When you hear the word Hawaii, what is the first thing you think of? Ok, the second thing? Maybe even the third. If coffee doesn’t come to mind, then its okay … I forgive you, but the title of this post should have given it away.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the beach. And I love myself a Mai Tai at any hour of the day. But I can have these on almost any island. What I can’t have on any island is home-grown, 100% certified Kona Coffee.
Did you know Hawaii is the only state in the U.S. where coffee is grown? Interesting right?!? Many people assume coffee is grown in Washington state, but that’s only because of popular coffee chains are headquartered there.
Growing coffee requires specific growing conditions. These include high altitudes, tropical climates, and soil that is rich. And there is only one state in America that has all of this … Hawaii of course.
Coffee is grown in more than 50 countries around the world, most of which are in “The Bean Belt” or the Equatorial zone. Brazil is the undisputed largest coffee-producing country in the world, and has been for about the last 100 years.
Hawaii has been producing coffee since the mid-nineteenth century, before it even became a state. And while coffee is grown on several of Hawaii’s islands, 100% Kona Coffee can only be found on the Big Island of Hawaii.
On my recent visit to Hawaii I went on a coffee tour to Lion Coffee. It was my first coffee tour ever and as a lover of this roasted bean, my excitement and senses were in overload. While I couldn’t take pictures inside the coffee roasting facility (trust me I tried) I do have pictures from the tasting room.