Patch stopped by Hawaiian Jim's Shave Ice & Company for a Q&A with owner Scott Naso, who has taken time from keeping the streets of Middletown safe to provide Newport with some sweet treats.
Naso, a Salve Regina alum and patrol officer for the Middletown Police Department, recently opened up shop in a brightly painted pad at 8 Christie's Landing. Hawaiian Jim's officially opens full time for the season this Friday.
Tell us about the shop. What can we expect from Hawaiian Jim's?
We offer lower prices than a lot of other places around. We wanted it to be that a family of four can eat for $10. It's bright and colorful and feels like summer in here.
What does “Hawaiian Jim's” mean?
I started working for a Hawaiian store in York Beach, Maine when I was 14. That was the name of the man I worked for, and his store had the same name. James is the person who taught me the business.
What did you do before opening this shop?
I went to Salve and when I saw the foot traffic downtown, I knew I wanted a store down here. This was the right time to do it. Now, I'm a police officer in Middletown so I'll still be doing both, I've got a great crew. I'll work nights and on my days off.
How was your opening weekend?
Saturday was crazy. We already have a lot of repeat customers. It's all about getting the word out once summer hits.
What's your shave ice of choice?
Pina colada, strawberry, or coconut.