Do you prefer your tongue-tingling, de-stressing ‘awa drink in the form of a sludgy, brown liquid, or as a lime-flavored Jell-O shot? At Kapahulu Kafé, Daren Kimura serves both. His ‘awa bar, which opened last July, sits in the same location as the previous ‘awa bar, Hale Noa. With several varieties of ‘awa available, Kimura satisfies the palates of discerning ‘awa drinkers, while his Jell-O and cream soda concoctions draw in new fans.
While the atmosphere is decidedly less traditional than that of the former bar, with free wireless Internet, a food menu and bright lighting, Kimura isn’t abandoning the culture behind the ceremonial drink. The dimly lit back room is available for small groups to enjoy ‘awa in the traditional way, sitting in a circle on the floor.
It takes guts to open a brick-and-mortar bookstore in the days of instant online gratification, but in da Shop, local publisher Bess Press has found a way to allow fickle/loyal readers to have their cake and eat it, too.