Kona 24-Karat, Light-Medium Roast
Sweet, full, round, balanced, with a hint of dry fruit, but very limited in range and nuance. A slight roastiness, rather pleasant when the cup is hot, becomes oppressively bitter as it cools.
With its exhilaratingly colorful, whimsical packaging lighting up grocery store aisles all over Hawaii, Lion Coffee is perhaps the Islands most ubiquitous coffee brand. Although Lion is now under new ownership, it appears from this single sample that this venerable mark continues to produce decent but hardly impressive coffee. By the way, definitely not a Light-Medium roast: Our Agtron readings indicate that this is, using Specialty Coffee Association of America terminology, a dark roast. Visit
Who Should Drink It
Those who like to read the package while they sip. This valve-packed sample, which I pulled from a grocery store aisle in Kona, may have been stale. Those who are fortunate enough to find a fresh bag may find this 100% Kona in its pretty package a plausible last-minute gift to haul home from the Islands.
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This review originally appeared in the February, 2002 tasting report: Konas and Other Hawaiis