The Olive Tree

“That is more confidential than anything else,” says Olive Tree Café’s Savas Mojarrad when I ask him his age. “People think I am about 60. Nobody knows my age. I have a friend—Maurice Grasso (former owner of La Gelateria)—for his 80th birthday, he had a big celebration. I said, ‘Stupid Italian, you don’t announce your age when you’re that old. What kind of chance do you have to meet a woman after this?’”

Cafe Kaila

It took five years for Café Kaila owner Chrissie Kaila Castillo to let go of control. Sort of.

“It’s gotten a lot better,” she says. “I think I’ve been able to take a little step back and not do everything myself. I can let somebody else cut the potatoes today. It’s OK if they’re not all square. I let someone else do the shopping, but [say] ‘You have to make sure you dig through the piles and get only the good bacon.’ I was really anal. Super bad.”

The Everything Guide to Coffee in Hawaii

We came down the mountain from Cloud Rest, a region of Ka‘u where the clouds hang low and a soft rain falls every afternoon. Miguel Meza of Rusty’s Hawaiian Coffee had invited me over for a cup of coffee on the lānai. The first thing I noticed was the scale—a tool of the trade for any serious barista, but Meza’s was snow-white and a dead ringer for an Apple TV. It connected wirelessly to his iPhone, and, as he poured water through the coffee grinds, it displayed and measured—in real time—the volume and rate of water poured. With the app, he could also track the coffee grind size, the water temperature and the brew time, and share it with the online community of coffee aficionados.

I had entered the full-coffee-geek zone.

Sun Noodle’s Ever Expanding Universe

It’s as if the noodles from Sun Noodle have a life of their own.

In 1982, the first batch emerged from a Kalihi warehouse. Three decades later, Sun Noodle makes enough noodles each week to circle the world at the equator. First, the noodles stretched from Hawaii across the Pacific to Los Angeles, unspooled from there to New York and now are crossing another ocean to entice Europe. Soon, there may be a day when the sun never sets on Sun Noodle.