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2018 Kava Awards?

Discussion in 'Kava Lounge' started by Kojo Douglas, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. Kojo Douglas

    Kojo Douglas Kava Enthusiast

    Since I'm not doing these anymore, I'd be curious to know what people think about 2018. For me, the most impressive changes came with a rise and regularity in quality Fijian Kava (Kava Vinaka, for example).

    There were a lot of new actors in the scene that I didn't get to know because I've been back in Africa for 10 months now. Who were some of the new standouts?
  2. Intrepidus_dux

    Intrepidus_dux Kava Enthusiast

    Melo melo was fun there for awhile. I really like the recent batch of Mahakea. Fiji Fresh waka was good too.
  3. Kapmcrunk

    Kapmcrunk The Kaptain of Crunk KavaForums Founder

    My vote is for Ambae - Kava Time

    It was a throwback to times of old. I still have one brick of it, and I intend on saving it for a special occasion.
    recentreturn and Intrepidus_dux like this.
  4. sɥɐʞɐs

    sɥɐʞɐs ‾‾‾‾‾‾‾‾‾‾‾ Review Maestro

    Fiji Fresh waka was a standout, there was a sudden flood of good Melo Melo from several vendors after that volcano went off, Root of Happiness started selling fresh 'awa. I tried a few new brands that I came across on eBay, Amazon and Instagram...none were impressive but weren't terrible either. I found some fresh Isa on Instagram, but it sold out so quick I didn't get any. I started buying more kavas like 5 Star and Nambawan, I'm finding them to be delightfully effective with reduced side-effects. They're expensive, but at least they actually work at a reasonable dose. Most of the time, I still buy my local mystery waka or tongan root from the tongans around here...and mix with Wakacon waka. (which seems to have gotten a little weaker this year) ::KavaChug::
  5. Travis

    Travis Kava Enthusiast

    I liked the canopy botanicals kavas I tried. They were potent and averagely priced. But haven't ordered from them again after they stopped accepting money as form of payment.
    Edward likes this.
  6. fait

    fait Position 5 Hard Support

    I was puzzled when I heard people talking about Ambae kava. When I hopped back on here regularly, I was aware of the eruption of the volcano at Ambae that prompted evacuation of the island. I wasn't sure if someone mentioned a batch they bought prior to the eruption or what. Is the kava that was grown there unique to that island or is what was grown there also grown on other islands?
  7. Kapmcrunk

    Kapmcrunk The Kaptain of Crunk KavaForums Founder

    That was the story on the first batch. I'm not sure if they had more on hand, or maybe they're growing the same strains off of the island, but yes it was very much off limits until now. In fact it looks like they're opening it back up currently.

    I think that's my favorite heavy hitter of 2018. In terms of vendor, and brand awareness as well as product consistency, Kalm with Kava sits on the top of that list for 2018. I think that can be attributed to the many kava bars that now serve KWK products as well as his recognition on social media, reddit and amazon.

    Highest quality extract of 2018 would be BKH for his new product.

    FijiFreshKava - Most artisan product. Hand pounded waka was fantastic.

    Gourmet Hawaiian Kava - Most generous kava sales.

    I've not been too deeply in the loop this last year, but 2019 leaves a whole 343 days to sample more :)
    firefly and BulamamatoNCIRVCKKPC like this.
  8. Zaphod

    Zaphod Kava Enthusiast

    (1)I am going to say that FijiFreshkava was a delightful new comer. I only tried the waka and it was a real head ringer. Wish I could have gotten more.
    (2) The last few batches of Nambawan have been stellar. Very relaxing.
    (3) RoH deserves a shout out for attempting the fresh kava delivery. I have not tried it and it still has some kinks to work out, but any vendor trying something new should be commended.
    (4) Squanch and GHK continue to deliver solid kava, at a great price....but this is not something new to 2018, this is just a constant.
  9. fait

    fait Position 5 Hard Support

    Takka for this! :)
    Consistency is something that should be applauded. Squanch and GHK would not be considered great vendors if they have glaring problems with service, their products, or any other curve ball they couldn't handle. Ultimately people want change for the better but when that's not possible or not even desirable (because "better/best" is a very subjective term), it's great when a vendor doesn't make things worse.
    Zaphod likes this.
  10. Paul Peno

    Paul Peno Member

    Well I am pretty much a newcomer to Kava but ive tried a few so far.
    Tongan Family Reserve
    Kavafied Supreme
    Kavafied Tongan
    BKH Borogu

    My favourites so far have been Squanch, Supreme and Nambawan.

    Infact, Supreme mixed with Nambawan is lovely, that's what I'm drinking tonight.
  11. jim lahey

    jim lahey Shamanic Herbalist

    Definitely for my #1 the (now going to be) regular offered fresh frozen from ROH, even though it isn't as strong as i like, the taste is much better than dry powder. #2 would have to goto Ambae kava from Kava time. If im not mistaken it comes from Fiji and it has been the only kava from Fiji to actually get me krunk. I tend to love vanuatu kava.
    Kojo Douglas and Intrepidus_dux like this.
  12. _byron

    _byron Member

    Fiji Fresh Kava, BHK Co2, RoH Fresh kava , and Ambae kava from Kavatime are my nominees for new products of 2018.

    FYI, Ambae's kava is still available and imo the same quality. Very oily grog.
    Intrepidus_dux likes this.
  13. nabanga

    nabanga Kava Enthusiast

    There was a relative "flood" of ambae melomelo last year as everyone pulled whatever they had in the ground before leaving, however old. It also grows on neighbouring maewo but as the population of that island just doubled, there probably isnt enough to export.

    My vote would be for 5 star. Whilst I don't have access to all the vendors you do in the US, 5-star is the best dry kava I've come across in 25 years - strong and clean.

    Sent from my SM-G965F using Tapatalk
    Intrepidus_dux likes this.
  14. Krunkie McKrunkface

    Krunkie McKrunkface Kava Enthusiast

    IMO best new kava of 2018 was the Fiji Fresh Lawena.

    Also, though the price of Tikaram's Kava Tonga went up, I found the quality did as well and it is now quite acceptable for plain old drinking or, as always, mixing with Fijian waka, a blend I find most delightful, on as many occasions as I can engineer.
    BulamamatoNCIRVCKKPC likes this.
  15. Atticus

    Atticus :)

    Is there a way that we could create a voting type of thing where all the forum members vote for categories for each year awards?
  16. Smoi

    Smoi SKOL

    Hello all
    I am usually Ballin. Sometimes traditional prep. But I started out some years back with micro. Lately ive really enjoyed it again. So ide like to see what the micro lovers are loving. My standby is KWK loa waka. Strong and taste and smells delightful. Samoan is good. Pouni ono is great. Taste and smell are great. Ill usually start with Pouni ono and slowly change over to loa waka. Or half loa, half pouni for just a pinch more headiness. GHK like usuall has great medium and micro. Cactus is good....just a little bit less potent, but Ono is a staple in my house. 11 yr waka, ive only had once. Strong with a different taste. But good. My vote goes to Kwk loa waka. Micro anyway. Any micro lovers have a opinion on the micros out there?
  17. Smoi

    Smoi SKOL

    And my apologies to Kojo Douglas. I know your not the biggest micro fan. Chiefs choice, kava Tonga, mahakea, and maybe Nangol all pretty new to me, and very good grind. In some part due to Kavasseur. So thank you.
  18. Kojo Douglas

    Kojo Douglas Kava Enthusiast

    Lol. No, I’m not a big fan of micro. I’m pretty strictly traditional prep only these days
  19. readyman

    readyman Member

    anyone tried the flavored kavas from kavatime
  20. Skywalker

    Skywalker Kava Enthusiast

    Yeah micro kills my skin and makes me puke. No. Bueno.

    I think that’s why I left kava for three years. I had a teensy bit of micro left from three years ago. Oh my. It didn’t agree with me.