LBD Coffee hopes to expand

KAPAA — LBD Coffee LLC, a local company that owns Coffee Times, Blair Estate Farm and Kauai Cigar Company, is hoping to expand.

Since opening in 1993, the company has established itself in the production of tobacco. Now, they want to start growing corn on their plot of land behind the Sleeping Giant in Kapaa.

Eventually, they want to open a distillery, and use locally grown corn as a base, said Les Drent, owner of LBD Coffee.

“We thought about growing a little corn to be used in the production of ethanol,” Drent said.

To get started, Drent applied to extend his term for the Agribusiness Development Corporation. On Wednesday, the Agribusiness Development Corporation, based on Honolulu, unanimously voted to approve the extension.

“The original ask was to grow tobacco. Then it was coffee and the site was upgraded and cultivated, amended, and cover crops were added, irrigation was put in,” said Scott Enright, chair of the Board of Agriculture. “Much like his cigars, and his coffee, it would be high-end liquor. There’s more and more small distilleries coming into play in Hawaii.”

There is one distillery on Kauai, Koloa Rum Company, in Kalaheo. Kauai Beer Company, in Lihue, and Kauai Island Brewery, in Eleele, are the two breweries on the island.

There is no plan to use the land near the Sleeping Giant for corn production until 2017, Drent said.

“We’ll just have to see if the plan is feasible before moving forward,” he said.

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