The commercial luau seems to be one of those quintessential Hawaiian tourist activities, but it's basically a big outdoor restaurant with a show to watch while you're eating dinner. There were some interesting dishes, some pretty tasty, others not so much.
Some awesome banana bread was available along with a pretty tasty ahi (tuna) poke. There was purple poi there too, which was a lot more watery than I was expecting. I was expecting poi to be something more of a mashed potato kind of consistency, but this poi was more like a salad dressing consistency. Didn't taste like much either and didn't really add anything to the meal at all.
Just before dinner started, people gathered around the imu to watch the roasted pig being uncovered.
The roasted pig served at the luau (I don't think it was the same one that was uncovered) tasted pretty good - tender, flavourful and not too dry. I thought it would have a little more smoky flavour than it did, but it was pretty mild. Since I was still recovering from whatever flu-like thing I had contracted, I didn't eat a whole lot of food, although I did manage to pack away a few yummy desserts.
The white squares were some kind of coconut square which I thought were very good, as were the macadamia nut tarts.
Old Lahaina Luau is an attractive setting once you get inside, and there's plenty of things to check out while you're waiting for the buffet to open up. You can check out people making Hawai'ian totems and other crafts, or learn basic hula steps from one of the staff. Or just wander around with a fruity drink in hand and enjoy the scenery or the expansive ocean view. It's a little on the pricey side, but if you've got room in the budget and looking for your first luau experience, it's worth a try.
Food: 3.5 out of 5
Ambiance and entertainment: 4 out of 5