This is Kona's premier annual cupping competition. Coffee farmers from all over Kona enter their best coffee and anxiously await the results from this prestigious event. If you want to find the best of the best, this cupping is the way to do it.
Kona Classic competition is a large selection of single estate farms. Every farm has subtly different characteristics and a unique personality carefully cultivated by its owner. Farms range from full-time commercial operations to tiny boutiques.
Kona Crown competition is reserved for the larger farms and professional processing mills. All 100% Kona coffee, many of these well known brands are sold to eager connoisseurs all across the world.
Preliminary Round - Wednesday, November 7th, 9am - 2pm. In the preliminary round, judges sample every coffee entered and try to narrow it down to a handful of finalists. It is all excellent coffee so the decision is not easy. The top 15 finalists will be announced as soon as the judged are done.
Finals - Thursday, November 8th, 9am - 2pm. In the final round, the judges have nothing but fantastic coffee to taste so choosing a winner requires a highly trained palate. The final five will be announced at the end of the event and the top three winners will be announced at the Kona Coffee Council Annual Dinner and Auction following the cupping.
Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay. 78-128 Ehukai Street. Follow the signs to the Hualalai room, ask a concierge for directions or simply go to the pool and look for the crowd.
In addition to watching the judges work, visitors are welcome to participate in the many other events. Of course there will be plenty of coffee from the competition to sample. Visitors will be able to meet some of the farmers, participate in coffee tasting demonstrations, learn about life on a coffee farm and all about coffee in general.
10:00 am - Cupping and Tasting Demonstration
What are the judges tasting for? Why do they slurp like that? Can I try it myself? While the judges will be too busy to answer questions, there will be an expert ready to answer your questions. This presentation will explain and demonstrate all the details. You'll even be able to try it yourself, tasting several different coffees to see if you can tell the difference.
11:30 am - Life on a Kona coffee farm
This slide show and presentation will help give visitors an idea of what it is like to grow Kona coffee for a living. Farming isn't always easy but it does have its rewards. From planting to picking, processing and roasting, there is a lot involved with making a perfect cup of coffee.
1:00 pm - Meet the Farmers
While eagerly waiting for the competition to end, Kona coffee farmers tend to gather around and talk shop. Some of the farmers will be wrangled into talking about their individual farms. The public is welcome to stop by, say Hello and ask questions.
Events will be repeated each day.
This is a popular event and space is limited so growers and processors need to submit their entry early. Check out the official rules and enter your coffee before it is too late.