This is for our 21 and over crowd. Drink responsibly.
You don’t have to go very long or very far to recognize the variety on atmospheres and ecosystems on Maui. One minute you are in a beach like area with soil rich with sand and a touch of salty ocean breeze, while miles down the road you will be a lush, wet, jungle atmosphere. Wiggle your finger over the map and you are in the cool, clear country side, but take a right and you’ll find yourself in a desert! It can be so surprising and wonderful to notice all the distinct shifts that depend on wind direction, essentially, on this mountainous Vally isle. All of this is to say if you find yourself in the desert like ‘oma’opio area, you will also find a fancy little distillery of Ocean Vodka.
We recently went to check it out. The first thing I noticed were the variety of sugar canes plants placed on display in the earth of the distillery, that reminded me of my childhood adjacent sugar cane fields. The next thing I noticed were the sweeping views that capture every corner from South to North shores and everything in between with the horizon framing West Maui.
The tour was quite enlightening. The sugar cane would serve more than an aesthetic as we were informed that the vodka is actually distilled from organic sugar cane. But the finished productc contains only 40% alcohol and 60% water. So, the distilled product is then mixed with deep ocean mineral water obtained from 3,000 feet below the Kona Coast of Hawai’i island. I love that this farm is family owned, a start up that extends its Ohana to an extended family of farmers, marketing, chefs and local employees.
As for the tasting. We had a delightful host who handled the drunk jokes within out party just find and I’m sure is a pro at this given the nature of her job. I was blown away by the coconut vodka that had such a delightful flavor. The others were well-liked by others in our party, however, for me, someone who hasn’t spent much of 2020 and 2021 taking shots it tasted rather strong. The gin was a favorite which boasted the effervescence of herbs like rosemary, thyme, etc. I also liked the whiskey which was a special batch, never to be brewed again.
After completing your tour you have the option of sitting on the broad loan that has patio seating and picnic tables and enjoy a variety of special drinks and appetizer style meals. The pizzas were delicious! As was the salad and the poke nachos. The drinks were refreshing and flowing freely. One critical observation is that for a distillery, I really expected the drinks to be alcohol-forward (heavy?) but these were very fruity, very juicy and the flavor of the alcohol was lost.
Still, this is a beautiful property that can transport you (even a local) to a peaceful and tranquil moment that appreciate Hawai’i history and atmosphere. Definitely worth an afternoon.
You can find out more about this location here.
Always, always have a designated driver.