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A friend of mine in Colorado recently was planning his annual Hawaii vacation to Kauai. While chatting on Facebook about his upcoming visit, he expressed frustration about the lack of liquor stores on the little island.
While it’s true, there are not a lot of liquor stores on Kauai, there are sections in every grocery store and Long’s Drugs that are big enough to rival some liquor stores on the mainland. They carry the beer, alcohol, wine and champagne that you would expect.
An exciting option for the adventurous wine drinker is the Princeville Wine Market on Kauai’s north shore. “My strategy is to find jewels and special wines for connoisseurs and people who want to try new things,” says owner Daniel Braun, who is a certified sommelier.
Da Kine Wine relocated from Kapaa and reopened in January as the Princeville Wine Market.
Specializing in small production, boutique wineries and allocated wines, there is an emphasis on sustainable agriculture. The store offers a selection of organic and bio dynamic wines which I am a fan of; not only because they are good for the planet but because they don’t give me the headaches conventional wines do.
Owner and certified sommelier Daniel Braun.
Braun is friendly and island-style easy going. “Wine is living the good life,” he says. “It can be transcending. Your sense of smell is located right next to your sense of memory. So, how you describe wine and how you experience it are directly related to your life experience.”
“Tourists like that I carry local wines as well as allocated wines that they have trouble finding at home,” he says. “They also like my convenient location and not having to deal with supermarket crowds.”
Because of Braun’s extensive knowledge and informal attitude, going into the Princeville Wine Market can be a learning experience. “Tourists enjoy the professional service and wine advice,” he tells me, I know I do.
“A popular thing for folks to do is grab a bottle of wine and put it in the well chiller. It makes any bottle of wine cold within a few minutes. Then they take it to the beach and watch the sunset.”
Chilled wine on the beach while the sun is setting? Sounds good to me!