While you probably know about Kauai for its beautiful beaches, lush forests, and world-class watersports opportunities, the island is also known for its coffee. The history of coffee on Kauai is intertwined with the island’s culture, agriculture, and economy, creating a unique blend of tradition and innovation that sustains to this day.
The team at Parrish Kauai is here to give you an inside look at Kauai’s fascinating coffee history. While we specialize in providing travelers with luxurious vacation rentals, we have worked hand in hand with a local coffee company, so we have many insights on this subject. Here is our guide on coffee in Kauai.
A History of Coffee on Kauai
The history of coffee in Hawaii dates back to 1817, when Don Francisco de Paula Marin, a Spanish advisor to King Kamehameha II, introduced coffee plants to the islands. Marin’s coffee plants failed, but in 1825, Chief Boki, the governor of Oahu, brought coffee plants back from a trip to Brazil. The coffee plants were planted in the Manoa Valley, and after achieving success, they were planted in other regions, including on Kauai.
Kauai and the other Hawaiian Islands quickly proved to be ideal for coffee cultivation due to the fertile volcanic soil, proper elevation, and climate. Soon, Kauai became home to Kauai’s first commercial coffee plantation. The Kauai Coffee Company, which operates today, is a descendant of this historic coffee plantation and continues to produce high-quality beans while embracing modern techniques.
While Kauai has cultivated coffee since the 19th century, the industry really took off in the 1980s, when the sugarcane industry took massive losses. Following the downfall of the area’s sugarcane industry, many local plantations pivoted by growing coffee instead, which proved to be more profitable.
Relevance in the Modern Era
Today, Kauai coffee holds a unique place in the global coffee market. Kauai’s coffee is celebrated for its distinctive flavor profile, influenced by the island’s unique terrain, which includes volcanic soil and the perfect combination of sunshine and rain. Kauai coffee beans are renowned for their mild, mellow taste, with a subtle sweetness and low acidity that sets them apart from other Hawaiian coffees.
Some of Kauai’s top coffee brands include Kauai Coffee and Kauai Roastery. You can experience their products locally on the island or by purchasing online. In total, Hawaiian coffee plantations produce between six and seven million pounds of coffee beans a year, so there is a good chance that you have already tasted Hawaiian coffee beans without knowing it.
Experience the Parrish Blend
Parrish Kauai has teamed up with Kauai Roastery to create the Parrish Blend, our very own signature blend of 100 percent Hawaiian coffee. Our blend is rich in taste but not bitter, offering notes of chocolate and berries. You can taste our special blend at one of our Kauai vacation rentals. There is no better way to start your day on vacation than with a delicious cup of coffee and the magnificent views that our vacation rentals provide.
We would love to host your next getaway to Kauai. Our vacation rentals include condos from Kauai’s most prestigious resorts to private vacation homes. To stay with us, 1-800-325-5701 or chat with us online to make a reservation.