Cute coffee shops are popping up everywhere in Hawaii. Not only are they there to keep us caffeinated, but quaint coffee houses have a way of making us feel part of the community. Below are four must-stop coffee shops in Hawaii—one from Maui, Oahu, Kauai and The Big Island. At each of these hot spots, you'll find a sense of place that reflects the community/owner/neighborhood. And of course, you can count on getting a great cuppa joe, too.
BELLE SURF CAFE
Belle Surf Cafe is a cute coffee shop with a certain je ne sais quoi, perhaps because of its French owner Marion Girardin. After living on the North Shore of Maui for more than 12 years, less than a year ago the mom of three finally opened her dream cafe in Kihei, Maui.
The menu offers a delicious mix of breakfast and lunch items made with local ingredients: Think tasty tartines, healthful salads and, in true French fashion, both sweet and savory crepes. The coffee menu at Belle Surf Cafe includes everything you’d ever want—from Americanos to lattes, flat whites to cold drip. And if you’re not familiar with any of the drinks, friendly baristas are happy to explain and make recommendations.
1794 South Kihei Road, Kihei, Maui
Inside the plant paradise Paiko is Arvo, the newest hangout in the hip Honolulu neighborhood of Kakaako. At the helm is creative couple Dixie and Mason Rose, and lucky for us their creativity has spilled into this cafe. Mason hails from the land Down Under, so they’ve brought some welcomed Australian flair to Hawaii (Arvo is slang for “afternoon” in Oz), pouring artisanal coffee drinks like flat whites, long blacks and macchiatos.
Arvo also offers another Aussie favorite, Vegemite, served on toast with or without avocado. If you can’t get on the Vegemite train, other avocado toasts and croissant sandwiches are available as well. And with Sunday Supply Co. umbrellas shading the outdoor seating, this place is quite possibly the chicest cafe on Oahu.
675 Auahi Street, Honolulu, Oahu
JAVA KAI KAUAI
In Kapaa’s Old Town area is an art deco building that houses a cute little coffee shop called Java Kai. Expect to find a variety of coffee and tea drinks, as well as a selection of smoothies and fresh juices. Foodies delight in the freshly made biscotti, breads, breakfast sandwiches, salads and wraps (vegan and gluten-free friendly, too) during breakfast and lunch hours.
Colorful quirky decor perfectly fits the eclecticism of the east side of Kauai. No matter what you have planned for the day, make sure to pop into the sister store next door, Shipwrecked Kauai, for modern island-inspired items for men, women and children.
4-1384 Kuhio Highway, Kapaa, Kauai
DAYLIGHT MIND COFFEE COMPANY
Kailua-Kona, The Big Island
This Kona coffee shop has an almost unbeatable ambiance. But it’s more than just a cute cafe with a stunning setting, the staff really knows their stuff (one of the co-owners has opened and designed more than 30 cafes in five countries!).
The coffee house pours hand-crafted beverages all day long, offering alternative milk and house-made syrups galore. Bakery items include daily specials such as Mango Macadamia Nut Sourdough bread and specialty cookies, cakes and muffins. Not only do they care about coffee, but Daylight Mind also serves up an array of beer, wine and specialty cocktails. If you can’t make it to the flagship location, you can order Daylight Mind coffee beans online or find it at Whole Foods throughout Hawaii.
75-5770 Ali'i Drive, Kailua-Kona, Big Island
*photo credits: via Belle Surf Cafe, Kenna Reed, via Java Kai, via Daylight Mind