After our crazy morning with Isabel falling we still managed to have some fun. This goes to show how beautiful and resilient those little ones are.
Hilo Coffee Mill
We went to visit a local coffee plantation called Hilo Coffee Mill. Great little place. Folks were real nice. It started to drizzle rain a bit when we showed up. We got onto the last tour of where they roast and package the beans.
Here are a couple of facts:
- They have about a 1,000 trees on their property.
- Some of the trees are known to be as old as 150 years.
- If you take care of your trees, pruning, feeding, watering (not an issue in Hilo), then your trees will reward you for generations.
- One tree will produce about a 1lb of coffee (no wonder coffee on the Big Island is so expensive)
- They had pick their cherries only when red. No mechanization involved.
- Cherries on the trees ripen at different rates. You can have a twig of cherries and half can be ruby red, the others still green. This makes a difference in your coffee.
- They press the cherries through a special machine that pushes the pit out (the coffee bean) and they save the pulp.
- The flesh of the cherry as more caffeine than the bean! The workers usually chew on the cherries while working so they can keep going strong. Very funny to hear that.