In a time when new vendors are popping up out of nowhere, Luna Kava comes to us with a solid trio of medium grind Kavas out of the gates – a Vanuatuan Borogu, a Fijian Lawena, and a Blend. They also have an Instant Kava available which I’ll have to review further down the road.

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I wanted to review the Borogu first because it’s a pretty solid point of reference in any Kava vendors’ arsenal. In the video, you’ll notice that I have an initial kind of startled reaction to the taste. As explained in the video, it’s because I used a new preparation method I wanted to try. Namely, (lightly) boiling about a cup of water to five tablespoons of Kava root and mixing until it gets a greasy sheen. Then dumping in another three cups of room temperature water and squeezing it through a sieve. This makes the Kava taste pretty bad, but it certainly stretches out the beat of the kavalactones. You can feel the Kava resin properly drip through your hands as you squeeze. If you’re ever tight on cash and want your krunks’ worth, you might want to take a close look at this method.

I followed up the next day with the AluBall, and this stuff tastes just fine that way. Like I said in the video review, it is reminiscent of Nakamal at Home’s Black Sand Kava, or Kalm with Kava’s Borogu.

The effects are exactly what you would expect them to be from a Borogu – head and body buzz spread pretty evenly out, with a nice stoniness in the eyes and a deep, euphoric anti-anxiety buzz. Definitely a night time Kava or a weekend Kava. A good one to use to initiate Kava-doubters who claim they don’t feel anything.

Head-8.5/10

Body -8.5/10

Flavor -8/10

Strength – Medium-High

Best for: End of the day relaxation, getting krunked on a week-night, weekend day Kava

Luna Kava Borogu – 8.3/10

Kalm with Kava’s Fiji Loa Waka comes from a farmer that the folks at Kalm with Kava personally know in Taveuni, Fiji.  There is nothing more reassuring to me as a farmer’s advocate all over the world than to hear that Kava vendors are developing meaningful relationships with Kava farmers. I believe this is the next frontier in the Kava world – turning the world’s best medicine into a social enterprise that can help give farmers in the Pacific Islands better incomes and opportunities.  I’ll be making a big announcement very soon on my own initiative to engage with Kava-growing communities in the South Pacific.

Fiji Loa Waka is divinely delicious, with a smooth milky texture and fresh taste. My first impression of this Kava was “wow, this stuff smells like it was just harvested and dried within the last few weeks!” This stuff goes down the hatch very smoothly and has a crisp finish that wouldn’t create a gag effect even in the greenest Kava drinker. I kneaded this stuff several different times and making it with chilled coconut milk was absolutely euphoric.

Fijian Kavas are known for being light, bubbly, and subtle. Loa Waka isn’t really like that at all. Loa Waka is made from 100% lateral roots and packs a 12% kavalactone content. The chemotype for this Kava is 463251 and its effects are immediately noticeable.

  • Strength (Mind) – 9/10
  • Strength (Body) – 7/10
  • Flavor – 10/10
  • Overall Strength: High – Strong

 

I appreciate a good trailblazer, or an entrepreneur coming out of nowhere and reinventing or reintroducing something. I feel like I kind of did that myself with the Kavasseur blog – helped fuel a soothing revolution to quell the nerves of those of us willing to sling back pond water tasting sludge on a regular basis.

Squanch is a newcomer to the Kava world, and I have never seen anything like them. They have some mysterious connection – I picture handshakes in coconut groves as baskets of Fijian Kava aggregate on a sago palm mat – to Kava farmers. And the quality of Kava is extremely high. It is soft, soothing, and very good to keep around as a daily Kava. It is the essence of an anti-anxiety Kava.

If you want to have a heavy session with Squanch Fijian Kava, you’re more than welcome to do so. I brewed a huge bowl (1 cup of root to 3 cups of water) and drank the whole thing within a day. The first few shells had me smiling and rocking away. The last few shells put me out. So you can gauge your own level of intake and make this a soothing or a shelling Kava.

Oh, and it tastes great 🙂

You can only buy directly from Squanch. Email: samsquanch1972(at)gmail.com

Effect (Mind) – 9/10

Effect (Body) – 8/10

Taste – 9/10

Strength – Variable and easily manipulatable into a nice relaxing Kava to a laying-down-on-the-bench getting stoned with islanders Kava. Medium strength

Good for – anxiety, social anxiety, stress, winding down, getting krunked

Squanch Fijian – 8.6/10

In a low risk move, I decided to venture back over to the Hawaiian Kava Center website to see what kind of potions Jonathon Yee has brewed up over the past months. After enjoying his Moi, Hiwa, and Nene, I decided to try something completely different – Pana Ewa.

This Kava squeezes out unusually dark – an almost chocolate-covered almond hue. But don’t let the color fool you. This stuff goes down as smooth as silk. It is delicious and has the perfect suite of smoothy, nutty, earthy tones.

While this Kava might come across initially as anti-anxiety warrior, it creeps in and sets you running for the nearest easy chair. It it what I would consider a jumpy Kava – hurtling you from complete relaxation and calmness to total giggliness and creativity. Don’t underestimate this Kava by throwing back too many shells before you’ve felt the first one. You might very well wake up in Port Villa laying on a bench (wait, that would be a good thing, right?)
Effect (Mind) – 9/10
Effect (Body) – 9/10
Flavor -9/10
Strength – Initial Medium Strength with a Strong Creeping Effect
Best for – Complete Relaxation at the end of the day, Weekend Kava, No next day efects
Overall – 9/10