Drink Authentic Hawaiian Kona Coffee
Hawaiian Kona coffee is known the world over for its rich, medium-bodied and complex taste. Kona coffee is considered the king of coffee, and with good reason.
A perfect mix of cloud cover, temperature, high elevation and rich volcanic soil makes the north and south slopes of Kona ideal for coffee growing. The most expensive coffee in the world is 100 percent Kona coffee. A cup of pure Kona coffee is like a fine wine--and something all coffee lovers should experience.
Visiting a Hawaiian Coffee Farm
Most coffee farms in the Kona district are small, family-owned operations, and many provide tours to interested visitors. During a coffee farm tour, you’ll visit the orchards and learn about the arduous hand-picked harvesting process that ensures beans are picked only when they reach peak maturity. If you visit in the early part of the year you may experience “Kona Snow” as the white, fragrant coffee blossoms bloom.
From the orchard, you’ll go to the coffee mills, where you’ll learn how Hawaiian Kona coffee beans are sun-dried before being machine milled. Some Kona farmers sell their beans to roasters, while others are custom-roasted on site. Either way, your tour will probably end with a chance to taste pure Kona coffee.
In addition to farm tours, every November the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival takes place in the Historic Kailua Village in Kailua-Kona. The festival is the state’s oldest food festival and includes a popular coffee cupping (coffee tasting) event.
Buying Kona Coffee
If you want to take some Hawaiian Kona coffee home with you, you'll have plenty of opportunity. You can purchase the coffee directly from the coffee farmers, at souvenir stores, or at local grocery stores. Be aware that only coffee labeled with the “100% Kona Coffee” logo and emblem contains pure Kona coffee.
So-called Kona Blends are not blends from several Kona sources. Instead a Kona blend usually only contains 10 percent Kona coffee, with the remaining 90 percent composed of cheaper blends. If nothing else, the price difference should alert you--100 percent Kona is more expensive than Kona blends.
One word of warning—once you’ve tasted 100 percent Hawaiian Kona coffee, you might need to make it your regular cup of joe. It’s that good!