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Daylight Mind Makes List of Top 16 Best Coffee Shops 

September 26, 2018, 8:47 AM HST (Updated September 26, 2018, 8:47 AM)
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Daylight Mind Coffee Company has locations on Waterfront Row in Kailua-Kona along Oneo Bay and at Queens’ Market Place in Waikoloa. Courtesy photo.

Move over Seattle and Portland. The Big Island may be best known for volcanos, waves and waterfalls, but it has another claim to fame that should enjoy just as much attention—coffee.

Hawai‘i is the only U.S. state that grows a significant amount of coffee beans, making it a new Mecca for caffeine lovers.

Daylight Mind Coffee Company, with locations on Waterfront Row in Kailua-Kona along Oneo Bay and at Queens’ Market Place in Waikoloa, has been selected as one of the top 16 coffee shops in the U.S. by Departures, a home and travel website.

Each shop serves the best local varieties sourced from Hawai‘i farms and other coffee regions around the world.

Daylight Mind “coffee pub” opened its doors to the Waikoloa community in 2015, following a successful string of years at its premier Kona restaurant.

Daylight mind coffee. Courtesy photo.

The coffee is fantastic, but it isn’t the only think you can expect to find.

The pubs also feature new plantation-style menus that include brunch items, soup, salads and sandwiches, dinner starters, family-style items and mains, along with world-famous coffee, teas, smoothies and other beverages, including cocktails, beer and wine.

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Brunch includes favorites such as Kona Kine Benedict, Avocado Smash, Loco Moco and a Basic Breakfast.

Portuguese Bean Soup, Saimin Noodles, Warm Spinach Salad, Poke Tacos and the Parker Ranch Cheeseburger are samples from the soup, salad and sandwich menu.

Breads and pastries are baked daily.

Daylight Mind Coffee Company now offers saimin, a plantation-era dish inspired by Japanese ramen, Chinese mein and Filipino pancit.

Dinner starters include, Salt & Garlic Edamame, Avo Fries and Yaki Sticks, among others.

The family-style dinner offerings include Stir-Fried Saimin, Manapua Bao and Hāmākua Tomato Salad.

Main dinner dishes include Hawaiian-style Saimin, Portuguese Bean Soup, Paniolo Chicken, Pūlehu Steak and Lau‘ai Stir Fry.

Lau’ai Stir Fry includes vegetables in a delicious coconut curry with tofu. Available at dinner from 5 to 9 p.m..

LINKS TO THE NEW MENUS

WATERFRONT ROW RESTAURANT

Brunch (8 am – 3 pm) • Happy Hour (3 pm – 5 pm) • Dinner (5 pm – 9 pm)

QUEENS’ MARKETPLACE RESTAURANT

Brunch (7 am – 3 pm) • Happy Hour (3 pm – 5 pm) • Dinner (5 pm – 9:30 pm)

“Coffee is first and everything else is second,” said working co-owner Shawn Steiman. With a Ph.D. in tropical plant and soil science, Steiman, also known as “Dr. Coffee,” is an author, coffee consultant, and teacher in the company’s Coffee School.

Steiman and the Daylight Mind team of young, self-proclaimed “adventurers” works closely with numerous coffee farmers in Kona, Ka‘ū and other areas, as well as O‘ahu and Maui, to find the best coffee for their customers.

“We want people to walk in and feel like something special is happening there,” said Steiman. “The space, the location creates an environment with a kind of vibe or energy that is classy and casual, a place people where enjoy the total experience.”

Daylight Mind’s name was inspired by the Hawaiian word na‘auao, which means learned, enlightened, wisdom, science, or literally, “daylight mind.”

Debra Lordan
Debra Lordan has been a writer and website editor for Pacific Media Group since 2014. She has 39-plus years of experience in the publishing industry, serving in a variety of positions—from photographer, graphic designer and communications director to writer, editor and general manager—at scientific research centers, in book publishing, at a weekly newspaper and various magazines. She is a graduate of the University of Colorado.
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