In the quiet coastal enclave of Lahaina, Hawaii, just a few hundred feet in from waves and whales, Drift Coffee is carefully crafting espresso and drip brews from island-grown beans.
Sourcing coffees from a variety of roasters operating throughout the Aloha State, the house espresso at the laid-back, modern shop is a blend of beans grown in Maui and Honduras roasted by fellow Mauian company Social Hour Coffee Roasters.
Drip and manual pourover offerings rotate seasonally to showcase Gesha-variety coffees and experimental microlots also produced by farmers on Maui and other islands. Previously the shop has offered beans by vertically integrated coffee roaster Paradise Coffee Roasters as well as by Outpost Coffee Kauai.
Surrounding the cool white quartz bar and natural wood surfaces in the Lahaina shop, Drift’s walls of white and an accent wall of warm sunrise orange are kept relatively clear, save for a logo-adorned surfboard hanging on the back wall.
“The whole open look is for an ease of mind for everyone,” Drift Coffee General Manager James Vermaak told Daily Coffee News. “If you get into a place that’s cluttered and there’s a lot of things everywhere it’s kind of overwhelming for most people. Making it clear, just an open, clean area, people feel comfortable.”
A Slayer Steam X espresso machine is the primary engine on the bar, paired with Mahlkönig E65S and Mazzer Super Jolly espresso grinders. A Mahlkönig EK43 grinds for batch drip as well as manual brews using custom Hawaii-proud V60 and AeroPress brewers.
Founded last year by Canadian transplant Don Trestage, Drift Coffee is currently is bringing on new investors with an eye towards expansion.
Though there are no plans to launch a roasting operation just yet, Vermaak said Drift may soon ride the currents of demand into multiple additional retail locations on other Hawaiian islands.