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Out and About

A Taste of Paradise Ciders

I heard nothing but good things about Hawaii’s first hard cider brewery so my friend Matt and I decided to check it out. Located in Kalihi, Paradise Ciders is in the industrial block next to OCC. If you’re lucky, you can find parking out front. Otherwise, you may need to cruise the area in search of street parking.

We walked into the tapping room which is the size of a miniature hangar, yet without the feeling of being crowded or cramped. We were the first ones there this particular Saturday afternoon so we sat at the counter, which probably seats 6. Shortly after sitting down we noticed several patrons coming in. The industrial chic style is informal yet inviting, and all the material is resourced. I noticed a few tables here and there with only 1 long table big enough to fit a party of 10. I would advise coming early to grab a seat while you can.

We sit at the bar and take a look at the wall menu of available cider selections. Delectable descriptions put us at a quandry as to what we should order. Would it be the Leid Back Lilikoi? Or the Ginger Bomb? Luckily, flights of four 8-oz glasses allowed us to satisfy our curiosity of more than 1 cider.

The first menu shows ciders that the brewery provides to about 50 dining establishments in the state of Hawaii. Small batches are made of the ciders shown on the seasonal small batch menu, and are only offered in the tasting room. My flight consisted of Mango Daze, Pineapple Cruzer, Guava Lava, and Killah Dragon. .

L to R: Mango Daze, Pineapple Cruzer, Guava Lava, Killah Dragon

Aaaah, my first taste of the Mango Daze. The crisp taste of a cider, and a mango-flavored one at that. The subtle taste of mango hits your tongue but with an oh-so-subtle bubbly crisp taste. The ciders here are brewed with well-known local fruits such as guava, lilikoi, and dragon fruit. The Pineapple Cruzer didn’t do it for me. I love pineapple, mind you, but I’m not sure I like my pineapple as a cider. The “acidic” pineapple mixed with the slight bubbly of the “ciderization” (yes, I made up this word) overrode the fruit flavor for me. I didn’t notice an aftertaste. I loved the Guava Lava. Smooth with the light and fruity flavor of guava, and almost to the point where the aftertaste was all guava. It’s a perfect drink to have while watching a sunset on the beach. I would rate Killah Dragon below Guava Lava. I could taste the dragonfruit but it wasn’t a very strong flavor compared to the guava.

Matt and his Killah Dragon.

Serena tends the bar and was willing and able to answer any questions. Her husband John is the brewer and owns Paradise Ciders with his business partner and brewer John. Before I forget, Kaia is their ever-present canine companion at the tasting room.


Feel free to check this tasting room out. Small but spacious, Paradise Ciders is a great place to sample the ciders and hang out with friends. They only serve pizza, but over the weekends the food trucks front the street outside the hangar. I highly recommend coming early to avoid the crowds.

Paradise Ciders
2003 Colburn Street
Honolulu, HI 96819

Wed – Sat 3-8 pm
Sun 1-6 pm