PUHI — Alan Van Zee has only done his Hawaiian Island Juice for three weeks and has sold out on his previous two outings to the Kaua‘i Community Market, coordinated by the Kaua‘i County Farm Bureau at the Kaua‘i Community College campus.
Van Zee, in guest services at the Koa Kea Hotel in Po‘ipu, said he likes to patronize the local farmers in creating his “Summer Blend” fruit smoothie, stopping at the Kukui‘ula Gourmet Market, also coordinated by the Farm Bureau, on his time off from Koa Kea so he could pick up some pineapples.
“These farmers markets are good sources for people like Van Zee to connect with farmers,” said Melissa McFerrin, the Farm Bureau coordinator for the Kaua‘i Community Market and the Kukui‘ula Gourmet Market. “Sometimes it’s just more convenient for the producers of value-added products to visit the market where they can pick up what they need.”
Van Zee said he spends his week shopping at the various county Sunshine Markets and farmers markets before preparing his Saturday offering.
“There’s no electricity at the KCC Market, so I blend everything, including the ice, ahead of time and pack them in containers,” he said. “When people order one, I just shake it up and it’s ready to go.”
Van Zee uses the bartender technique of shake-shake-shake, using a tumbler, pouring the completed drink back in its cup for the consumer to enjoy.
“Right now, I’m only at the Kaua‘i Community Market on Saturdays,” Van Zee said. “I haven’t even thought of expanding yet.”
He said the last two weekends he’s attended the market, he created about five or six gallons of shakes, all of which sold out.
The Summer Blend of papaya, banana, pineapple, guava, passion fruit, lime and coconut water was a perfect complement to the arrival of the Hanapepe Cafe soup and breads as Roberta Kable and her friend enjoyed the combination following shopping at the Sunshine Market.
The Kaua‘i Community Market is open Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Kaua‘i Community College parking lot closest to Kaumuali‘i Highway.
• Dennis Fujimoto, photographer and staff writer, can be reached at 245-3681 (ext. 253) or dfujimoto@ thegardenisland.com.