October 2013: Mana Foods celebrates 30th birthday

Everyone from Woody Harrelson to Willie Nelson has shopped there, and you can "feel the mana" in the aisles. We're talking about the illustrious Mana Foods in Paia, which will offer deals for its 30th anniversary from October 27 to Halloween. "The celebration shows our appreciation for the continued support," says partner Sunette Fenn. "We invite everyone to come in and enjoy samples, delicious demos, deeper discounts and daily raffles.In addition, while supplies last, anyone that spends $200 or more will receive a swag bag containing a variety of awesome Mana Foods goodies." Mana will introduce new fresh pasta made in house by Marco Graziani, who hails from Avezzano, Italy, outside of Rome. Graziani is also the store's cheese buyer and he really knows his stuff. His wife, Dana Graziani, helps him out on the pasta machine and they churn out fresh raviolis, say stuffed with fresh spinach and ricotta cheese. They're working on gluten-free pastas now. The couple will demo their latest spins on fresh pasta from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, October 28, and fresh pasta dishes will be offered daily at the deli. Mana Food's deli selection is hugely popular, and Deli Chef Ann Gale has been running a tight ship or 16 years now. "She's phenomenal," says Fenn. "She makes her famous Pad Thai noodles, and her rosemary chicken is legendary. Ann's pork quesadillas are already wiped out today, they went so fast and she's got new and really tasty vegetarian millet burgers, too.

Vegan carrot-cake cupcakes and new chocolate-chip man-nut cookies are all the rage with the Paia set. Raw food Chefs Glenn Carpenter and Ben Friedlander make some tasty raw lilikoi-raspberry crepes, carrot-cashew pates, and dried kale krisps for a crunchy snack. Raw mocha toddies are made with organic cold-pressed macadamia nut milk and raw chocolate. Plus, the salad bar is always a big hit. Also new are Maui Kombucha drinks in at least two flavors. Looking for produce? Mana Foods sells 90 percent organic and and 50 percent local produce, according to Produce Manager Gary Butler, who brings in unusual items from small farms.

"We have a strong, creative team of people with great ideas," says partner Chris Ozee. "A lot of Mana's success is due to listening to our customers' requests. We hear what they want and do our best to get it." On Halloween, employees will be dressing in costumes. "Halloween is the last day of our birthday celebration, and we will be giving away healthy treats for the keiki, so come on by," says Fenn. "We hope to see you there!'