Saturday, March 10, 2018

Aloha Pricing - "when they go high, we go low"

I have probably mentioned before that things cost a lot in Kauai. I had pretty much assumed that this was the way it was going to be with the exception of COSTCO - a foot long hot dog on a soft bun and a soda for $1.50. I have learned that products you are known for are often overpriced. I have no idea what the going price is for coconuts, but I do know coffee. I have consumed coffee pretty much everywhere they speak English and a few places they don't.

My wife knows the prices of things she buys at grocery stores and can recognize good deals even at expensive groceries. I know the price of brewed coffee. The coffee at one of my favorite coffee spots (Fresh Start Coffee Roasters) is $1.75 for a medium (25 cents for a self-poured refill). The Sparrow, one of the two coffee shops I can find on my own in Minneapolis, is $2.50 and I have always been afraid to ask for a refill because they will likely charge me the same for the second cup.

I understand that they grow coffee here and all that. They are probably very proud of their crops and status as the #1 coffee producer in the U.S. Where else would you grow coffee in the U.S.? Anyway, I pay $4 or so for coffee (straight) and since the price of a latte is about the same, I usually have a latte.

The exception is the Koala Mill Ice Cream and Coffee shop. This shop has what they describe as "Aloha Coffee Pricing".

I hope you can see the prices. One dollar and a quarter for a small coffee (with coffee from the largest coffee farm/plantation in the country) and a latte (small) for less than two dollars. In addition, they prepare your coffee using the pour-over technique. You pay extra for coffee prepared in this manner elsewhere and the baristas at a Starbucks would likely just stare at you if you asked for a pour over. We used to use this technique when camping (a cheap funnel from Target holds a filter and you dump hot water over the ground coffee). Making coffee in this manner must have discovered by the elite. You pay for the show. You can tell if the barista knows. You slowly pour the hot water over the coffee first just a little at first to wake the coffee up. After a pause, you continue slowing rotating the hot water source over the grounds. All of this for under $2.

Mahalo, Koala coffee place. I left an extra quarter in the tip jar for the barista  

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