Aloha Kakōu and E Komo Mai to Talk Story, our blog series in which we sit down and talk story with a different member of the Timbers Kauaʻi ʻohana. This month we’re speaking to Matt Kawamura, the bartender at Hualani’s Restaurant.

Matt was born and raised on the island of Kaua’i. He’s known for his warm smile, generous personality and ensuring every guest that crosses his path leaves with a smile on their face. He met with us to answer a few questions about Timbers Kaua’i at Hokuala. Here are his answers:

What is your “kuleana” (job) at Timbers Kauai and how long have you been part of the ‘ohana? 

I started as a backwaiter in June of 2018. 3 months later I became a barback and then 3 months after that I became a bartender. By 2019 I was bartending full time at Hualani’s.

In your opinion, what makes Timbers Kauai at Hokuala special or unique?

Being centrally located in the middle of the island yet still feeling secluded and exclusive. Also the beautiful views!

Describe Kauai in one word.


When not working, what is your favorite hobby?

When not working, you can find me either out on the ocean on my one-man canoe, taking photos or cooking for my friends and family.

What does Aloha mean to you? 

Aloha means being warm, welcoming, and a genuine person to everyone.

What is your favorite Hawaiian food?

Tinono – roasted pork belly with tomatoes, onions and soy sauce. I usually make it myself, but Harleys Tropical BBQ makes a delicious option.

What is your favorite drink to make and why?  

I love to pour Louis XIII (cognac) because of the presentation and elegance of the glasses and bottle.

Mahalo Matt for taking the time to talk story with us! Get to know some of our other Timbers Kaua’i ‘Ohana like Guest Experience Coordinator McKell or Housekeeping Manager Kaui.