Kona Brewing Co.
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Active Beers: 33
Beer Ratings: 8,773
Beer Avg: 3.79
Taps: / Bottles:
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings: 69 | Reviews: 35 | Display Reviews Only:
4.6/5 rDev +11.1%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $
Just got back from Kona a few weeks ago, and while there managed to spend more than my fair share of time over at Kona Brewing. What a great place in about as perfect of a location you could imagine!
The brewery itself is a much bigger facility that I had imagined, though it shouldn't be a surprise given that everything they keg and ship out around the islands goes out of there. I did figure they'd have a small bottling line for local markets, but it seems everything in bottles in contracted over in Portland. I did manage to see an oak barrel of 2005 Old Blowhole sitting back in the freezer, so with as good as the 2002 was, keep this one in mind for 2008 or so...
But I digress - the beer there was excellent. I was in time on subsequent days for the tapping of their new Paddler's Pilsner and the next day a firkin of Vanilla Bean Porter tapped for the start of American Beer Month! This along with their normal beers, which includes an excellent IPA, and other brews like the 2003 Old Blowhole and a Saison (who's not doing a saison this summer?!?).
Altogether there were about 10-12 taps on at any given time, no duplicates that I could see, and no crap on tap. They even had tall pilsner glasses for the pilsner the night they tapped it! Their Lilikoi Wheat is to be tried to, if nothing more than to taste how passionfruit can work in an American Wheat beer- it's a bit different and slightly perfumy, but it does work.
The brewers and restaurant crew were a friendly, open group that seems to really enjoy being there (seeing as they seemed to be around after work or even on days off), and the bar had a very local, though not hostile-local, feel about it; I spent a few afternoons just hanging out, talking story. There is definitely a strong local following of their beers - the aformentioned Vanilla Bean Porter was gone within an hour of being tapped! Their food menu lets pizza do the heavy lifting, with a number of gourmet-type combinations, along with sandwiches, salads, pasta, and the like.
Heading to Kona I was a bit concerned that this place would be catering to tourists and such, with BA's kinda out of the picture. I turned out to be was off, thankfully, and had a great time here.
07-22-2005 17:35:21 | More by jasonmason
4.58/5 rDev +10.6%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4 | $$
Great beer selection. If you are on the Big Island and love craft beer, do yourself a favor and stop in, especially at happy hour. They have a great beer selection. The Coconut Brown Ale is my favorite, but I believe it is seasonal. Food was very good, but was not overpriced for Hawaii.
02-18-2013 20:16:23 | More by eluvah
4.55/5 rDev +9.9%
vibe: 5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Been waiting a long time to visit this BP. Located a shortish walk from downtown Kona behind a strip mall. Walking into the pub a growler/keg shack is located to the left of the host stand-this is where you can buy a growler of keg without going into the pub-great concept. Seating is located mostly outdoors under umbrellas with a few tables inside-but hey this is Kona why sit inside?
On tap were 12 beers or so-including the regular beers available on the mainland with several pub only seasonals, including a Saisson (organic), Barley Wine (in June!), and old ale.
Our car rental travel guide included a coupon for a free ap with purchase of sampler-no brainer. Our sampler consisted of two porters, two wheats, IPA, gold, and lager. Other folks who bought samplers only got 4-5 beers-lucky us.
We followed the sampler with pints of the IPA, Hefe, Wheat, Lava Rock Porter, then glasses of Saisson, and barley wine. All beers where outstanding especially the Barley Wine-nice to have in June. A second trip to KBC the night before our return home found the Barley Wine gone-but replaced with a Bourbon-Barrel Aged Old Ale-also excellent.
Food was excellent-pizza and salad.
Service was excellent. Don't know if we will ever get back-but if I do I am heading here straight off the plane.
There is KBC in Honolulu airport as well.
Be on the lookout for the mongoose-no you are not drunk if you see one-they live on the brewery grounds.
06-26-2009 23:08:01 | More by bradybeer
Kona Brewing Co. in Kailua Kona, HI
92 out of 100 based on 69 ratings.