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Kona Brewing Co.
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Active Beers: 23
Beer Ratings: 5,040
Beer Avg: 3.8
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
$$ - reasonable
[ Brewery, Bar, Eatery ]
75-5629 Kuakini Hwy
phone: (808) 334-2739
Kona Brewing Company bottled beer and mainland draft beer is produced on the US West Coast at Widmer Brothers Brewery in Portland, OR, and on the East Coast at Redhook Ale Brewery in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
Beers are brewed at / by another brewery.
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vibe: 3 | quality: 2 | service: 3 | selection: 2.5 | $$$
A- Laid back, easy to find a seat, not too loud. mind you this was like an hour and a half from closing. Locals weren't overly friendly, but not rude either, kept to themselves. a very relaxed place to have a pint.
Q-the beer isn't great. they do have one or two decent brews on tap at any one time, but the majority are fat from the best. not so horrible as to not be able to finish though.
S-the bartender was super nice, and let us taste our whole way through the tap menu until we found something at no charge. but as soon as the clock was within 25-30 minuets away from closing time, he made VERY sure everyone there to drink was aware it was time to get ready to move. fakeness never wins me over, but i'll accept it where it benefits me.
S- not a very vast beer menu for a brew pub, and of what's there two or three are just minor tweaks to the year round recipes. like i said above though, if your patient, or lucky there are one or two there that will be good, but you have to look.
V-A bit over priced for the beer, can't speak for the food. but what do you expect from the only brewpub on that side of the big island, and in the middle of the major tourist town of the big island also.
worth a stop if your in Kailua , it at least has a nice mellow atmosphere, and the food sounded good (had to peak at the menu). to sum it all up it is to hawaii, what the Moose's tooth is to Alaska, but the beer isn't as good.
09-14-2010 06:17:34 |
More by irishevans
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Visited this place twice on a Thanksgiving golf trip with a buddy. We had high expectations given how popular Kona's brew is here in SoCal. It was pretty difficult to find. Down a side street then down another between some industrial buildings. NO SIGNAGE.
The bar area is wayyy too small, but we got lucky and found seats pretty quick.
Once inside, it was apparent that everyone working the bar area was pretty baked. I mostly drank their Hefeweizen which was the 'beer of the week'-going out for like $3.25 a pint. It's pretty damn good, esp. at that price! (The lilikoi wheat beer is just too perfumy).
They F'ed up our Pizza order...no problem, they gave us the first to keep then made another to take back to the condo.
Overall, the food is pretty good and same with the beer. It still absolutely confounds me that this place...a.)has no signage to direct folks in, and, b.)doesn't open a location in a happenin' part of Kona-where they could expand and get plenty of walk by/drive by traffic.
12-16-2006 07:54:29 |
More by weizendoc
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 3.5 | food: 4.5 | $$$
I got to check this place out during my honeymoon. I had heard their pizza was good and I had already had a couple of the thier beers, so why not. The pizza was outstanding, some of the best I've ever had. Just a bit too much though on the price side, but then again, it is Hawaii. The beer was stellar, especially the Pipeline Porter off draught. Damn fine coffee porter IMHO. Service was a little slow, but nothing too bad. If I get the chance to go back to the Big Island, I'll definately hit it up again.
02-19-2008 03:23:37 |
More by JISurfer
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3 | $$
I married my wife on the Big Island, and have returned since. We're from Washington State and some of their beers are available here. The ones that are are ok. nothing to write home about really, but what you get at the brewery is a different story. We've had a deliciously sweet and refreshing organic saison, and a Belgian strong ale that could hold its own with Duvel.
Seems to be another example of a brewery that has some bill-paying easily accessible ales for the masses that provide them the opportunity to brew high quality big-concept beers for the rest of us.
The food is ok. Good enough, but not good. The pizzas were the best of what we had.
The atmosphere is 50/50. You're outdoors, in Hawaii and it's in the mid-eighties which, as a Washingtonian, is really nice. But there's no view and you're kinda boxed in by plants and fences.
Overall, it's kinda the foremost beer spot on the island, and probably in all of Hawaii. Any beer lover will enjoy sampling their brews. The Big Island is a bit of a secret beer lover's paradise, with three breweries and an up and coming brew pub (The Tako Taco) up north that features the other islands' breweries.
08-19-2010 10:53:23 |
More by NickH44
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5 | $$$$
Visited 3 times in 4 days on my vacation to the Big Island in Hawaii.
On the whole, I like this palce - great beer selection, a few of them are excellent, and the food is above average. Their non-bottled offerings are far better than the bottled ones, which doesn't make a lot of sense to me.
Atmosphere is atrocious on the busier nights of the week - it feels like a fraternity party with the noisey people, loud music, and employees (including cooks) singing aloud to the music. There's no room to sit, or even to order a pint at the pub while standing, and the wait commonly exceeds an hour.
During quieter times I found the service to be about average, and the other features tend to stick out - this place is hard to find on your first visit, especially with regard to the parking. Once you figure out the warehouse-like back road entry it isn't too bad, but it gives off a very "locals only" feel from the start.
Given the paucity of beer selection in Hawaii this place is a must, but in any other context I can't see it doing well with the location & atmosphere. It doesn't help that their better beers are the rotating seasonals that aren't bottled. Their chocolate stout and oceanic organic wheat simply eclipse their pale ale, but yet they bottle the pale ale and it doesn't seem to do so well.
03-11-2008 07:24:45 |
More by yemenmocha
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Located in Koko Marina. Not a huge place, but seemed to by cozy. One side has a nice waterfront view. Large bar area in the middle. This place does seem to give off a bit of the island feel.
The standard beers in the lineup were on tap, with the Castaway IPA, Hula Hefeweizen, Lavaman Red, and Pipeline Porter in addition. Our party found the beers to be above average, and fresh.
Service was pretty good, given that we had a large party. Food was pretty good, with the shrimp melt seeming to be a hit, along with the fish tacos.
Overall, a must stop if you are on the island.
09-29-2007 17:21:40 |
More by Bierguy5
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4 | $$
Hit this place on my vacation to the Big Island. We went three times and ate two of those times.
The food menu was pretty limited in my opinion, if you are a meal lover, you will be very disappointed. The pork sandwich was outstanding, but I ordered a calzone the next time which was very disappointing. I should have known better.
The beer is great. If you don't like the Kona beers, good luck finding anything to drink on Kona. The Castaway IPA was by far our favorite and I would highly recommend it. We also took home growlers of the wheat.
While you are there, you can get on a tour of the brewery and I did have a good time, but you didn't see much. The guide was pretty informative and will answer all of your questions. I did not know that the original owners were a father-son team that began the brewery out of a home brewing kit, five gallons at a time. It gives all of us home brewers hope!
09-13-2008 23:56:13 |
More by rgrholmes168
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Man, this place is hard to find. Even when you know where it is, the location isn't all that easy to spot from either Kuakini or Palani. We walked there from "downtown" Kailua and had to ask for directions twice even though it was just a half mile.
There is seating outside and inside, and we opted for inside since there was no wait. Atmosphere is fine but nothing unique. I started with the sampler, for which you can pick your four beers. I went with the Castaway IPA, Lavaman Red Ale and the two porters, Black Sand and Pipeline, since many of the other Kona beers are easy to find at bars around the island. As the bartender said it would be, the Black Sand was definitely the best of the four.
The place is known for its pizza, so my wife and I ordered the pizza of the week. The waitress even confirmed with us that we wanted the pizza with the habaneros. "Sure, we can handle it." Holy smokes that pizza was hot. The wife gave up after one slice and ordered two slices of regular pepperoni. I soldiered on but couldn't get much further.
We had a great time despite our overly aggressive ordering, and although the location of the pub isn't all that scenic, it was nice to get away from the main drag of tourist spots.
08-22-2010 16:36:45 |
More by coachdonovan
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$
Stopped here for lunch and a couple of pints. A little on the 'smooth and polished' side for my tastes, but a friendly place in general that seems to appeal to tourists and locals alike.
The Kona standards we see on the shelves are available, plus a decent variety of draft-only options. Sadly the Castaway IPA wasn't available, but I had a Lavaman Red (pretty tasty) as a consolation prize, and followed up with a Big Wave Golden Ale (shockingly good for the style).
We sat at an outdoor table, where service was friendly and efficient. It was during the lunch rush, so not a lot of time for beery chitchat with the server. Food (sandwiches/fries) was tasty and arrived quickly. Pricing is high by mainland standards but in line with what we saw elsewhere on the Big Island during our trips.
Worth a stop as you're passing through town.
11-26-2010 14:40:03 |
More by PDXHops
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5 | $$
Went on a Friday night and it was pretty packed. Luckily, hit a patch where the wait was just 5 mins for a table. Looked about 15 mins later and the place was swamped.
The outdoor setting is nice and the tables aren't so close that it is uncomfortable. There is an outdoor and indoor bar. Inside has TV's and music playing.
Ordered a flight of beers to try and then the specialty Friday cask release. Was very excited to taste Da Grind Buzz, but wasn't lucky enough to have a specialty batch in the bourbon barrel. Our waiter said that normally he isn't a huge fan of this beer, but the current batch they were serving was the best he'd tasted.
The food was quite good. At least I am trying to use my non-intoxicated glasses. I was hungry to begin with and then drinking a few beers before actual food can do that.
The service wasn't super, but it wasn't poor. I enjoyed the food more than most of the brewpubs I have been to, but I was a bit disappointed by the blandness of the outside area. I don't know what I was expecting, but it wasn't memorable.
The nice part is that they have a stand outside set up to fill growlers, which I bumped up the "selection" area for. Overall, the prices were reasonable for what the island charges to eat.
03-04-2012 13:32:51 |
More by Duffman929
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Kona Brewing Co. in Kailua Kona, HI