perfect dessert wine, not too sweet, long finish, ripe citrus fruit & orange blossom. What a marriage with the poached figs.


I am way too long. I have to get back to you for the rest of our new seasonal menu creations. You can check our website for all the other dishes including Berkshire Pork Loin, a new Wagyu beef recipe, and sauteed Hudson Valley fois gras, and yes I’ve kept the Onaga Salt Crust on for a bit longer! I invite you to follow me on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and since I post myself please excuse any bad grammar!

I’ll keep you posted as we have a new website coming within a week.

My new Chef de Cuisine Jeremy Shigekane & all our team look forward to cooking for you very soon.

George Mavro, chef/owner


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Chef Mavro Restaurant | 1969 S. King St. | Honolulu | HI | 96826