On March 28 the museum opened its Coffee Bar! Located in the tranquil Palm Courtyard, the Coffee Bar serves 100 percent Island-grown coffee—have a French press, espresso, cappuccino, latte or an iced coffee ($2.50-$4)—as well as tea, Waialua Sodas, Perrier, a chocolate torte, and OnoPops.
Coffee Bar Manager Kyle Little makes great coffees, but he has another talent up his tattooed sleeve—baking. Those oversize cookies on the counter? He bakes them fresh every morning, using his Grandma Thelma Little’s dough recipe. “She made the best breakfast skillet potatoes and chocolate-chip cookies,” says Kyle. Back in West Plains, Missouri, “My Grandma baked with me when I was little.”
And he learned well—the cookies have become something of an addiction for staff and the board of directors. He’s also got a bean background, having worked at a boutique coffee house in Illinois where he was assistant roaster, and at the popular St. Louis breakfast-and-lunch spot Half & Half (which is owned by Kaldi’s, which now owns Honolulu Coffee Co.).
Now early birds on the first Shangri La tour of the day can jumpstart their engines as they wait for the shuttle, and museum visitors and staff who once avoided what was a scorching frying pan of a space now linger at the white table tops under a canopy (that’s popular with Instagrammers) while sipping something good.