As a farmer I am aware of my product but I am curious of what others think about Ka'u Coffee. How does it compare to others in the industry?

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To get the discussion started, I'll go ahead and say that I am completely unaware of Ka'u Coffee.

-bry
Ditto.
Ka'u Coffee is grown on The Big Island of Hawaii south of the Kona Districts and has been gaining a solid reputation. Since not grown in the North or South Kona Districts isn't Kona and hence different name. Similar Island Cup profile.
miKe mcKoffee aka Mike McGinness said:
Ka'u Coffee is grown on The Big Island of Hawaii south of the Kona Districts and has been gaining a solid reputation. Since not grown in the North or South Kona Districts isn't Kona and hence different name. Similar Island Cup profile.

Gracias... now find me samples :)

-bry
I just moved to Kona about 3 months ago. I have tried one kind of Ka'u, that is one companies offering. I don't think it was like Kona though. To me it was more complex but it was hard to evaluate because it tasted like the roast was a little underdeveloped. Vegetal noted and lemon. I think this coffee has a lot of potential and to be honest Ka'u has the advantage of being a cheaper place to grow coffee which attracts younger more progressive farmers.
If anyone is on their way out here let me know. After you hit up JN for a Ka'u farm tour I can show you our farm in Kona and you can judge for yourself.
PS The underdeveloped roast was NOT from JN but I don't want to say who it was from, unless someone asks.
I just noticed you wanted a comparison to other coffee's. I would say Guatemala is similar. Highland Guat, more like Huehue, less like Coban.
Sounds like there are at least a couple of parties willing to evaluate free samples and post their observations :)
Thank you all for your replies. It's always nice to hear from the experts in the industry. We are always looking to improve in our farming/processing methods and taste so your feedback is greatly appreciated. If you would like a sample please email me your address at joann@kaucoffeeonline.com. I would love to hear your feedback once you try it. Mahalo.
We are having our second annual Ka'u Coffee Festival next weekend in Pahala, Hawaii. It would be a great chance to visit the different farms and taste all the different coffees Ka'u has to offer. If anyone is in the area make sure to stop by at our booth.

JN Coffee Farms
Aloha,
If requesting samples, please let me know if you are looking for green beans or roasted. If roasted specify your preferences (medium or dark roast).

Mahalo,
JN Coffee Farms

JN Coffee Farms said:
Thank you all for your replies. It's always nice to hear from the experts in the industry. We are always looking to improve in our farming/processing methods and taste so your feedback is greatly appreciated. If you would like a sample please email me your address at joann@kaucoffeeonline.com. I would love to hear your feedback once you try it. Mahalo.
Ka'u coffee tastes delicious! So far I tasted about 5 different ones, and none had flaws. Only thing holding Ka'u coffee back from giving Kona coffees a run for their money is the lack of awareness. Kona coffee has built its fame over 120+ years with less competition, while Ka'u basically has to start from scratch in a crowded market of specialty coffees. That's a burden not easily to overcome. Sadly, once it reaches the higher awareness stage, 10% Ka'u Blends ( plus 90% inferior foreign coffees) and fakes will pop up on the store shelves and undermine the farmers efforts.

Right now nobody does it, so there's time enough for the Ka'u farmers to unite and trademark a common name for the region with the USPTO (US Patent & Trademark Office). "Ka'u" will not get the needed legal protection from the Hawaii State like Kona coffee or Hawaii Macnuts don't get. So every marketing dollar you Ka'u coffee folks put in now and in the next years for awareness, will be plundered for a quick buck right when it becomes valuable. The 5 local processors, who blocked with a threat of lawsuits the name "Kona coffee" to be trademarked for the region in the 1990's, are either in jail, tether on bankruptcy, or are busy to keep us Kona farmers in check. I say go for it now, before somebody trademarks names like e.g. Ka'u Classic , Royal Ka'u Coffee, Ka'u Coffee Company
Finally got around to roasting and cupping the sample that you sent us (Myself and Mike McGinness, Nor'West Coffee).

Took the roast "low and slow" to 431, moving 13F/min (not including first 4 mins of full heat) until 395, then cutting heat and coasting into first. Full heat through first until 421 then coasted until 431. Total roast time 15:45 on a CCR Hottop.

Rested 3 days, cupped it this morning.

Cupping scores:
Aroma- 3.4
Fragrance- 3.3
Acidity- 6.9
Body- 7.2
Flavor- 7.1
Finish- 7.4
Total- 85.4

Notes:
Fragrance was very pleasant, presenting ripe strawberries and buttermilk cream right up front. These nuances carried through into the aroma, with the addition of something that was floating between potpourri and medicinal. The medicinal tinge wasn't strong enough for me to knock points, just something I caught on the break. Acidity wasn't high, but there was a quick, dry snap. Body was pleasantly light. Flavors carried through just as the aroma presented them, but without the medicinal twang and with the addition of a very nice hazelnut or macadamia nut or "something" nut (never did put my finger on it). The finish was mild and clean with a milk chocolate note sneaking in right at the end. Overall, one of the better "island profile" coffees I have had to date.

Nice work on the prep. Your dedication comes through in the cup.

-bry

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