Biz Wrap: Big Island Coffee Wins Big at Cupping Competition

July 26, 2013, 5:08 PM HST
* Updated July 26, 5:13 PM
Listen to this Article
3 minutes
Loading Audio...

In business news this week, Big Island coffee farms scored big at a coffee cupping competition on Kauai last week.

In a sign that the economy is improving on island, two East Hawaii companies are expanding: Basically Books has increased its retail space, while Y. Hata hired a former chef for its newly created business development manager position.

In other news, Kanu o ka ‘Aina Learning Ohana, a nonprofit educational organization based in Waimea, has received a prestigious architectural award for two of its campus buildings that opened last year.

Big Island Places First in Coffee Cupping Competition

Two Big Island coffee farms won first place in the commercial and creative divisions of the 18th annual Hawaii Coffee Association Conference and 5th Cupping Competition last weekend on Kauai.

Big Island Coffee Roasters was awarded the top spot in the creative category and Mountain Thunder Coffee received top honors in the commercial division at the Kauai Beach Resort on July 20.


Indeed, seven of the top 10 winners in the creative category and all top 10 winners in the commercial division were from the Big Island.


The competition featured 99 premium Hawaiian coffees from eight statewide districts: Hamakua, Hawai‘i, Ka’u, Kaua‘i, Kona, Maui, Moloka‘i and O’ahu. Coffees were judged based on standardized guidelines set by the Specialty Coffee Association of America.

Waimea Hawaiian School Wins Architectural Award

Kanu o ka ‘Aina Learning Ohana has won a prestigious architectural award for its new campus buildings. Photo credit KALO.

Kanu o ka ‘Aina Learning Ohana has won a prestigious architectural award for its new campus buildings. Photo credit KALO.

A native Hawaiian school program in Waimea has won a prestigious architectural award for the design of its classroom facilities.

Kanu o ka ‘Aina Learning Ohana has won the 2013 Jack C. Lipman American Institute of Architects (AIA) Members’ Choice Award.


According to AIA Honolulu, the recipient of this award is recognized as having achieved an outstanding level of design—appropriate to the climate and culture of Hawai‘i, as voted by fellow AIA Honolulu members.

In September 2012, the 9,100 square-foot Halau Pokii, home to preschool classrooms through grade 5, and the 6,200 square-foot Halau Puke, a native library for school and community use, opened their doors.

The buildings occupy a site on Department of Hawaiian Homes Land and are part of the non-profit organization Kanu o ka ‘Aina Learning Ohana’s womb-to-tomb community-based initiatives to support culture-based education and the community.

Boston-based architectural firm Flansburgh Architects assisted in the master planning of the new campus.

Osbourne Joins Y. Hata as Business Development Manager

Y. Hata & Co. Ltd., a Hilo-based food service company, has hired Catherine “Katie” Osbourne as its new business development manager.

A former restaurant manager and executive chef, Osbourne has several years experience in the food service industry.

Osbourne is the first person to serve in this new position, which was created as a result of Y. Hata’s expansion during the past year. 2013 marks the firm’s centennial.

Basically Books Expands in Hilo

Christine Reed, owner of Basically Books, shows the expanded retail area within the Hilo store. Photo credit Basically Books.

Christine Reed, owner of Basically Books, shows the expanded retail area within the Hilo store. Photo credit Basically Books.

Basically Books in downtown Hilo has expanded its retail space.

Co-owner Christine Reed said the store, located on Kamehameha Ave., has taken over space previously occupied by Petroglyph Press.

Petroglyph Press, a printing, copy and fax service, was founded by David’s parents in 1962. It is the parent company of the book store Reed and her husband David opened in 1985.

“The two businesses share the same space and we’ve expanded the retail space of Basically Books into the area occupied by Petroglyph Press,” explained Reed.

“We’re expanding because business is good and we want to more attractively display our Basically Books retail products,” said Reed.


If your business has an opening, closing, promotion, retirement, new product release, special event, award, new location, or expansion, please let us know. Email us at [email protected]


Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay in-the-know with daily or weekly
headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Mahalo for Subscribing


This comments section is a public community forum for the purpose of free expression. Although Big Island Now encourages respectful communication only, some content may be considered offensive. Please view at your own discretion. View Comments