Big Island Coffee Roasters – Hawaiian Puna Coffee Excellence December 30 2014
Look what Santa brought us for Christmas! A new roaster! We are happy to welcome Big Island Coffee to the Emery Coffee Company lineup of award winning roasters. They roast coffees from all the growing regions of Hawaii including their own farm in the Puna region. In 2013, their Puna coffee won the Hawaii Coffee Association’s Statewide Cupping Competition and became the first non-Kona or Ka’u farm to do so. But let them tell you their story…
We are wild coffee lovers. Our farm and roasting company grew from a penchant to explore our senses, develop our skills, and help anyone else do the same. With attention and taste, our mission is to weave the best coffees from Hawaii’s wild and beautiful places with fine craftsmanship and display.
BIG ISLAND, SMALL OPERATION
In 2010, the opportunity emerged to buy a small coffee farm in a disregarded, impoverished region of Hawaii. With little to lose, we thought, “Why not?” As we integrated with the community of farmers and sampled coffees from around the Big Island, we were surprised by the variety and quality that goes largely overshadowed. We wanted to change that.
Over the next years we taught ourselves to cultivate, process and roast. We then trialed and tasted the differences between coffee washing experiments and roast profiles. Our end-goal was always the same: the objectively best coffee we could produce from our land. When we discovered methods and flavors we liked, we taught neighboring farmers to do the same and offered them higher wages for their coffees than they’d ever seen before.
To our amazement, our efforts began paying off.
In July of 2013, one of our Puna coffees won Grand Champion in the Hawaii Coffee Association’s Statewide Cupping Competition and became the first non-Kona or Ka’u farm to do so. The same year, the USDA honored our efforts to improve high-quality coffee output by providing us a grant for importing specialized coffee grading equipment. With this machine, we can help independent Puna and Hamakua farmers improve their coffee quality, reputation and livelihood effortlessly. (And later that year we were awarded a Hawaii Senate Certificate for doing just that!) Finally, as the year closed, our Honeyed Yellow Caturra coffee placed in Coffee Review’s ”30 Top Coffees of 2013″.
Today, we serve on the board of directors for the Hawaii Coffee Association – Hawaii’s largest organization serving all islands and industries, from cherry to cup. We’re excited to continue serving Hawaii’s coffee lovers, from retailers to roasters, baristas to farmers, and at-home drinkers.
Since moving, our lives have been full of sweat, adventure, discipline and persistent learning. What began as a charming coffee farm in the rainy jungle-town of Mountain View has become an award winning farm, micro-roaster and processing mill for boutique Hawaii coffees.
A love for wild and beautiful places brought us to the Big Island. Respect for the terrain and appreciation for the farmers who craft from it has kept us here. And the repeated patronage and support from our customers — like you — has made this entire transformation possible.
Kelleigh & Brandon