Meet the Chef


Chef Paris Nabavi

Paris Nabavi is a chef, restaurateur, entrepreneur, husband and father living and working in Maui. His journey in hospitality has taken him from his native Iran to Europe, Canada, and the United States, where he eventually found a home in the 50th state. Here he put down roots, opened a series of restaurants, and became involved with the movement to nurture a deep understanding and love of food in school children.

"It really began after my daughter, Layla, was born," he says. "As she grew up, I wanted her to be aware of where her food came from and inspire in her a love of cooking." Paris and his wife Donna decided to plant an edible garden at home. Once Layla started school, Paris worked with community groups to start gardens on campus to be used as teaching laboratories. When other schools showed interest, he donated the seeds needed. He now supplies seeds each year to 46 public school gardens in Maui County.

"There's a word in the Hawaiian language — kuleana — that means "responsibility and privilege," says the chef. "It's my kuleana to educate and nourish the next generation about food. Throughout our lives, what we eat and how we eat it are central to our health, our joy, and our sense of community and family."

To achieve this, Chef Paris actively works to build awareness for nutrition and food sustainability in Maui's youth. He and his wife Donna recently started the Nabavi Legacy Fund to organize their efforts and those of Maui's generous food and beverage community.

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Persian Dinner Nights

Four times a year, Paris and Donna open their West Maui home to about twenty guests to showcase the cuisine of Paris's native Iran. These events have a dual-purpose: to foster a deeper understanding of Persian culture and to raise funds for beneficiaries of the Nabavi Legacy fund.

The demonstrations are something of a hot ticket, and seats sell out fast. Those who would like to attend are encouraged to sign up for Chef Nabavi's mailing list and be among the first to hear when a new dinner is announced. Guests are accepted on a first-come, first-reserved basis, and are asked to make a minimum donation per guest payable on the night of the event.


Your Seat at the Table

Subscribe to our mailing list to be among the first to know about our next cooking demonstration and stay informed about the efforts of the Nabavi Legacy Fund. Your information will not be shared, and you may unsubscribe any time.