The Ritz-Carlton Kapalua has appointed Alvina Savella as head chef of the resort's signature restaurant, the Banyan Tree.
Savella was born and raised in Maui, and is known for his focus on fresh, local ingredients and modern take on Hawaiian flavors. His signature Hawaiian sweet bread features Kula strawberry-foie gras, cracked black pepper jam and Surfing Goat Chevre whipped Vermont butter. The Banyan Tree, with an open-air atmosphere and sunset-facing views, is also scheduled for a remodel later this year.
Savella comes from Pulehu, an Italian restaurant at the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas, where he was chef de cuisine for several years. Savella returns to the Ritz-Carlton family of resorts after working earlier in his career at Jer-ne Restaurant at Ritz-Carlton, Marina del Rey in Southern California.
"Savella brings a fresh perspective and boisterous personality to the already talented Banyan Tree team," Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua general manager Mike Kass said in a release. "His creativity and passion for fresh, innovative cuisine results in beautiful and strikingly flavorful dishes that elevate the dining experience for our guests."
The Banyan Tree renovation in 2017 is part of the resort's ongoing remodel, which began in summer 2016 with the completion of new Residential Suites, a new Burger Shack beachside restaurant, and a revamped lobby lanai experience.