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Spicy Ninja Sauce: Fire of the Aloha Spirit

By Dagny Brand “Infused with the fire of the aloha spirit,” Spicy Ninja Sauce is on a mission to help Hawaii’s farmers and to bring new meaning to “made in Hawaii,” all while creating bold and delicious Hawaii-inspired hot sauces. Started with $200 and three peppers, as founder Christopher Bornstein explained, Spicy Ninja Sauce now has 20 different creatively-named and crafted vinegar-based hot sauces, all 100% grown, made, and manufactured locally. The company centers around agriculture and...

MetroGrow Hawaii: The Future of Aeroponics

By Dagny Brand An innovative vertical urban farm, MetroGrow Hawaii uses aeroponics to “provide high quality produce for the local restaurant and gourmet markets,” as Founder Kerry Kakazu said. “As we face more climate challenges and reduced resource availability, it will be essential to explore alternative forms of agriculture to ensure our food supply, especially in Hawaii.” Since 2013, MetroGrow has been increasing Hawaii’s food self-sufficiency through new farming technology, and the result...

Traveling Plum: A Classic Hawaii Snack

By Dagny Brand Everyone loves a crackseed snack, and Traveling Plum is using all locally grown fruits to combine this Li Hing Mui treat with a mission to support Hawaii agriculture. “Crackseed that’s local to Hawaii and free of preservatives, food coloring, and aspartame means we’re eating better. It means our children are eating better,” explained Founder Robert Ramshur, who uses natural fermentation and probiotics to make his crackseed and to help with Hawaii’s food security. Traveling Plum...

Beyond Pastry Studio: The Ultimate Baker Experience

By Dagny Brand Beyond Pastry Studio is engaging the community through both the flavors it offers and the experiences it will bring as it grows into a workshop area for developing bakers. Founder Cristina Nishioka is proud to be opening a space where people can come to bake, create, innovate, and collaborate. While she puts the finishing touches on her studio, Nishioka is holding pop-ups with a few of the delicious treats that people can find...

Kō Hana Farms: Hawaiian Sugarcane

By Dagny Brand Heirloom Hawaiian sugarcane once again grows proudly across hundreds of acres on the central and north shores of Oahu. Kō Hana Farms, the sister company of Kō Hana Distillers, cultivates over 30 varieties of kō, or sugarcane. Each cane variety has distinctive coloring, leaf patterns, flavors, and places in local culture. Farm Manager Derek Sheldon said, “It’s humbling to be part of a stewardship project that has allowed these canes to thrive again, and to share and connect...

IL Gelato Hawaii: As Authentic As It Gets!

By Dagny Brand Summer is here, and IL Gelato is making authentic, natural, and award winning gelato and sorbetto for the community! Owner Dirk Koeppenkastrop studied the art of making gelato in Bologna, Italy, and since 2010, he and his wife Nicole Lueker have found multiple ways to provide the delicious creation to Hawaii. “The unique part of IL Gelato is that we do a whole array of things,” said Koeppenkastrop, emphasizing that in addition to selling wholesale and retail gelato and holding...

Grok Coffee: From seed to cup

By Dagny Brand “Grok,” a word founder and owner Dr. Shawn Steiman discovered in Robert Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land, briefly means to understand in fullness or in every aspect. Grok Coffee offers a longer explanation on their website, along with their connection to the word:  “We strive to grok coffee and facilitate the grokking of coffee by people like you.” Offering locally sourced coffee beans in reusable jars and educational opportunities surrounding coffee, Grok Coffee...

Tea Chest Hawaii: Bringing the true local flavor to your teacup

By Dagny Brand “In Hawaii, we grow and process some of the finest tea in the world,” said owner and founder of Tea Chest Hawaii, Byron Goo. Since its opening in 1995, Tea Chest Hawaii has worked with over 30 local farms on five islands to develop a tea industry that complements Hawaii’s reputable coffee industry. Tea Chest Hawaii creates teas whose tastes truly reflect local flavors. “One of the impacts of COVID-19 on our business is we now look at tea not only as a product but as a delivery...

Where to find true Neapolitan pizza in Honolulu

By Dagny BrandPhotography by John Ulep Locally crafted and certified by the Italian government, Brick Fire Tavern’s craft Neapolitan pizzas include the perfect blend of traditional flavors and modern freshness. The “fresh, local, and authentic” restaurant recently moved to Kaimuki, and owner Matthew Resich is “stoked to be part of the great food scene in Kaimuki.” In addition to serving dinner, Brick Fire Tavern is open for an amazing pre-fixe lunch!  The pizza from Brick Fire Tavern is...

Featured Producer: Kahumana Organic Farm

By Dagny Brand Kahumana Organic Farms is not only a sustainable and diverse farm, but it is a larger nonprofit organization working to better the Hawaiian community in many different ways. Kahumana Food Hub, which grew quickly in response to the pandemic, works to promote local agriculture and support backyard farmers, contributing greatly to Hawaii’s food resiliency. “Diversity breeds resiliency, whether it's in the economy, in nature, or in farming,” said Christian Zuckerman, Farm Manager...

The Latest on the Blog

Spicy Ninja Sauce: Fire of the Aloha Spirit

Spicy Ninja Sauce: Fire of the Aloha Spirit

“Infused with the fire of the aloha spirit,” Spicy Ninja Sauce is on a mission to help Hawaii’s farmers and to bring new meaning to “made in Hawaii,” all while creating bold and delicious Hawaii-inspired hot sauces.

MetroGrow Hawaii: The Future of Aeroponics

MetroGrow Hawaii: The Future of Aeroponics

An innovative vertical urban farm, MetroGrow Hawaii uses aeroponics to “provide high quality produce for the local restaurant and gourmet markets,” as Founder Kerry Kakazu said. “As we face more climate challenges and reduced resource availability, it will be essential to explore alternative forms of agriculture to ensure our food supply, especially in Hawaii.”

Traveling Plum: A Classic Hawaii Snack

Traveling Plum: A Classic Hawaii Snack

Everyone loves a crackseed snack, and Traveling Plum is using all locally grown fruits to combine this Li Hing Mui treat with a mission to support Hawaii agriculture. “Crackseed that’s local to Hawaii and free of preservatives, food coloring, and aspartame means we’re eating better. It means our children are eating better,” explained Founder Robert Ramshur.

Beyond Pastry Studio: The Ultimate Baker Experience

Beyond Pastry Studio: The Ultimate Baker Experience

Beyond Pastry Studio is engaging the community through both the flavors it offers and the experiences it will bring as it grows into a workshop area for developing bakers. Founder Cristina Nishioka is proud to be opening a space where people can come to bake, create, innovate, and collaborate.

Kō Hana Farms: Hawaiian Sugarcane

Kō Hana Farms: Hawaiian Sugarcane

Heirloom Hawaiian sugarcane once again grows proudly across hundreds of acres on the central and north shores of Oahu. Kō Hana Farms, the sister company of Kō Hana Distillers, cultivates over 30 varieties of kō, or sugarcane.

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