Sunday, February 12, 2012

New Honey Lemon Kava Extract from Paradise Kava

Briefly visiting the United States from Ghana, I was asked by several Kava vendors to review some of their new products. The first set of samples I received were from Paradise Kava - a new Honey Lemon extract, a bag of PNG Isa (to be reviewed in coming days), and some experimental salves and calming oils. I had a chance to talk to Adil Ghiasi from Paradise Kava on the phone. "I'm really proud of our new Kava extract Doug," he told me "this is the culmination of years of trying to perfect this stuff." It is remarkably different from Paradise Kava's previous Kava extracts, most notably in its flavor and appearance.

Pictured below are the previous extract (2011) on the left and the newest extract (2012) on the right:

I was surprised, particularly when comparing the two extracts side by side, at how much unlike the new extract is compared to its predecessor. In terms of texture, flavor, and effects the 2012 extract is so fundamentally different from the previous one that it almost seems like the concept is altogether different. And in some ways it is. The newest extract packs much more of a punch than its previous manifestation - for example, it produces a level of numbness that would be sufficient for having a root canal done. The effects are immediate (not that having to wait a minute or two is altogether intolerable) as the newer extract is designed for immediate absorption. On top of all that, it produces a much more prolonged, sustained buzz. According to Adil Ghiasi from Paradise Kava, there is a higher concentration of desirable kavalactones such as kavain and dihidrokavain in the 2012 batch. It is also processed using a new method that produces a denser, more integrated product with less granule. So it is tasty, smooth, and strong - but doesn't have double-bonded kavalactones (such as those found in "Tudei" Kavas) that you feel the next day.

In terms of flavor, I'm a little bit torn between the newest batch and the previous batch. I feel like they should both be offered. The 2011 extract is much sweeter than the newest manifestation, which is really quite strongly flavored and tastes more like Kava than the previous one did. In fact, it has a kind of spicy undertone that surprised me when I first tried it. I was so fond of the 2011 batch that I used to gobble it up like candy in the evening time when I was winding down. I don't picture myself doing that with something that deeply impacts me after a couple pea-sized doses. That is not to say, of course, that it doesn't taste good - it certainly does.

Paradise Kava's 2012 batch of extract is stronger than the 2011 batch, which means that you are getting more kavalactones per dose than before. Nonetheless, they have managed to keep the price down, making this a great deal. If you have a sweet tooth and a craving for strong Kava, this new extract is for you...


  1. Yes, welcome back, I look forward to your future reviews!

  2. I'm actually happy to hear that the sweetness was toned down, I didn't like that at all when I tried their last batch after your review in 2011. I'll have to get some of this now that it tastes more 'peppery'

    Though the honey chocolate tasted awesome with how sweet it was, I hope that didn't get toned down too. 'Cause I can't imagine honey-chocolate-peppery taste. Doesn't sound too good.

    - Kavalover

  3. Indeed. Always look forward to reading what you have to say. Waiting on my batch of this to come in as I type. Also wanted to let you know that when I ordered from Paradise Kava they sent me an e-mail asking if I wanted the 2012 batch since they noticed I had been to your blog. Neat!

  4. I'll have to maybe try this... Last time I got the extract I did not get much of anything from it... So I'm sticking with regular and instant kava instead.

  5. The 2012 batch is simpky more effective because it has more kava. Since we do not add sugar to our raw honey, lower sweetness is the tradeoff for more potency.
    Joey, we're sending you a free sample tomorrow of our 2012 batch, hope you'll give it another shot!

  6. Thanks guys!

  7. I have never tried an instant kava before and i have always be turned off because of people saying the powder is stronger and with very limited funds i have to make a wise purchase. I have insomnia which has exacerbated my anxiety.

    ☼The Martyr☼

  8. I must say i'm slightly disappointed with the 2012 batch. Allthough the taste is very agreeable, it simply lacks the punch that'll make it worth it. The recommended 1 g. dosage isn't enough to make you, or maybe thats just me, remotely krunkified. Love your work - keep it up.

    Adam - Denmark