What is Brown Kava?

Kava Guides

Fun fact: If you enjoy kava, one type served at just about every kava bar is brown kava. So what is brown kava exactly? Well, it is the most commonly served and consumed among kava drinkers. Noble kava, Brown Label, and traditional kava are some of the other names used for Brown kava.

Although it is commonly used, several factors make this a premium type of kava. What makes this kava special is that it is a varietal grown in a specific region of Fiji. The team here at Kava-Bula drinks this type of kava on the regular. Flavor, overall effects, and cultural significance are 3 distinct characteristics of brown kava.

Consider this the go-to kava you will find in most kava bars in the States. Ideally, if you are new to drinking kava, this is what you should start on. It is my staple at all the kava bars I frequent because I know what to expect. No surprises, just a consistently good varietal that has most Kava drinkers coming back for more.

Let’s take a further look at this premium kava and why its distinct characteristics make it the number one choice for kava drinkers both new and old.

Characteristic #1: Flavor

Kava is an acquired taste. One could say it takes time to warm up to its earthy taste. It is a little rough at first but if you continue to drink kava, your taste buds begin to develop a refinement for it. It is kind of like coffee, beer, or wine in that aspect.

Taking the time to develop a pallet for kava is well worth it in the end. Brown kava generally has flavor notes that can be described as earthy as well as nutty with undertones of bitterness. I would say it is pretty balanced in flavor. Other varietals such as green kava have a very distinct flavor that is quite strong.

Since kava is a part of the pepper family (Piper Mesthysticum), you will experience a peppery taste. Brown kava is relatively mild with peppery notes.  Tudie kava would have a more pronounced peppery flavor profile in comparison to brown kava. It has more of an intense flavor and can linger on your palette.

This is why brown kava is more of a preferred choice. It simply is easier to drink from beginning to end. It lacks that overpowering taste that others can yield. Usually, when you have kava that has an overpowering flavor profile it will have a stronger effect.

This brings us to our following characteristics. The overall effects of brown kava in comparison to others are preferred. Let’s find out why.

Characteristic #2: Overall effects

Noble brown kava has more of a balanced and calming effect. This is a great way for one to unwind from a stressful day. The reason why it gives you a feeling of calm and relaxation is because of its main active ingredient kavalactones.

Kavalactones when metabolized in the body can lower your heart rate. Studies have found that kava can have a favorable effect on reflex vagal control of heart rate. This is also great for people who have any kind of anxiety disorder. Lowering your heart rate helps alleviate stress and other symptoms that people with anxiety suffer from.

Brown kava also helps induce relaxation which is very good for people that are experiencing any kind of insomnia. I can attest to this as I have used kava to help me sleep since I do experience insomnia from time to time. The sedation is light without the feeling of heavy side effects or grogginess.

The relaxation also alludes to light euphoria without any cognitive impairments. This is a good quality and characteristic of brown kava in comparison to others that may yield more potent side effects that can go against the balance and overall effects one can experience.

The positive energy and overall effects create a rich community amongst kava drinkers. This embodies kava culture. Let’s look further into this as our last characteristic of Brown kava.

Characteristic #3: Cultural Significance

Brown kava is also known as traditional kava. Traditional in the sense that it embodies much of the cultural ceremonies that Polynesians still practice today. It has been used for centuries by villages of the South Pacific islands for many different types of social gatherings and rituals.

This type of kava has been cultivated for years and has a special significance to its farmers and cultivators. The Polynesian Creation story speaks of how kava was first introduced to it native people of Fiji and how it was deemed the “drink of knowledge” by Dengai, the god of kava.

There is a sacred significance of brown kava to the people of Fiji. It is the birthplace of kava because it correlates with the creation story. it has kept its ceremonial importance to this day. It brings people together and creates a rich community around it. We can look at all of the great reasons kava is beneficial and how it influences people with wellness and positivity.


We can see how Noble brown kava is easiest to drink and has overall beneficial effects and cultural significance are characteristics of why it is the most preferred and commonly consumed amongst kava drinkers.

The team here at Kava-Bula actively seeks out trying different types of kava. I do enjoy trying different types of kava from time to time with the team. One commonality we all share is at the end of the day, brown kava is the preferred choice.

Don’t take my word for it though. I recommend trying things for yourself and finding out what all the hype is about. If you are new to Kava hopefully this has given you some insight on trying it for the first time.

If you have enjoyed what you have read, be sure to subscribe to our free newsletter. We have new content coming out every month. Knowledge is power so until next time my friends. Always remember to drink well and live your life to the fullest. Bula!


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