Sharon J. Lawrence
Sharon J. Lawrence
Have you ever been to Paradise? Hawaii is often described as paradise and one of the most beautiful places on earth. Well, I have to agree! A recent trip there convinced me that there is Paradise on Earth. From sandy beaches lined with emerald-blue water and palm trees under serene skies to rugged black volcanoes that continue to reshape the earth, the Hawaiian Islands teem with diversity, beauty and poise. Even beyond this, the islands are flourished with a variety of plants, animals and ethnicities. While God’s beauty is everywhere, I must say there is an extra special “something” in Hawaii. It is breath taking! Our Luau Cruise, swap meets, Farmer’s Markets and espresso trips made for an extra special visit to Paradise. Below you will find brief descriptions of our espresso trips in Honolulu.
ChadLou’s is a very comfy coffee and tea lounge. It is very rustic and has adequate seating, books and chess tables. Our barista Natalia was very professional and clearly enjoyed her craft. She even creates what I call “ cup art.” Natalia and other staff members draw on coffee cups, creating the most beautiful pictures and designs. These cups are on display throughout the store and make for very interesting conversation (see picture above). We had some delicious drinks including fresh cucumber water and pastries at Chadlou’s. My husband had a Kona Affagato (pictured above)! Yummy!!! I had the Honu Latte. This is a decadent drink infused with Caramel and Mac Nut. Delish!!! Our son had Iced Green Tea and our girls enjoyed M&M cookies and Hawaiian Mud Pie Ice cream. My husband also had a “roadie”: ice tea infused with island fruits and lightly sweetened. We all enjoyed this spot very much. I wished I had stopped back by again before returning to the Main Land! If you are ever in Honolulu, give them a visit. www.chadlous.com By the way….the price was right too.
As some of my readers know, I do not blog about “Chain” Coffee Houses. I had no idea that Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf was a chain until we came back to the Main Land. So, in a sense I am going against my rule. However, after a bit of research I see now why they were appealing to me. The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Company is the largest, privately held coffee and tea retailer in the United States. According to their website, they carefully hand craft their drinks and only select their beans and tea leaves from privately owned coffee bean farms and estates. They are so picky about bean selection that they only choose the top one percent of Arabica beans.
Conversely, an early morning stroll with my two little girls lead me to this place. It was an outdoor coffee stand with obviously something to offer because the line was pretty long. The girls and I decided to stop by anyway. As we approached the counter it became evident to me that people where waiting for good reason. They serve an array of coffee and espresso drinks, smoothies, breakfast sandwiches, oatmeal, assorted muffins and pastries. I enjoyed the Dark Chocolate Iced Latte. Very smooth and refreshing! My oldest daughter, Dia had the Pure Chocolate Smoothie. My youngest daughter, Dayley enjoyed a Strawberry Vanilla Mango Smoothie. Now her drink was Delish! We shared a Turkey and Swiss Croissant and a Morning Glory muffin. Both were very fresh and tasty. Go ahead. Check them out and see for your self. http://www.coffeebean.com/
From the moment I walked into the Blue Tree Café, I knew I was in for a treat! Blue Tree is definitely for the “green” living and health conscience person. The décor is modern with in-door and out-door seating. All of the furniture and equipment are from recycled material. Their menu is extensive: offering coffees, teas, smoothies, juices, raw oats, salads, pastries, etc. All food items (with the exceptions of pastries) are raw. They make their own nut milks and cold press all of their juices. They also use organic ingredients!! One of their mottos: “It’s Life Changing” is so fitting. I felt “changed” just walking in the door. This place just makes you want to put the “right” foods in your temple.
I had and Iced Blue Tree Latte: Honey, house made almond milk, cinnamon and espresso. It was pretty good but not my favorite. My husband had the same beverage made hot. He did not like his at all. He also had the Almond Dream Smoothie. This drink went over a bit better than his latte did. Our kids had the following: Raw Oats bowl, Acai Bowl, House made Almond Milk, Very Verde Smoothie, Banana Bread Muffin, Zucchini Bread Muffin with cashew cream icing and a Blueberry Scone. All were very good. I know, because I tasted everyone’s food. LOL! My absolute favorite was the Acai Bowl. Topped with fresh bananas and crunchy granola, it was incredibly delicious!
This espresso trip was great but not because of the coffee drinks we had. They were pretty average in my opinion. Maybe on another trip we will try a different coffee drink. On the other hand, the food was really good and healthful. The Blue Tree Café is not easy on the wallet though. The total bill was a little over $50.00!!!!! Pretty pricey. Right? Well, do not let that deter you. Give them a try if you are ever in Honolulu. www.bluetreejuice.com Also, park in the parking structure. They will validate your parking.
Glazer’s is a cool, comfy and hipster coffee house. With a relaxing, “living room” like feel. It is a great place to meet friends or coffice. They also have unique photography on the walls, antique cameras and Barista magazines. Glazer’s is independently owned. They serves organic, shade grown, and fair trade coffee. Prepared in unique Seattle tradition, Glazer’s espresso drinks have a flawless creamy texture. The baristas are professional yet serious about the drinks they serve. You may even get some cool coffee art like we did on our visit (see our lattes above). We had Carmel Lattes and Blue Hawaiian Italian Sodas. The drinks were very good. The Carmel Latte was exceptional. It had a very bold flavor, aroma and crema. If you are planning a trip Honolulu, put this place on your bucket list. You will enjoy the atmosphere and your cup of Joe. http://www.glazerscoffee.com/
Island Brew is a coffee houses that focuses on fresh, organic and sustainable coffee, tea and other food products. They offer a wide variety of drinks, foods and pastries. I had the pleasure of enjoying a Malabar Latte. This is an espresso drink made with Mocha Cream, Caramel and Creme de Cacao. It was really very good. One of the most interesting things I noticed about this house is the method they use for brewing their cold coffee drinks. The barrista explained that it takes up to 12 hours to steep the coffee grounds for their cold coffee. This process only produces a small picture of coffee. Wow! I guess good things really do come to those who wait. Island Brew has a warm and cozy atmosphere with indoor and outdoor seating. Check them out on your next trip to Hawaii. http://www.islandbrewcoffeehouse.com/index.html
A visit to the Pealridge Farmers Market lead us to Nic’s Island Coffee. Nicole Symthe is the proprietor of this neat coffee stand. She was very personable and offered really great customer service. Nic serves up a good cup of iced coconut coffee. N.I.C. travels to various Farmer’s Markets around Honolulu. Follow her on Instagram at: https://instagram.com/nicsislandcoffee/
Located on the North Shore of Oahu Hawaii the Green World Coffee Farm provides a very unique coffee experience. Visitors can enjoy a self-guided tour on the 7-acre farm. There you will find approximately 2000 Arabica Coffee Trees. They roast beans everyday and offer a wide variety of coffee beans from other local farms around Hawaii. Customers can also sample many different types of coffee, teas, and chocolate covered coffee beans. Green World also has a coffee bar where they serve lattes, smoothies, shakes and pastries. Check them out on your next trip to Hawaii:)
(This post is dedicated to my loving son David. You showed us a great time in Honolulu! We love and miss you very much!!!!)