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Posts Tagged ‘Waialua Cacao’

Winter Harvest 2013

Monday, December 16th, 2013

Waialua Coffee Flowering Mt. Ka'ala

As we approach the Winter Solstice signaling the end of another year and harvest season, I wanted to take a moment to review some of the harvest progress through the still lifes that capture our work here at Waialua Estate.

new-crop-cherry-8-30For us, the Coffee Harvest officially commences the beginning of October.

Korvan HarvesterAlthough there are cherries ripening on the trees from as early as mid-August, we need to be patient and wait for a heavy flush as the Waialua operation uses a Mechanical HarvestingKorvan mechanical harvester, and our goal is to let the coffee both ripen and turn to raisin in order to minimize the unripe fruit from being taken.

Selective Hand PickingHowever, this year, I wanted to try something a little different and work with the crew to improve our selective hand picking techniques as well as to do  some dry natural process micro lots for a couple micro roasters looking for something special.  So from mid to late September we harvested several hundred lbs of ripe red to purple cherry, carefully sundried these and have been resting the batch before milling. Ripe Cherry Likely, I will roast and cup these around Christmas to see what we have.  Other micro lot preparations include a bit of pulp natural honey process, and a first time Kenya process at the suggestion of our friends at Rusty’s.  Looking forward to cupping those too.

Caretakers of Coffee

The main harvest has been going slow and steady with well developed fruit yielding large beans with some nice character.  We did a cupping session with Fred and crew at Downtown Coffee, and another with Shawn and friends at his kitchen laboratory in Cupping with Fred at Downtown CoffeeKaimuki.  Both occasions had positive results with raised eyebrows of appreciation at the unexpected strawberry jammy character of the Natural Process and the pleasingly sweet citric acidity in the Washed Process.  Signs of good things to come for the 2013 Harvest!

Winter HarvestOn the other side of farm, the Winter Cacao crop has also been productive showing that the Spring and Summer pruning and maintenance are making a difference.  We have seen good yield and pod development, healthy leafy trees, strong flowering and a broadkeiki cacao fruit set with positive signs for the Spring / Summer harvest.  The keiki cacao trees are also coming along nicely and we have planted some 2500 new trees this year in both the Waialua and Helemano orchards. Give it 2-3 years and we will see the fruits of these labors in higher yields which means more chocolate!

Mr. Cacao

Drying cocoa bean winter harvest

It has been a productive year, the elements were in our favor with enough sunshine and rain to keep the trees healthy and happy and the workers safe .  We are thankful for this and for the support of friends and family and all the people who believe in what we are doing at Waialua Estate.  And so, in these final days of December, we take a moment to catch our breath for the final push, to reflect on our good fortune and wish you all Happy Holidays,  Merry Christmas and Best wishes for the coming year.  Aloha from Waialua

Derek Lanter

Hawaii Cacao Festival: The Main Event

Tuesday, February 9th, 2010

It was a big beautiful day at the first annual Hawaii Cacao Festival this past Sunday January 31st at the Haleiwa Farmers’ Market on the North Shore of Oahu.  A great turn out of 5000 market goers came to share in the festivities including a cacao orchard tour,  recipe contest with over 40 entries  (winning entries are posted at the end of the blog) and delicious samples of chocolate inspired culinary creations by local chefs, chocolatiers and of course Waialua Estate Chocolate.

Special thank yous to Pamela Boyar and Annie Suite of Haleiwa Farmers’ Market for their patience, support and get it done abilities.  To Melanie Boudar, the chocolatier of Sweet Paradise Chocolate for her guidance, use of the chocolate fountains, and much assistance in getting it together.  Many thank yous to 21 degrees restaurant and Palm Terrace at Turtle Bay Resort, Alan Wong’s Restaurant and Town Restaurant for providing plentiful samples of sweet and savory delicacies for everyones tasting pleasure.

Thank you esteemed panel of judges, and Skip Bittenbender of CTAHR for demonstration of making chocolate and information on how to grow cacao.

And of course a BIG MAHALO to the Waialua Estate volunteer crew including Mike Conway and Marian Chun, as well as my own home team Rebecca, Kaoru and Akari Powell,  Emily and Cassidy Lanter.  I couldn’t have done it without all the help and support you all gave to pull this off.   Let’s do it again next year!

Below is an excerpt for the Haleiwa Farmers Market Newsletter with photos and more on the the event.  Thanks Annie Suite for fantastic photos of fabulous food creations and happy faces.

Haleiwa Farmers' Market

Big Mahalos to all 5000 of you who joined us for the fun and delicious treats this past Sunday at the 1st Annual Cacao Festival! And big Mahalos to Alan Wong’s Restaurant, Ed Kenney & Town Restaurant, John Armstong, Ben Tabious & 21° N at Turtle Bay, Melanie Boudar from Sweet Paradise Chocolates, Ola Loa Wellness, Skip Bittenbender from CTHAR and especially Derek Lanter & Mike Conway from Dole Diversified Agriculture Waialua Estate Cacao!

Ola Loa Wellness, Alan Wongs, John Armstrong, Town, Melanie BoudarOur beautiful day started with a traditional blessing, before our guests wandered through the many booths filled with our usual farmers market offerings of the freshest locally grown fruits and vegetables and our special Cacao offerings… including Chocolate Fountains showering Waialua Estate Dark & Milk Chocolates, samples from our guest chefs, and a tent full of submissions to the Chocolate Recipe contest, where Vice Speaker Michael Magaoay, Howard Dicus (radio & TV personality… and his lovely wife!), Melanie Boudar (Sweet Paradise Chocolateir), Martha Cheng (Freelance Food Writer) and David Calciero (Chef de Cuisine for Town Restaurant) tasted their way through the entries and selected our prize winners.

Moki, Waialua Estate Cacao, volunteers

Ben Tabious Grand Prize Winner

Grand Prize Winner Ben Tabious and his
Chocolate Cake with Ginger Ganache and Caramelized Bananas! Wow!

choclate contest winners

Winners in the Confections Category: 1st Place Noella Montiero (Chocolate Orange Panna Cotta & Waialua Estate Iced Hot Chocolate); 2nd Place Richard Samiley (Madras Curry Truffle); 3rd Place Patti Gallagher Jones (Malie Kai Cherry Bark). Winners in the Savory Category: 1st Place Lan Thai (Crab Cake Citrus Salad with Waialua Dark Chocolate); 2nd Place: Christine Watanabe (Waialua Estate Chocolate with Cacao Nibs Panko Seared Beef with Waialua Chocolate/pozu jus); 3rd Place Arlene Boyd (Auntie Arleen’s Oahu Chicken Cacao) Winners in the Baked Sweet Category: 1st Place Sabrina St. Martin Chocolate Banana Nut Bread with Homemade Chocolate Butter. 2nd Place: William W. Kanour, Jr. (Lucky You Live in Hawaii Chocolate Cake); 3rd Place Monique Vander Stroom (Chocolate Cream Cheese Shortbread Mini’s with Waialua Chocolate dipped Sea Asparagus)

North Shore Farm Tour

Monday, October 12th, 2009

Pam Boyar, North Shore Farm Tour, Waialua Coffee

Pam Boyar, North Shore Farm Tour, Waialua Coffee

Back in mid-September, Haleiwa Farmers Market managers Pam Boyar and Annie Suite

Pam inspects the coffee

Pam inspects the coffee

organized one of several North Shore Farm Tours, showcasing some of the farms, fruits, vegetables and other produce being raised in the Waialua district of Oahu.

A small group of 30 people visited several farms including Dole Pineapple, Waialua Estate Coffee and Cacao,  Twin Bridges Farm and North Shore Cattle Company for a sampling of the diversified agriculture happening in the area.

Mike talks about Waialua Cacao North Shore Farm Tour

Mike talks about Waialua Cacao North Shore Farm Tour

Participants were able to meet and talk with the farmers, learn about the operation and taste the fruits of their labors.

Mike Conway provided background on Dole’s Pineapple operation and Derek Lanter talked about Waialua Coffee and Chocolate while Mike presented the cacao orchard.

Events like these farm tours are one of the ways Waialua Estate is doing outreach and teaching the community about coffee and cacao production on Oahu.  With one small step at a time our coffee and chocolate is being discovered, appreciated and talked about.

We appreciate everybody’s interest and support and look forward to more tours as we grow and organize our operation.  coffee-field-cafe

Cacao Tour with Les Dames d’Escoffier Hawaii

Thursday, August 6th, 2009

Les Dames d'Escoffier in the Waialua Cacao Orchard

Les Dames d'Escoffier in the Waialua Cacao Orchard

Mike and Derek hosted a special tasting of  Waialua Coffee and Chocolate and a tour of the cacao orchard for some 20  professional business women from Les Dames d’Escoffier Hawaii branch.  Many of those who attended are involved in the Honolulu culinary community as chefs, teachers, managers and owners of food service companies and other fine restaurants and businesses in Hawaii.

What is Les Dames d’Escoffier?  Here is a brief description from the website:

Les Dames d’Escoffier is the only organization of its kind: a world wide philanthropic society of professional women leaders in the fields of food, fine beverage and hospitality. The invitation-only membership, composed of 27 individual chapters across the United States and Canada, is highly diversified and reflects the multifaceted fields of contemporary gastronomy and hospitality.

Waialua Chocolate Tasting

Waialua Chocolate Tasting

Tasting chocolate and coffee with this group was a pleasure. We look forward to working with them through educational programs in the culinary schools,  in their restaurants with our Hawaiian coffee and chocolate and with special events in the community.  Aloha, Derek

Mike gives a pointer on Waialua Cacao

Mike gives a pointer on Waialua Cacao

Les Dames tasting Waialua Estate Chocolate

Les Dames tasting Waialua Estate Chocolate Bon Appetite!

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