buy kona coffee

Buy Kona Coffee Online

Where to Buy Kona Coffee Online

When I give samples of kona coffee to my friends, one of the first things they ask me is: “where can I get more of this stuff?” While you can purchase kona coffee pretty easily through mega-merchants like Amazon, there’s a couple simple tips to make sure you get the freshest coffee possible when you’re ordering it online. For one, ordering from the farms is the easiest way to make sure you get fresh coffee, although it’s not a guarantee. Koa farms (featured below) states that they will only roast your coffee after you order it.
If you want to order from Amazon.com (to take advantage of shipping perks), make sure the coffee you order says ‘farm direct’. Blue Horse, for example, takes orders through Amazon but ships the coffee directly to you (so your coffee isn’t sitting in a warehouse somewhere).

Make Sure you Buy 100% Kona Coffee

When shopping for kona coffee, make sure the package says 100% kona coffee. If a coffee says ‘kona blend’, it usually means it has less than 10% actual kona beans, with the other 90% made up of inferior-quality beans. Safeway recently settled a lawsuit involving ‘kona blend’, but there currently is no legal protections for coffee farmers at the moment. Until that happens, one thing we can do to ensure that our favorite coffee keeps thriving is to make sure we only buy coffee clearly labeled 100% Kona.

These resources are places with proven track records where you can make sure you will get high quality, freshly-roasted coffee (or unroasted green beans if that’s your preference).


1. Koa Coffee Company

buy kona coffee online
Koa coffee plantation is one of the largest farms in the Kona Coffee region and they have an excellent reputation for freshness. We’ve already declared their Kona Estate Medium Roast to be the ‘best kona coffee’. Their coffee is made up of the three highest grades of kona coffee: extra-fancy, fancy and peaberry. In response to the crop shortage this year, Koa has been purchasing high-grade coffee from smaller farms this year in order to meet demand. This means that Koa is a no-brained to be in stock even through this year of kona coffee scarcity.

The coffee you order is roasted the day of (if you order early in the day) and sent out early the next day. Which means that if you order your coffee on a Monday, it will likely be at your door Thursday afternoon.

Kona Coffee


2. Starbucks Store Online

starbucks reserve kau coffee

A lot of people have strong feelings about how Starbucks roasts their coffee. But this Ka’u coffee is part of their ‘Starbucks Reserve’ collection, which uses different roasting methods based on the type of coffee and the flavors they are trying to bring out.
For the Ka’u coffee, they have created a truly sweet, delicious coffee. The coconut and caramelly notes will instantly transport you back to the Hawaiian islands. Pair this with any coconut or nutty-flavored pastry for a truly delicious experience.

Find the Best Price:

Starbucks Store Online

$24.95

View Store
 
 


3. Blue Horse Kona Coffee

where to buy kona coffee
Blue Horse thankfully makes their coffee available on Amazon.com, so you can take advantage of their numerous shipping options. The coffee you order is farm-direct however, so you can make sure that you’re still getting the freshest coffee possible. Blue Horse’s dark roast is a milk-chocolately flavored coffee that is almost as smooth as Koa coffee’s Estate roast.
Blue Horse also offers lots of options for their coffee: you can order it unroasted, in bulk, peaberry, etc. Pretty much any way you like it!

Find the Best Price:

Amazon

$29.95

View Store
 
 

There you have it! Be sure to check out our Kona Coffee Shop, where you can choose from hundreds of 100% Kona coffees. You can shop for a particular type of coffee (i.e. peaberry kona), by grade of coffee (i.e. Extra-Fancy, Fancy) and you can even search by Hawaiian Island.

Supply Shortage

Due to a shortage in teh supply of kona coffee this year, larger coffee farms have been purchasing coffee from smaller farms. This means that a lot of the smaller farms have already sold out of their coffee this year, whereas larger farms will be more likely to still be in stock.

More Sources of High Quality Kona Coffee:


Greenwell Farms

The Greenwell family history almost goes as far back as the history of kona coffee itself. Nowadays Greenwell Farms makes a few outstanding premium coffees. What they are most known for, however, is their coffee farm tours. If you’re ever in Kona I highly recommend going on a tour of their farm. You’ll learn everything you ever wanted to know about how to grow coffee. Plus you’ll get to taste some freshly roasted coffee yourself. Mmmm…I think I need to go back!

Click here to visit Greenwell Farms’ website.

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Best Burr Coffee Grinders

Best Burr Coffee Grinders

Best Burr Coffee Grinders

When it comes to improving the quality of your morning cup of coffee, it’s hard to overstate how important your grinder is to your finished cup of coffee. To understand that, we have to think about the overall goal when we are making coffee: to extract as much flavor from the coffee as you can.

Coffee and wine are very similar, in that geography and processing methods affect flavor. But unlike wine, coffee depends on the consumer at home to brew the coffee. And that is where most of the coffee’s flavor is usually lost.
How recently your coffee was roasted won’t make much of a difference if you aren’t grinding correctly. And the simplest and most significant change you can make is to start using a burr coffee grinder.

If you want to learn more about how coffee grinds work, check out our ultimate guide on how to grind coffee.

How Burr Grinders Work:

Whereas blade grinders use blades that violently tear apart the coffee beans, burr grinders use two plates, or ‘burrs’, that close in on the beans and ‘pulverize’ them. The coffee grinds from burr grinders are superior for two reasons:

  1. Uniform Grinds – the coffee particles from blade grinders are a mixture of too large (flavor-containing particles aren’t released), medium-sized and too small (flavor particles are eviscerated by the grinder).
  2. Flavor-Containing Oils Survive – the natural oils that are contained within coffee beans are mostly destroyed by blade grinders. Here the oils are released and stay with the coffee grinds.


1. Baratza Encore Conical Burr Grinder

baratza encore burr coffee grinder

The Baratza Encore wins out for its combination of versatility and budget-friendliness. David LaTourell of Intelligentsia recommends the Baratza Virtuoso coffee grinder for home use, but the Encore offers a comparable quality of grinds while costing about $100 less. The Encore has a high torque motor that, in combination with electronic speed reduction, grinds the coffee slowly to reduce any heat build-up and noise. It has over 40 settings, ranging from 250-1200 microns. It’s also very easy to use over time. You can easily remove the burrs for cleaning, and the anti-static technology keeps coffee grind build-up at bay. This is a great solution for the home or even a small coffee shop.

What Grind Setting Should I Use?

Most burr coffee grinders will let you choose the grind settings for your coffee. However, some of the automatic grinders want you to set their grind settings by ‘microns’. The size of coffee particles is measured in microns. So for French Press, for example, you will want larger coffee grinds (900 microns), and for espresso you’ll want a lower setting (about 300 microns).

You can use this chart as a reference:

  • Turkish – 100 Microns
  • Espresso – 300 Microns
  • Paper Filter (i.e. cone-shaped coffee-makers) – 500 Microns
  • Metal Filter (i.e. flat-bottom coffee makers) – 700 Microns
  • Percolator – 800 Microns
  • French Press/Botum – 900 Microns


2. Capresso 560 Conical Burr Grinder

capresso 560 conical burr coffee grinder

This is Capresso’s commercial grade grinder. It has the sturdiest build quality of all the grinders on this list. The most impressive feature is how there’s no vibration when it’s grinding coffee. Most grinders will make your kitchen counter vibrate at least a little. The grind settings are also very wide, with its extra-fine setting even getting down to 150 microns. You can set a timer to grind anywhere from 5-60 seconds (depending on the volume of coffee). The only problem is that there is no on/off switch like in the Encore. Instead the grinder works on a timer.


3. Espressione Professional Concial Burr Coffee Grinder

espressione professional conical burr coffee grinder

This grinder, along with the Baratza Encore, are both quiet as a mouse when they are working. The Espressione also has a handy auto shut off feature, so it turns itself off when it’s done grinding the coffee. The only drawback is that you’ll have to keep yourself from forgetting that there is coffee in there (which I did) after it’s done working. It’s also really small and compact, so it doesn’t take up much space on your counter. The major drawback is the cleaning needed. There’s a large learning curve when it comes to cleaning the burrs.


4. Bodum Bistro Burr Coffee Grinder

Bodum Bistro Burr Coffee Grinder

Bodum has made a burr coffee grinder that is both incredibly easy to use, but be warned: this is for home use only. Bodum advises you to wait 5 minutes in between grinding sessions to keep the motor from overheating. This is definitely not for commercial use (unlike the grinders ranked higher than this one). The grinder does have some definite strengths that make it a great choice for a home grinder. Bodum made the tray out out borosilicate glass instead of plastic, which keeps the coffee particles from flying around and clinging to the tray. This makes clean-up and maintenance a breeze. The build quality is top-notch. In short, it’s a great home-use coffee grinder. If Bodum had used a more efficient motor, it might be a great choice for cafes as well.


5. Cuisinart DBM-8 Supreme Burr Coffee Grinder

cuisinart supreme burr coffee grinder

This grinder works by turning a dial on the bottom of the hopper. It goes from fine to extra-coarse (sorry, Turkish coffee lovers!). This grinder doesn’t have any stand out features, it just does everything well. It’s compact, sleek looking, works quietly, and is easy to use. The downside is that the grinds tray is made of plastic, which as we know is bad for cling. You can also set the amount of grinds and the Cuisinart will shut off after the amount specified is ground. I never used this feature, since I would only use the desired amount of coffee beans into the hopper in the first place. Dumping a set amount of beans into the hopper for days at a time is a recipe for stale coffee.


6. Mr. Coffee Automatic Burr Mill Coffee Grinder

mr.coffee burr mill coffee grinder

Mr.Coffee’s Burr Mill grinder is a very convenient, easy to use grinder. Where Mr.Coffee loses points is static. The finished coffee grinds seem to defy gravity as I pulled the tray out, and as a result it was a little more difficult to clean. The quality of the coffee grinds was above average, however the burr grinder seemed incapable of producing true espresso coffee grinds. I set it to maximum fine grind and the result resembled cone filter drip coffee rather than espresso roast. If you’re only going to use the grinds for a drip coffee maker or french press, then the grinder will work just fine. It’s also very budget friendly. Since it comes in under $50, it’s understandable that it can’t live up to a Baratza grinder.


7. Krups GVX Burr Coffee Grinder

krups burr coffee grinder

This is a nice looking coffee grinder. It’s one of those machines that you’ll want to leave on the kitchen counter just to show it off. Over time, though, the clear grinds tray won’t look nice and clean. Making the tray tinted in future models would go a long way towards aesthetics.
But forget about how it looks, how does it grind? The big drawback to this grinder is the static. Which means that the burrs will need to be cleaned quite frequently. The coffee grinds themselves were quality. The espresso was just as fine as it should be. The coffee grinds for french press seemed a bit smaller than they should be, but after brewing up a pot it didn’t make a difference in taste at all. Overall a pretty looking machine that will grind your coffee (albeit loudly for a burr grinder).

That’s it! Any burr grinders I forgot to mention? Let me know your thoughts and suggestions for burr grinders to try out.

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