Hawaiians didn’t drink milk (well, babies did, from their mothers) nor did they have cheese (no cows or goats to be found prior to late 1700s) so when cheese was introduced to Hawaiʻi they had to make up a new word for this dairy product. Waiūpaʻa is the logical choice! Waiū is milk (remember from yesterday? Liquid from the ū?) and paʻa means firm or solid. In other words, waiūpaʻa literally means solid milk. How clever!
Check out the list below for a list of the different varieties of waiūpaʻa:
Waiūpaʻa Kuikilani Swiss cheese
Waiūpaʻa keka – Cheddar cheese
Waiūpaʻa parmesan – Parmesan cheese
Waiūpaʻa i haʻaliu ʻia – Process(ed) cheese
ʻOno ka waiūpaʻa – CHeese is delicious.
E kūʻai i ka waiūpaʻa pamesana naʻu, ke ʻoluʻolu – Buy parmesan cheese for me, please.