Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

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Marlon F
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Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#1 Post by Marlon F »

I was on vacation last week in Oahu. Close to our hotel I found this small store/market (City Island Market, I believe) which had a deli, sold souvenirs and some wine. I was pretty impressed with the offer they had... not common in Florida. Check it out a pic from their "premium section" (they also had many other options, including some half bottles). I was not impressed with the "standing" bottles at room temperature :)
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#2 Post by G. Curd »

Always hurts to see the bottles standing at room temperature. Really great selection for a small store. That's impressive
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#3 Post by Jeff_M. »

Just got back from a few days in Oahu after a full week in Kona. The ABC stores had a pretty good selection of wine as well. Ended up buying several bottles at Costco. Hall 17, Chalk Hill 16 and a Sinegal 17.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#4 Post by Mike C. »

Island Gourmet Markets (at least the one in Wailea) also had a great (but expensive) selection of wines.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#5 Post by Marlon F »

Jeff_M. wrote: February 17th, 2021, 2:56 pm Just got back from a few days in Oahu after a full week in Kona. The ABC stores had a pretty good selection of wine as well. Ended up buying several bottles at Costco. Hall 17, Chalk Hill 16 and a Sinegal 17.
the name of this one is Island Country Markets... and it is part of ABC stores. (the bigger version with deli)
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#6 Post by Tom R W »

While in Lahaina on Maui, I found a similarly extensive wine selection @ Tamuras Fine Wine. I was amazed. Excellent selection across all regions and varietals. We drank very well that week!
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#7 Post by Dav1d S@wyer »

Surprising. I was in Honolulu for a wedding a few years ago and the selection everywhere we went was terrible/overpriced. To be expected perhaps.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#8 Post by brigcampbell »

Tom R W wrote: February 18th, 2021, 3:17 am While in Lahaina on Maui, I found a similarly extensive wine selection @ Tamuras Fine Wine. I was amazed. Excellent selection across all regions and varietals. We drank very well that week!
Great poke too! I even bought a t-shirt.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#9 Post by JG Salazar »

brigcampbell wrote: February 18th, 2021, 12:34 pm
Tom R W wrote: February 18th, 2021, 3:17 am While in Lahaina on Maui, I found a similarly extensive wine selection @ Tamuras Fine Wine. I was amazed. Excellent selection across all regions and varietals. We drank very well that week!
Great poke too! I even bought a t-shirt.
+1 on Tamura's, a must visit every time I touch down in Kahului. One of the few places I found on the island that stocks legit orgeat.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#10 Post by Mark C Johnson »

As a resident of Oahu I'm pretty dialed in to the various wine shops. Looks like Island Country Markets is at Ko Olina/ Disney's Aulani Resort area. Not to be snobbish but...most of us "locals", and I use the term lightly as I'm a haole from the mainland, don't find ourselves out there too often unless we're doing 18 holes at the Ko Olina Golf Course. Love Monkey Pod Kitchen however and sometimes find myself having lunch there.

On Oahu, the best wine shops are Fujioka Wine Times at Market City, R. Field in the Foodland at Ala Moana (10% discount on 6 bottles) and Tamura's on 10th Avenue in Waialai. All three have great selections at surprisingly good pricing. Keep in mind Kermit Lynch has a house on Oahu and his wines seem to be liberally represented. Also, William Gladstone, a Berserker who posts here on occasion imports many wonderful French wines that you can find on the shelves.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#11 Post by William Gladstone »

Mark
I happened just to be browsing -serendipitously and ran into this 808 thread and then your nice compliment, thank you.
That's thoughtful of you.
If you are interested to taste some of the 2020 Bordeaux, I am planning a tasting , should be 25 - 30 or more wines.
I've been told the wines will arrive end of April.
Essentially there is no cost, perhaps glass charge and service tip to the staff.
3660 has offered us one of the ballrooms, and Waialae country club has offered us a room, so we'll see.

The majority of Bordeaux & Burgundy we have been selling to Asia & Europe since the tariff... Awful.. Just Freak'n awful.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#12 Post by Michael Martin »

I see things like this often in the ski resort towns of Colorado. Venturing into wine shops, whose names will be kept under wraps, in summer with wines standing upright in unair-conditioned spaces. I see lots of great wines at equally “great” prices only to be snatched up by next winter’s big spender not having a clue what summers can be like in Colorado.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#13 Post by Ken Zinns »

JG Salazar wrote: February 18th, 2021, 2:27 pm
brigcampbell wrote: February 18th, 2021, 12:34 pm
Tom R W wrote: February 18th, 2021, 3:17 am While in Lahaina on Maui, I found a similarly extensive wine selection @ Tamuras Fine Wine. I was amazed. Excellent selection across all regions and varietals. We drank very well that week!
Great poke too! I even bought a t-shirt.
+1 on Tamura's, a must visit every time I touch down in Kahului. One of the few places I found on the island that stocks legit orgeat.
Agree about both the wine selection and the poke at Tamura’s. 👍
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#14 Post by R. Frankel »

It’s always fun to poke into wine shops. Sometimes utterly disappointing (like seeing a huge display of bottles in a south facing window) but once in a while you find a gem. I wandered into Domaney’s in Great Barrington, MA, and asked a few questions. The merchant said “oh you know your wine, let me show you our cold room” and led me to his quite large temperature controlled storage. Picked up some 20 year old Bordeaux (Gruaud Larose, don’t recall the vintage) at reasonable prices to have for dinner that week. Great stuff.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#15 Post by John Glas »

I was not impressed with the "standing" bottles at room temperature :)
Big question is how were the prices. We have shops in Minneapolis with old Bordeaux standing vertical. The nice thing about one shop is that if is flawed just return for a refund.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#16 Post by John Glas »

The merchant said “oh you know your wine, let me show you our cold room” and led me to his quite large temperature controlled storage. Picked up some 20 year old Bordeaux (Gruaud Larose, don’t recall the vintage) at reasonable prices to have for dinner that week. Great stuff.
Always identify yourself as a wine geek as you did! They are tired of the consumer saying I had a great red on vacation but don't remember the name.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#17 Post by alan weinberg »

will be in Kona soon if I can get the damn Coronavirus test. Anything good there? Stores?

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#18 Post by KenL. »

alan weinberg wrote: February 20th, 2021, 9:33 am will be in Kona soon if I can get the damn Coronavirus test. Anything good there? Stores?
If you are staying on the Kohala coast, Island Gourmet Market has a pretty good selection. And a great deli if you want hot food to takeout.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#19 Post by S. Williams »

Mike C. wrote: February 17th, 2021, 3:16 pm Island Gourmet Markets (at least the one in Wailea) also had a great (but expensive) selection of wines.
Wailea Wine has a very nice selection and the owner is top-notch as well. It's in the same resort shopping area as Monkeypod and Matteo’s Osteria.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#20 Post by Dan Kravitz »

30+ years ago we were staying on the north shore of Oahu. Tthere was a grocery in Haleiwa with a terrific wine selection (don't remember the name). But I definitely remember that I picked up a magnum of 1976 Salon 'Le Mesnil' for $99.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#21 Post by alan weinberg »

Kamuela Liquor store is what I was thinking of. Doubt I can beat Dan’s find.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#22 Post by emile bond »

alan weinberg wrote: February 21st, 2021, 7:06 pm Kamuela Liquor store is what I was thinking of. Doubt I can beat Dan’s find.


Alvin Wakayama is owner at Kamuela Liquor store on the Big Island. Incredible selection and a great gentleman.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#23 Post by Ken Zinns »

emile bond wrote: February 21st, 2021, 8:25 pm
alan weinberg wrote: February 21st, 2021, 7:06 pm Kamuela Liquor store is what I was thinking of. Doubt I can beat Dan’s find.


Alvin Wakayama is owner at Kamuela Liquor store on the Big Island. Incredible selection and a great gentleman.
I’ll have to check it out next time I’m there. Thanks for the tip 👍
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#24 Post by Mark C Johnson »

Dan Kravitz wrote: February 21st, 2021, 6:52 pm 30+ years ago we were staying on the north shore of Oahu. Tthere was a grocery in Haleiwa with a terrific wine selection (don't remember the name). But I definitely remember that I picked up a magnum of 1976 Salon 'Le Mesnil' for $99.

Dan Kravitz
That would have been Fujioka's Dan. Mom & pop grocery store with a great wine selection. Lyle Fujioka moved the wine store to Waialae in the early 2000s and then sold to Times Supermarket. Now it's Fujioka's Wine Times at Market City.

I used to make pilgrimages up there to search for wine. I still have a horizontal of all the DeLoach zins from 1997 which I purchased there. Gotta get around to them one of these daze. :)
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#25 Post by Steve Brickley »

+1 Tamura’s in Kailua. Great selection and can always count on Ridge Vineyards being represented. That and a wonderful poke selection and decent craft beer inventory make for a mist stop for us.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#26 Post by emile bond »

Ken Zinns wrote: February 21st, 2021, 8:58 pm
emile bond wrote: February 21st, 2021, 8:25 pm
alan weinberg wrote: February 21st, 2021, 7:06 pm Kamuela Liquor store is what I was thinking of. Doubt I can beat Dan’s find.


Alvin Wakayama is owner at Kamuela Liquor store on the Big Island. Incredible selection and a great gentleman.
I’ll have to check it out next time I’m there. Thanks for the tip 👍
Alvin’s storage is on the back part of the family property in a barn type storage behind the store and where his Mother still lived as recently as a few years ago. Alvin is a Native and attended college on mainland at UC Berkeley, if memory serves. He has a long relationship with Clive Coates. When I was there last he had just placed a multi-cases floor stack in shop of Mercury 1er Cru 2009, which was 7-8 years old at time. He had held wine back after purchasing upon release. He also sold a 10+ year Lafon Meursault lieu-dit and an ‘80s Bordeaux to walk in Customers during the 45-60 minutes I was there. In the middle of nowhere Hawaii, too.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#27 Post by Reg Brown »

Big fan of Alvin’s shop on the Big Island. When we arrive I drop the family off at the Four Seasons and make the pilgrimage to his shop immediately. Have always found great aged Ridge, terrific burgundy and wonderful rhones in a climate controlled back room. No need to ship wine for the trip (might think differently if I had a jet though!). For champagnes I have found more variety in Kona at places like Westside Wines or in the grocery stores near the major resorts. Prices have always seemed reasonable given the remote locale. All the wine shop owners know and respect Alvin as the Dean of the industry. The market for high end wine on the Big Island is very strong no doubt tied to super high end developments like Kukio and Hualalai.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#28 Post by Reg Brown »

Premium wine options in Kauai seem a bit more limited. The folks at The Wine Shop in Koloa near Kukui’ula (sp?) are very friendly and have a nice young collection with a strong set of Cali Cabs and pinots, and there is another serious shop on the other side of the island near Princeville. At least that’s what I discovered on two visits. Decent restaurant list of french wines at the Beach House Restaurant and italian wines at the Grand Hyatt’s Italian restaurant.

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#29 Post by emile bond »

Reg Brown wrote: February 23rd, 2021, 1:43 am Premium wine options in Kauai seem a bit more limited. The folks at The Wine Shop in Koloa near Kukui’ula (sp?) are very friendly and have a nice young collection with a strong set of Cali Cabs and pinots, and there is another serious shop on the other side of the island near Princeville. At least that’s what I discovered on two visits. Decent restaurant list of french wines at the Beach House Restaurant and italian wines at the Grand Hyatt’s Italian restaurant.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#30 Post by JViolini »

Wailea Wine just up the road from The Shops/below Residence Inn Mariott had a great selection when I was there in August 2019. Sadly there was no trip to Hawaii in 2020.
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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#31 Post by Marlon F »

Mark C Johnson wrote: February 18th, 2021, 11:52 pm As a resident of Oahu I'm pretty dialed in to the various wine shops. Looks like Island Country Markets is at Ko Olina/ Disney's Aulani Resort area. Not to be snobbish but...most of us "locals", and I use the term lightly as I'm a haole from the mainland, don't find ourselves out there too often unless we're doing 18 holes at the Ko Olina Golf Course. Love Monkey Pod Kitchen however and sometimes find myself having lunch there.

On Oahu, the best wine shops are Fujioka Wine Times at Market City, R. Field in the Foodland at Ala Moana (10% discount on 6 bottles) and Tamura's on 10th Avenue in Waialai. All three have great selections at surprisingly good pricing. Keep in mind Kermit Lynch has a house on Oahu and his wines seem to be liberally represented. Also, William Gladstone, a Berserker who posts here on occasion imports many wonderful French wines that you can find on the shelves.
You are right.. we stayed at the Aulani (for the kids)
Fetzner!!!!

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Re: Impressed with selection in small store in Hawaii

#32 Post by Gary Schulte »

When on Oahu I always hit Tamuras for wine and poké. When I was a grad student there in the late 70s there was little good wine to be found. Thanks to amazing chefs like Alan Wong, Roy Yamaguchi, and others in the island Asian fusion food movement and a group of winos headed by MS Chuck Furuya the islands have amazing wines to choose from. Mahalo to them.

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