Introduction

This is a review of the Nespresso Hawaii Kona 2020 / 2019 Special Reserve Gran Cru capsule for the Original Line Nespresso machine. In 2020, Nespresso has reduced the price of the Hawaii Kona (Original Line) from $2.00 USD (2019 price) to $1.25 USD per capsule. The Vertuo Line capsule for reference is still $2.00 (although it’s double Espresso size cup).

UPDATE: The Vertuo Hawaii Kona LE 2021 capsule is now $1.50 US per capsule and is an “espresso” size this year instead of double espresso size.

The sleeve is front opening and silver in color, which stands out! It’s hard to tell on the bottom the cup size because of the lightness of the bolding of the fonts for “Espresso”, but I did confirm online that this Gran Cru should be brewed as an Espresso.

The sleeve has been redesigned for 2021, and additionally the capsule has a pattern redesign. Below is a picture of the new sleeve:

Aroma

The Nespresso Hawaii Kona has a very mild to light aroma. It definitely has a fruity aroma to it. The aroma is maybe like grapefruit and possibly some nut fragrance.

EDIT (2021): The aroma now has light sweet candy like hints to it, and is very very nice, and I’m not getting grapefruit notes this year.

Taste

This is one of the most unique tastes I’ve experienced in a Nespresso Gran Cru capsule, so it’s definitely special! It has a sweet fruity taste, plus also a nutty taste with a slight bitter aftertaste. The crema is thin to medium thickness.

EDIT (2021): There is not as much nutty notes to the 2021 release. It’s a lot more fruitier and I’m getting slight acidic notes to it rather than bitterness.

Result

Get some! This is definitely worth the $1.25 per capsule price to at least try a few sleeves. All Nespresso coffee is great coffee, so why not give it a shot? The Hawaii Kona 2020 Special Reserve has uniqueness – character, something that you will remember.

NOTE (2021): For the 2021 release I’m definitely not as impressed with the Hawaii Kona this year, so you might want to just try one sleeve first to see how you like it.