Brian Berusch

JUST AS WE WERE SIGNING-OFF TO SEND THIS ISSUE to print we received news that HILuxury received the highly coveted “Best Lifestyle Magazine” Maggie Award from the Western Publishing Association for our work in 2011. This, from an organization that has been carefully critiquing every magazine west of the Mississippi for more than 60 years.

Thank you, to everyone who makes the best darn lifestyle magazine in the U.S. (well, almost the entire U.S.) come from a our little island in the Pacific. From our CEO, down to the reporters that feed us pertinent information, it’s an honor to work together.

I’m constantly amazed at the amalgam of tastemakers who contribute to the pages you’re about to enjoy. With each issue, I am somehow surprised at just how intriguing almost any subject can be once you peel back a few layers.

Take our handcrafted vodka story (pg. 126); we started with a tweet to a respected sommelier and winemaker whom I know. Soon, I was talking with Brian Ellison, founder and CEO of Death’s Door Spirits, as he was walking through a freshly planted Wisconsin wheat field, from which he’ll make the smoothest vodka I’ve ever tasted.

In turn, Ellison insisted we speak with the forefather of American craft distillers, Tito Beveridge from Tito’s Vodka in Austin, Texas, as well as Mark Nigbur, a Maui-based distiller (maker of Pau Maui Vodka) before ending up down the road from our production office with a distiller on Sand Island Access Road. I guess all gilded paths lead back to Hawai’i, no?

Speaking of gilded: Our one-on-one with “Golden” Joe Montana-one of the winningest quarterbacks in history-had more than a few fellas around here buzzing with excitement. Montana’s cool demeanor, charm and wisdom on life was refreshing, to say the least. Montana has gone on to raise a beautiful family, bottle elegant wine (and olive oil!), thus continuing to be a role model for you Baby Boomers.

In this, our unofficial “Men’s Issue” (yet official fifth anniversary issue), we also tracked down a handful of guys who boast the most “Dangerous Jobs” in the islands (pg. 92), from a Coast Guard rescue swimmer, to a SWAT-Bomb Squad leader, a marine mammal rescuer and a volcanologist.

While our food team scoured the isles for eateries making fine use of local game (pg. 120), our golf expert managed to attain some game-changing tips from one of O’ahu’s top golf pros (pg. 56).

Our much-loved watch guide features an added bonus: An on-the-ground report from our reporter at Baselworld, Switzerland-the most significant watch show in the world.

Yet perhaps our most picturesque feature spotlights this season’s bikinis and beachwear, which we were fortunate enough to shoot on location at the St. Regis Princeville on the rather photogenic island of Kaua’i.

There’s no shortage of meat (especially if you flip to pg. 116 to read about Hy’s Steak House) in these pages. Go on-take a bite.

With Aloha,

Brian Berusch – Editorial Director

Feel free to “friend” our HILuxury Facebook page to find out about events and news throughout the luxury community as they are happening. Also, electronic versions of issues past can be read at www.hiluxury.com.