Educating Bartenders Worldwide.
By Beverage Trade Network
Known for its quirky flavors, the Royal Hawaii Spirits Distillery was founded by Karel Kon in 2015. It started when Kon moved to Hawaii in 1998, working as a travel agent, real estate broker, and project manager. Originally from the Czech Republic and living in Hawaii, Kon’s thirst for European-style liquor increased year after year. Over the years, Kon fell in love with fruits grown in Hawaii, like breadfruit and sugar cane. It was the aroma and flavor of the fruits which helped him in discovering their potential for spirits.
Located in Honolulu-Kalihi, their mission is to offer locally produced, made with Aloha, and thoughtfully crafted spirits using the highest quality ingredients available. They aim to create unique and affordable luxury liquors and spirits supporting Hawaiin farmers and Honolulu businesses. In 2015, Kon established the RHS Distillery business, liquor store, and liquor wholesale & distribution. RHS LLC was licensed in 2016 as an alcohol manufacturer, distillery, tasting room & liquor shop, liquor wholesale, and distributor.
The unique flavors crafted by Kon shone at the 2020 Bartender Spirits Awards.
RHS’s Award-winning spirits at the 2020 Bartender Spirits Awards, Source: RHS Distillery
“Very good, with multiple offers to distribute our award-winning products.”
“We kept our staff employed until July as we switched our production to hand sanitizers.”
“Our team switched to market our products from home. Since we did not have any more visiting customers, we focused on repackaging our products and submitting our spirits to multiple international spirits competitions from Melbourne, Australia to London, UK.”
“All areas of our business were impacted. We responded by putting in more work passion, and developed or upgraded our products.”
“Our online sales were good due to selling our sanitizers.”
“We kept informing all our customers through our website, blog, email newsletters, and social media updates.”
“Well, in Hawaii, the tourist industry is still in the early stages to allow visitors to fly in, and only with the negative covid test. So there is no positive change yet.”
“We slashed down our prices and made more discount promotions. There was no significant impact on sizes since we are offering our products in 375 and 750ml packaging. And at any day, we have at least 60 products available for sale from our 200 plus products menu list.”
“We did not make too many tastings besides our Ulu Project since we focused on the tastings in competition entries so we can get an outside evaluation of our products.”
Did you know? RHS LLC Distillery also offers custom-made spirits for the public (wedding or birthday parties, liquor stores, and restaurants & bars).
“The lesson is to be more flexible, adapt to the local situation, and be creative to survive.”
“I'm optimistic by nature, so everything will go back to normal.”
“Find more loyal customers through eCommerce, create demand for our liquors, and secure mainland distribution for a few of our award-winning products.”
“We are creating a new eCommerce website in order to attract more customers and businesses, hopefully, distribution inquiries will follow.”