Wednesday, November 12, 2008
In the tropics, coffee is a serious subject. You might be thinking, "It is pretty serious around my house come 7am." But us lucky mainlanders get to press a button and have that black gold percolated in minutes, rarely do we consider where those beans come from and how they get from the plant to cup. A visit to Kauai offers visitors the chance to learn about coffee in detail with visits to two working coffee plantations.
Just south of Poipu, in Kalaheo, is the Kauai Coffee Estate. Besides being the best place to taste a number of freshly roasted local blends for free, you can also tour the estate and see how the coffee bean is processed (also for free). Afterwards, with views of the coffee trees and the ocean beyond, you'll sip vanilla mac nut flavored coffee and probably buy some beans to take home. Visit kauaicoffee.com for more details.
For people who want to explore a working organic coffee plantation, Blair Estate, offers guided tours of their farm and processing plant. You'll need to make reservations in advance through their website: blairestatecoffee.com.
Finally, for the best espresso on the island, visit Small Town Coffee in Old Town Kapaa. The owner consistently wins barista awards--and they use Barefoot Coffee Roasters--a NorCal favorite. Visit smalltowncoffee.com.