Designer Kava Instant Kava Strains, and Deciding the Best Kava for You.

Designer Kava Instant Kava Strains, and Deciding the Best Kava for You.



The strongest (best) kava is going to be a kava that is particularly high in kavalactones, OR the best kava root would be a kava with a unique make up in it's kavalactones chemotype.

This is assuming the best kava discussion is revolving around potency, not taste. Most drink kava to enjoy the benefits of kava, not because they like the taste- just being honest.

In this article we are going to discuss what makes for the strongest/best kava experience from a subjective standpoint. If you want help picking a variety of kava, try our kava variety quiz or read on and make your own decision.

Designer Kava is extremely selective with our kava root. We may provide instant kava, but it starts with traditional noble kava root from small, grassroots farmers in Vanuatu.

We only use single cultivar strains, and the best of the best.

Rather than competing with farmers, we work with them, offering premium noble kava root that was previously only available to locals or industry insiders.

Through working with local farmers and rigorous quality control, we are constantly screening for the best kava. You can learn more on our "About Us" page.

A little about our process:

Less then 24 hours after harvest, using peeled noble kava roots and our proprietary cold water method, we prepare then dehydrate fresh, green, kava juice into an instant kava powder that you can prepare in seconds.

This method increases the potency of the kava powder, removes fibrous plant matter from the kava root, and preserves freshness- all while allowing you to drink kava without the hassle of preparation. If you would like to learn more about our instant kava powder, here is our article What is Designer Kava?

You can check out this blog about how to brew instant kava vs traditional kava if you want to learn more.


Strongest Kava Strains


The most potent, instant kavas we carry are going to be from the strongest noble kava types, as it all starts with the kava roots. Our instant kava production process is state of the art- but it would be useless without good kava to start off.

What makes the best kava is entirely subjective, but we would wager most are drinking kava root for the effects and relaxing benefits of kava- so we will discuss those.

Keeping that in mind, the best kava would be the strongest, or most potent in this opinion. Beyond that, the chemotype and ratio of kavalactones could make or break the best kava. You can learn about kava chemotypes in our article Different Kava Strains and Kava Cultivars.

Just because a kava is not as high in kavalactones does not mean it is inferior- unique chemotype make ups like that which is seen in kelai can provide awesome experiences, make the kava faster acting, longer acting, etc.


Lets do a few different lists.

As far as a heavy sedative kava for sleep, and the highest overall kavalactone content:

"Midnight" Borogu Tememe Kava

For a cerebral day time experience, we think this is the best kava (despite it not being as high in kavalactone content):

"Creamsicle" Kelai Kava

We go into both of these in detail in a moment, or if you want to read the "More Details for the Connoisseur" tab on the product pages you can learn the most.

As far as balanced kavas, be sure to read on in the two sections below.


Best Heavy Kava


Heavy kava is typically characterized as more of a "body high" with some sedative effects, making them ideal as a evening drink or sleep aid.

Heavy kava is our personal preference, and we were sure to include the very best kava we could get our hands on in this line up... The rare strains we supply are absolute top shelf and are seldom seen on the international market.

Despite the sedative body orientated experience, some do also have heady kava effects, especially the "Daydream" Purple Silese Kava, while the "Midnight" Borogu Tememe Kava is a significantly more sedative body load.

Here are our best heavy kava with some background:

This is our most sedative kava available and highest in % of kavalactones. Some heavy kava are known to be harder on the stomach, but this kava does not come with nausea despite it's strength.

It is exceptionally smooth, and at 18% kavalactone content, this is the strongest experience for drinking kava available. Lots of "muscle melting" body effects without drunkenness. If you are going to drink kava for sleep, this is the one.

origin: Pentecost (Vanuatu)

chemotype: 243516

kavalactones: 18%

effects: heavy kava

This is a strong, heavy but balanced kava and a best seller. It is known as purple due to the coloration of the stem.

Silese kava like other heavy cultivars has strong muscle melting pleasent effects, and although it is on the "heavy" side, this is a sociable kava and can be enjoyed in the daytime with friends. In larger quantities it will certainly make you sleepy.

origin: Malekula, Vanuatu

chemotype: 423651

kavalactones: 15.3%

effects: balanced/heavy kava


Best Heady Kava


Heady kavas are known for there uplifting and cerebral effects with less sleepiness vs other cultivars. These types of kava are popular in social settings often, or during the day as they can be consumed longer without sleep.

A common misconception is that these strains are weaker, that is simply not true. It is a different spectrum of effects.

Our favorite heady kava is widely regarded as the best of the best kava- Kelai. Kelai kava is well known for it's fast acting potent cerebral effects with little sedation.

A heady kava with some balanced body effects is our "Luxury" Tanna Pia Kava, very rarely sold on the international market.

Both of these are exceptionally rare to find outside the islands- Kelai is such a local favorite most of it is consumed right inside kava bars in Vanuatu and it seldom makes it's way out.

Here are our best heady kava with some background:

The most popular kava locally in Vanuatu, known for it's potent fast acting buzz and social recreational consumption. This kava has a very high ratio of kavain to dihydromethysticin kavalactones, perhaps the highest in the world. Explorers and kava scientists alike have called this "The perfect kava."

origin: Epi, Vanuatu

chemotype: 421365

kavalactones: 14.1%

effects: heady

As far as a balanced type of kava, this would certainly fit the description. This particular cultivar comes on slower with relaxing waves but lasts far longer then others.

Strong cerebral effects as well as body relaxation- this type of kava may have a bit less kavalactones (12.7% is still a lot compared to most kava products) then our Midnight Borogu but make no mistake, it is STRONG.

Despite its formidable potency, the pleasant effects of this kava are prominent making it perfect for a relaxing first time drinking kava, as the effects slowly ease on.

origin: Tanna, Vanuatu

chemotype: 426153 

kavalactones: 12.7%

effects: balanced


Overall, it is up to the person consuming to decide what the best kava is. We wanted to shed a bit of light on our offerings, and what makes each unique and let you determine what is best. However, there are hundreds of different types of kava available. We only want the very best, but if you have a suggestion be sure to let us know and we will do our research.

If it is your first time, we have a page on what to expect.

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