Because Kaua’i is one of my favorite islands to visit, I’ve been looking for ways to bring the essence of Kaua’i into my chilly, foggy backyard in Berkeley, California during the COVID-19 pandemic when I can’t travel there in person.

Kōloa Rum Company, founded in 2009, is about as local a product as “Made in Hawai’i” gets. It starts with rainwater from Mount Waiʻaleʻale that’s filtered through volcanic strata into underground aquifers. The rum is made with pure cane sugar and twice-distilled. It’s blended and bottled at the company’s distillery in Kalaheo, on the south side of the Garden Isle. more