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Kava Preparation Large tanoa brewing and potency


Kava Enthusiast
Hello. I have a plan with my friend to brew a pound of Squanch waka this Tuesday. We will knead the kava together, and freeze the rest to keep for ourselves. I have very fond memories of when we did this last year. I thought I'd ask why it seemed more potent than the numbers would suggest.

If I have 45g kava brewed in any amount of water in an evening, I am fine, very happy with that serving size. However, brewing 454g kava and then drinking one-tenth of the resulting brew threw me for a surprise! I was in bed sleeping before the sun set. Is it possible that kavalactones help extract more kavalactones? Maybe there is a science to brewing a large amount at a time.

I also will share that my brewing technique changes seasonally. I will go months at a time brewing one shell at a time. For the past fee months I prepare six to eight shells in one bowl. And I have, still, my big white ceramic kava bowl which I used for close to a year to brew liters and liters in one go. What do you all think? has this been true for you as well?


our Roots run deep
this past couple weeks we've been going big batch all day grog making, save some money and reduce the huge backlog of frozen makas. so far things are going great! partners dermo has really cleared up, as well my hands and '3rd eye patch' gone.

I do believe more water helps, there is a sweet spot to find though as I truly dislike watery kava. also have determined using boiling water poured over frozen makas then blend on high for couple minutes really gets a very strong brew for amounts used. I actually misreported in recent Friday thread about amount of water we're using now. it's approx two to three big cups of makas then fill blender with boiling water, about three cups, run on high for 2 minutes, pour half into strainer bag then top off blender with cold water and blend another 2 min. add to strainer then fill blender with cold water to rinse out any remaining and pour into strainer. all told it's about 10 cups water.

anyways, I do feel kava suspension in water requires more water to really get a full dose from whatever amount used. with single serving size I use about 40 grams kava to a cup of water but I don't really knead it at all, just a final squeeze after fast agitate/ jiggle strain bag in water for couple minutes not only gave me excellent shell, but also a second strong one (never really got a good second shell before this method) and sometimes a real decent third shell from strong ones like Squanch waka and GHK Ikaika and PapaKea.

with big bowl grog I knead squeeze squish and full body press the chit out of it for 10 minutes.

and it stays on the counter for hours gaining no bacterial taste which I'm pretty sensitive to...

and a damn strong all day brew it is!


Kava Enthusiast
Thank you hightides42 for taking time and responding. My kava ceremony with friend was excellent. Wholesome.

I arrived at his home after he finished work and showered. We had about two and a half hours of daylight left.

We talked and caught up, then I put the roots on the table and rinsed my strainer. I used the biggest bowl we have. Dumped more than half a pound of fresh Fijian waka roots, right from a sealed, never before opened package of Squanch, into the strainer. Then, carefully making sure not to spill any root into the water, I added a generous portion of Lawena, for balance.

i squeezed the kava in the water as best as I know how. He talked on the phone with his womanly partner and I played with the cats. We laughed at some memes and videos on the internet, then I rinsed two plastic 1L cups inside and out so that we could dip them in the bowl. We each drank close to half a liter of this kava, sip by sip. It was very very strong, significantly stronger than I usually ever brew kava. This is due to the root:water ratio. It was near 300g root to 2500ml water, traditional prep for fifteen minutes. My strainer would not have held more. I spilled a dry root, wet root clumps, and kava on the table. Luckily I had brought a rag with me for this reason.

After playing with the cats, we filled the cups to the top and went out. Walked up the road. Crossed a highway. I noticed I was really feeling it, and spilling more than I could drink. A local neighbor who was working on his truck asked, "What are you boys sippin on?"
"Kava. It's made from a root. It's mostly relaxing" my friend says. He nods, says he has not heard of it, and we continue. I enjoy the sunset and feed the blackflies over a three mile walk. Near the end, we stopped into a store for some bread and cashews to snack on. The cashiers had no problem letting us leave our drinks at the counter. We went to his mother's home, played with dogs, and got a ride back home. Overall, I felt the kava was nice to have, and I was so full from the kava that I did not have any more until much later, when I brewed a small shell of Lawena at home.

I will check out the thread from Friday where you describe your water amounts for making kava, @hightides42 . Beautiful photo. Is it possible that blending the roots is a cause of dermo in your partner's situation? Two to three cups of makas sounds like a decent amount if you did not squeeze and knead them through the first wash, I would believe much of the kava essence is left in. I know everyone has a unique prep method, for me what works best is squeezing the roots in water/underwater repeatedly. It's as though the essence is squeezed out into the water. Bula!


Avg. Dosage: 8 Tbsp. (58g)
Review Maestro
in my experience, drinking with a friend and making double my usual batch, then only drinking half of it, always seems stronger. It’s the same root:water ratio and you’d expect it to be about the same…but I always notice an increased potency-per-shell when I do it in double.
(And I like it ::chugger::)