Kona coffee wins state's first cupping competition


POSTED: Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Onouli Farm of Kona won top honors at Hawaii's first coffee-cupping competition this weekend at the Hawaii Coffee Association's 14th annual conference at Maui Tropical Plantation.

The coffee was among 69 entries statewide put to the taste test before three experts: Warren Muller of Inter American Coffee, Shawn Hamilton of Java City Roasters and Paul Thornton of Coffee Bean International. Coffees, roasted on the mainland, were scored based on wet and dry aromas, acidity, body, balance, sweetness and aftertaste.

In cupping, coffees are measured and placed in porcelain bowls. Judges assess their dry aroma, then water is added. After a few minutes of brewing, judges break the “;crust”; of grounds to evaluate the wet aroma. Next, they scrape off the grounds, slurp the coffee and spit it out. Coffees are replicated three to five times and assigned points. In the first round of cupping, 36 coffees were eliminated; a second round brought the field to 10; and a third, to five. More finishers:

» Second: Kowali Farm, Kona

»Third:  Brazen Hazen Farm, Kona

» Fourth:  Ka'u Royal, R&G Farms

» Fifth: Pavaraga Coffee, Kau

» Sixth: Waiono Farm, Kona

» Seventh: Kupaa Farms, Maui

» Eighth: Keokea Farms, Maui

» Ninth: Kealakekua Coffee Co., Kona

» 10th: Malia Ohana, Kona

» 11th: Greenwell Farms, Kona

» 12th: Kona Cherry Hill, Kona

» 13th: Aroma Trading Co., Kau

» 14th: Heavenly Hawaiian Farms, Kona

» 15th: MoLoa'a Bay Coffee, Kauai

Visit hawaiicoffeeassoc. org.


Rusty's Kau coffee scores big

Rusty's Hawaiian, a coffee company in Kau, earned the top score in a cupping of Bourbon varietal coffees by “;Coffee Review: The World's Leading Coffee Buying Guide.”;

Rusty's 95-point score puts it among 46 coffees with a score of 95 or higher in the publication's history.

“;Coffee Review”; founder Ken Davids writes in the July issue that Rusty's Bourbon is “;utterly pure yet soaringly intense.”; The Bourbon variety is prized for its “;fruity sweetness tempered by a dry pungency,”; according to Davids.

“;It is yet another award for Kau coffee,”; says Rusty's Hawaiian owner Lorie Obra. “;This offers even more proof that we are growing a world-class product.”;

Rusty's coffee is grown on 12 acres situated on the slopes of Mauna Loa on the Big Island, just north of Pahala. The company grows, processes, roasts and ships its product directly to customers.

Visit rustyshawaiian.com or call Obra at 928-8916.