Melo Melo Kava Cultivar

Melo Melo: The Melomelo Kava Cultivar Spotlight

What is Kava?

The people of the Pacific Islands have used the Kava plant for centuries for its relaxing and social effects. Manufacturers make Kava from the roots of the plant. This process actively dehydrates the roots and then pulverizes them into fine dust. Mixing the resulting powder with water creates a consumable beverage. 

Many different varieties or cultivars of kava exist, each with its unique characteristics and effects. Farmers on the island of Ambae in Vanuatu grow the MeloMelo cultivar.


About MeloMelo Kava

The government of Vanuatu has certified Melomelo as a noble kava cultivar, meaning it's recognized for its safety and absence of harmful compounds. Specifically, 'chemotype' refers to the unique chemical makeup of a plant, which in the case of kava, defines its various effects and strengths. The balanced and consistent chemotype in noble kava cultivars like Melomelo ensures a reliable and safe experience for consumers.

Kavalactones are the active ingredients in kava that produce its effects, and the specific chemotype of a kava plant determines the composition and concentration of these kavalactones. In Melomelo, the chemotype is characterized by a high concentration of kavain, one of the most sought-after kavalactones for its uplifting and euphoric effects, highlighting the significance of chemotype in shaping the overall experience with kava.

The people of Ambae have purposefully cultivated all kinds of kava, including Melomelo, for centuries. They selected and propagated the plants that had the best qualities and effects.

The term "Melomelo" originates from Bislama, the national language of Vanuatu. Bislama enriches the name with cultural significance and meaning. The name symbolizes a state of being dreamy or sleepy. This reflects the smooth and mild but still pleasant effect of Melomelo. The effect can induce a state of calmness, relaxation, and tranquility.

Melomelo is distinguished by its high concentration of kavain, a key kavalactone that contributes to the cultivar's unique chemotype. Kavain is known for producing kava's uplifting and euphoric effects. This chemotype also includes other kavalactones in specific ratios, which together create the distinctive and pleasant effects of Melomelo, differentiating it from other cultivars.

Melomelo is one of the most popular kava cultivars in Vanuatu. Nakamals, or kava bars, commonly sell it throughout the country. Nakamals serve as establishments where individuals convene to consume kava and engage in socialization.

Kava drinking is an important part of the culture and tradition of Vanuatu and other Pacific Island nations. It facilitates the sharing of stories and experiences,  promotion of peace and harmony, and connections with others.

Vanuatu Lagoon

Effects and Flavor Profile of MeloMelo Kava

Melomelo's sweet and fruity taste distinctly sets it apart from other kava cultivars. In contrast, many other cultivars exhibit a more earthy and sometimes bitter flavor profile. This palatability makes Melomelo a preferred choice for both kava connoisseurs and newcomers.

Melomelo garners acclaim for its well-balanced profile, distinguishing it in the realm of kava cultivars. At lower doses, it offers a soothing effect. This is ideal for managing stress and anxiety. Its suitability for daytime or early evening use stems from Melomelo's ability to induce relaxation without causing significant sedation.

In contrast, larger doses of Melomelo can produce a more pronounced sedative effect, conducive to relaxation and sleep. This versatility makes Melomelo a unique and flexible option for various needs.

MeloMelo's chemotype sets it apart from other kava varieties like Borogu or Waka, which have different chemotypes leading to more energizing effects or alternate flavor profiles. This is a testament to how variations in chemotype can influence the overall sensory and psychoactive qualities of different kava cultivars.

Incorporating Melomelo into beverages such as the Mango Coconut Kava Lassi (recipe below) adds a unique flavor and moderates the strength of the kava's effects. It is an enjoyable and adaptable option for a range of occasions.


Vanuatu Map

Where to Buy Melomelo Kava

Melomelo kava is becoming more widely available outside Vanuatu, thanks to the efforts of kava enthusiasts who have sourced it from local farmers and brought it to other markets. Many online shops and physical stores specializing in kava products offer Melomelo.

Many kava bars in various parts of the world serve it also. Melo Melo Kava Bar in Santa Cruz, California and Karuna Kava in Boise, Idaho are two great kava bars that offer this cultivar.

Karuna Kava and Melo Melo Kava Bar locations aim to recreate the art and community of kava drinking by offering a variety of kava cultivars from different regions including Melomelo.

Mango Coconut Kava Lassi Recipe With Fresh Ingredients

Melomelo is a kava cultivar that has a long history and a bright future. It serves as a testament to the wisdom and skill of the people who have cultivated it for generations. It also offers diversity and richness as a plant and a beverage. Melomelo offers a smooth and mild but still pleasant effect that can help anyone relax and enjoy life more.

An interesting Kava Cocktail creation is the Kava Mango Lassi. The Mango Lassi is a popular Indian drink usually made with coconut milk, coconut water, yogurt, and mango nectar. The coconut milk and coconut water thin out the yogurt a bit. Additionally, the mango imparts an unbeatable sweet fruitiness.

Make your Melomelo kava using the blender method with your coconut milk. Allow to cool and mix with sweetened vanilla yogurt and mango nectar.

The beverage has a delightful and silky texture, and the recipe can be altered using a variety of flavors like strawberry and blueberry. This recipe offers an exceptional and straightforward method to enhance the flavor of kava!

From LA to Manila: A Mango-Coconut Dessert Series Featuring Kava as the Main Ingredient

Check out our dairy free recipe for a popular mango coconut dessert. Made from Los Angeles to the Bay Area to the Philippines. Interestingly, that dessert also goes by the name Melo Melo.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Kava is a popular plant in the Pacific Islands known for its relaxing and social effects.
  2. Melomelo is a noble kava cultivar from Ambae, Vanuatu, known for its balanced and consistent chemotype. It has a high concentration of kavain and sweet, fruity flavor. It induces calmness, relaxation, and tranquility.
  3. Kavas like Melomelo are an important part of the culture and tradition of Vanuatu and other Pacific Island nations. They promote peace, harmony, and social interaction.
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