Perhaps it’s the high-elevation, the perfect coffee growing temperatures or the rich volcanic soil that makes Kona coffee so good. Maybe it is just the perfect combination of wind and rain coming together. Regardless of what actually makes this coffee taste so good, there is one thing for certain. It’s a coffee that’s been prized since Mark Twain first wrote about it in the mid 19th century.
Although Kona beans are some of the best coffee beans in the world, how they’re handled really affects their quality and taste. If they’re not roasted right or properly processed, then they’ll lose some of their rich flavors. That’s why we’ve taken it upon ourselves to track down the best Kona coffee available, so everyone has an opportunity to enjoy it.
Best Kona Coffees Of 2019
10Hawaiian Gold Whole Bean Blend
This gourmet blend of coffee from Hawaiian Gold is a combination of 10% Kona beans and 90% Arabica beans. The Kona beans in this formulation are allowed to absorb the full radiance of the sun and drink in the rich volcanic soil, and this results in a nice smooth mouth-feel. All of these beans are medium-roasted to extract their flavor and are then packaged for sale to the consumer. Although these beans can never come close to the taste, and the quality of true Kona coffee, they do produce a nice tasting coffee with a full rich body and a smooth aftertaste.
9Mark Ferrari 100% Pure Kona Beans
These medium-roasted whole coffee beans are grown by a Kona coffee farm since 1980, so they may know a thing or two about growing coffee. This 2-pound bag of coffee contains nothing but 100% pure Kona coffee, straight from Hawaii and roasted to seal in its incredible flavor and aroma. Although we found this brand’s medium-roast to be a little darker than we were expecting or wanted, it still produced a great tasting coffee that had plenty of depth to it. This might not be the best Kona coffee available, but it is a unique coffee that has a rich aroma and flavor. It’s definitely a coffee worth checking out by any coffee aficionado looking for something a little bit different to drink.
8Hualalai Estate 100% Pure Premium Kona
This coffee is grown on the fertile slopes of the Hualalai Volcano in Hawaii, which results in a coffee that’s rich, sublime and with a splendid flavor profile. These high-quality beans are then medium-dark roasted to bring out all of the essential oils in the bean. This creates a whole bean that can be ground up perfectly and brews an incredible cup of coffee. Another thing worth mentioning about these quality beans is that they are always pesticide-free, so you can enjoy the rich flavor of this coffee without worrying about ingesting harmful chemicals. Although it might be more expensive than other brands of coffee, it is a delicious product.
7Don Francisco’s Whole Bean Medium-Roast Blend
Although this coffee isn’t 100% pure and is instead a Kona coffee blend, it does produce a nice cup of coffee. This is probably because the company that manufacturers this coffee has a ton of experience that they’ve applied to this product. In Cuba, this family has been creating some of the best-tasting coffees for almost 150-years now. And now they’ve applied this know-how to this product. They source the highest quality beans, they roast them to a perfect medium-roast, and they make sure to sample each step along the way for quality assurances. This allows them to create a blend that’s smooth, tastes good and never has a bitter aftertaste to it.
6Caza Trail Kona Blend Single-Serve Coffee Cups
These single-serve coffee cups are suitable for use with all Keurig 1.0 & 2.0 brewers, so coffee lovers can enjoy a nice cup of coffee anytime they want. Inside of these cups is a coffee that’s made from a blend of Kona and Latin America Arabica coffee beans that are medium-dark roasted, ground and then placed into these cups for brewing convenience. When brewed, these cups produce a coffee with a subtle taste, a soft aroma and with an acidity that will tickle the fancy of many coffee aficionados. Even though K-cups might not be for everyone, it’s a decent product that will allow many people to brew a nice cup of coffee in the morning.
5Hawaiian Isles Kona Blend Vanilla Macadamia Nut
Made with a blend of only 10% Kona coffee beans that are medium-roasted and given an all-purpose grind, this coffee might not be for everyone but it does deliver some great flavor. This product has a subtle combination of vanilla and macadamia nuts added to it to create a truly tropical tasting coffee that some people will flip over. It’s low-key taste and acidity makes it a very good coffee to have during breakfast or after lunch.
4Hawaiian Isla Kona Blend Chocolate Macadamia Nut
This brand of coffee from Hawaiian Isles Coffee Company can be found all over the world. It can be found at military commissaries, at a variety of different hotels and at some stores and restaurants as well. That’s probably because this company makes great tasting coffees that can be enjoyed all hours of the day. And this coffee is no exception to that rule. It’s made using a blend of 10% Kona beans and has a chocolate macadamia nut flavor that many people will enjoy. It brews up to make a rich cup of coffee and is always smooth without any bitterness.
3Imagine 100% Hawaiian Whole Kona Beans
Quite a few things come together to make this coffee one of the best Kona coffees available. This product uses 100% pure Kona beans that have been grown at altitudes of 2,220-feet in rich volcanic soil. These beans have been allowed to soak up the Hawaiian sun and rain and are allowed to mature into full-size coffee beans. These mature beans are graded extra-fancy, the highest grade possible, due to their size and lack of defects. These beans are then medium-dark roasted to pull out their essential oils and make them accessible for the brewing process. All of which just means that these beans are really good, even though they’re a bit expensive.
2Blue Horse Dark Roast Whole Kona Beans
Anyone looking to buy real Kona coffee is going to want to make sure that the product they buy is actually the product it claims to be. After all, a lot of coffees are really blends and not true Kona coffees. Fortunately, this coffee is such a product. These are 100% real Kona beans that have been sourced from a single coffee estate in Hawaii. They are shade-grown, hand-picked and sun-dried to bring out the true flavor of the beans. And since they’re sustainably grown and free of pesticides or herbicides, consumers can rest assured they are getting quality coffee beans.
1Kona Gold Rum Company Whole Beans
Grown in the shade of Ohia and Macadamia Nut trees in the volcanic soil of the Kona region of Hawaii, these beans are ready to put a little bit of tropical sunshine into anyone’s coffee cup. These beans have a bright flavor and a subtle aroma that is a result of where they’re grown and how they’re processed. These beans are air roasted in the Hawaiian sun to bring out their true flavor, which is something that can’t be achieved by drum drying the beans. This results in a coffee bean that’s can be ground and brewed to create one of the best cups of coffee around.
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Kona Coffee Buying Guide
Without a doubt, Kona coffee is some of the best-tasting coffee in the world. Unfortunately, it’s a coffee that a whole lot of people don’t know about or may have tried. To correct this problem, we’ve created this guide to buying Kona coffee. Hopefully, it will dispel some of the myths that surround this product and help this coffee claim its rightful place in the coffee world.
What Is Kona Coffee?
If you’re not familiar with Kona coffee, then you may want to listen up because we are going to explain to you what differentiates a Kona coffee from any other type of coffee. Kona coffee is grown between the Mauna Loa and Hualalai volcanoes in the Kona district of the big Hawaiian island. The rich volcanic soil, the high-altitude and the perfect combination of weather conditions come together to make this some of the best coffees in the world. Although different manufacturers run their operations different from one another, most of the Kona coffee beans are hand harvested and roasted to allow their flavor to fully express itself.
The History of Kona Coffee
During the 1820s, Reverend Samuel Ruggles brought the first coffee plants to Kealakekua-Kona, Hawaii. Although there was some skepticism as to whether coffee could be an important agricultural crop for Hawaii, it was undeniable that the coffee grown there was something special. It even caught the attention of Mark Twain when he visited Hawaii. He even wrote that it had a richer flavor than any other coffee he had tasted.
As time passed, this coffee would continue to cement its reputation among coffee drinkers as the best coffee available. Then something horrible happened in the 1990s that would affect how Kona coffee was sold. A less than ethical coffee manufactured bought lower quality coffee beans from Central America and sold them as authentic Kona coffee. Although the perpetrator didn’t get away with his scheme for long, it did result in all Kona coffee beans having to be tested and certified by the Hawaiian Department of Agriculture before it can be sold as genuine Kona coffee.
Kona Blends Versus 100% Kona Coffee
Although 100% Kona coffee has to be certified by the Hawaiian Department of Agriculture before it can be sold as Kona coffee, there is sort of a loophole when it comes to Kona Blends. That’s because as long as Kona blends contain some Kona coffee, then they can be listed as a Kona blend. And this means that a blend can have as little as 10% of actual Kona coffee and still be listed as a blend.
All of this simply means that if you want to get the full impact of this coffee, then you are going to want to search for 100% Kona coffees. Now don’t get us wrong, there’s nothing wrong with blends. In fact, a few of them have made it on our top list, but truth be told, they simply aren’t as good as 100% Kona coffee. So if you want the best, then you’ll need to buy the best.
Kona coffee doesn’t have to be a mystery that’s enjoyed by a small group of coffee aficionados. Hopefully, we cut through some of the mystery associated with this brand of coffee and have turned our readers on to the possibility of this coffee. If you haven’t tried this brand of coffee, then we hope that we’ve whetted your appetite. If we have, then feel free to choose from one of the coffees we’ve selected. Coffee drinkers who are already a fan of this coffee are also going to want to peruse our top ten list to discover brands they may not have previously tried.