Ka`u Coffee at Mai Grille
At Mai Grille in the Waikoloa Kings’ Golf Course clubhouse, Chef Allen Hess has been creating buzz not only with a menu of delectable cuisine, but with the blended, Ka‘u-grown coffee he serves.
“My family bought a 5-acre plot in the Ka`u region (near South Point) six years ago,” Hess says. “We now have about 6,000 coffee plants growing there.”
The farm grows three varieties, including Typica (“for its hardiness,” says Hess), Liberica (“for its vanilla flavors and fancier notes”), and Mocha (“which lends a robust, woody flavor”). The blend made on the farm is available exclusively in Mai Grille and — under the Jara Farms label — at several specialty stores on island.
“In recent years, Ka`u coffee has been winning awards,” Hess says. “The farmers in Ka`u are very proud of that. Our family has a finger on every aspect of the coffee production, from planting and pruning to picking the beans when they are ripest to roasting it to a perfect medium dark. For us, it’s about creating a highly enjoyable blend of the highest quality.”
At Waikoloa Beach Resort, coffee is celebrated and enjoyed, as befits one of the state’s most prized crops.