Thanks very much for all the replies and emails. Just letting you know that we now have five people for the free samples. We may do this again later in the year so will let you know again then. Thanks!
Here is my review of the sample Mel Melo which Classic Kava was kind enough to provide.
The product is packaged professionally in a sealed heat resistant resealable pouch with expiry date and batch no. which indicates a high level of quality control consistent with being processed in a HACCP accredited facility in Vanuatu.
Upon opening the pouch I was a little apprehensive that the kava looked to be very fine, almost micronised. I have had problems in the past with extremely finely ground kava powder as it tends to bring me perilously close to gagging, a classic example being the anaemic strength 'Fijkava' brand which I was unfortunate enough to purchase previously and which stuck like hot tar to the back of my throat. There is almost no aroma to the very white/cream Mel Melo powder which is unusual - perhaps just a hint of cashew? - very pleasant.
For my first session I prepared two tablespoons in approximately 750ml of water and downed 500ml immediately. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the taste which was almost neutral and very chuggable. It's my habit to drink kava around dusk here in tropical North Queensland - its a special time where you can enjoy the late sunset and the cloud reflected colours it produces, along with the bird life which noisily get ready to settle down for the night.
Almost immediately I could feel the effects coming on - a powerful but at the same time light body load acceleration into a nice euphoric cerebral state. All kava drinkers experience heightened auditory awareness, and this Melo Melo is very notable in this regard - It sounded like the local cicadas had plugged into amps!
I decided to keep the balance of the first wash to one side for later that evening and did a 500ml second wash. Immediately after consuming the second wash the strength and intensity of effects markedly increased with noticeable body load and sedation along with a continued pleasant state of mind. At this point I was in kava heaven and decided to put the balance of the first wash in the fridge for the next day and just enjoy the rest of the evening listening to my favourite music.
Unlike other Melo Melo I have tried in the past, the effects of consumption seemed to last a lot longer. I slept very well with lucid dreams. Morning after I was in a pleasant clear frame of mind with relaxed body muscles which really helped with my regular 5km walk!
All in all a very, very good experience. It's a beguiling, unique kava and one that deserves further experimentation. On one hand you have the classic Melo Melo effects of euphoric/uplifting and muscle relaxing effects with the option of stepping into the heavier sedated soothing, full body relaxing effects with a further quick bowl or two. Whatever you do, a common thread of positive , pleasant mind relaxation seems to be a corner stone of this impressive kava mix.
I highly recommend it and intend to get me some more!