DrinkRoot Review: Best Instant Kava Brand?

DrinkRoot is a small, specialized kava company. They only carry two products — a heady instant kava powder and a heavy instant kava powder. Both are well worth the money.

If you’re a beginner looking to get into kava, DrinkRoot is a great place to start.

1. Price & Value


DrinkRoot is competitively priced. The average cost per dose is around $5 — which is on par with most dehydrated kava products of this quality. There are certainly cheaper options, but the potency of these products makes it well worth the added cost.

2. Product Lineup


This is one category where DrinkRoot falls flat — they only carry two products — both in the same category. There are no coarse kava powders, micronized powders, capsules, or tinctures. The names of their products are also somewhat confusing, and the layout of their product pages is a bit difficult to navigate.

DrinkRoot used to carry a ready-made kava juice, but this has since been discontinued.

3. Product Potency


The potency of both DrinkRoot instant kavas are exceptionally potent — hands down, some of the strongest instant kava I’ve tried.

Most of the dehydrated kava on the market calls for a dose of 1 tsp per cup of water, but I almost always need to add more to get the effects I’m looking for. This is the only dehydrated powder I’ve used that delivers the characteristic kava effects at the suggested dose.

4. Customer Service


The customer service from this company is perfectly sufficient, albeit a little bit slow. I sent the first email on Monday and didn’t hear back until Wednesday.

Overall, the team was clearly knowledgeable about their products and keen to help.

About the Company: DrinkRoot

DrinkRoot is a small, family-owned kava vendor based in Brooklyn, New York. They specialize in making instant, dehydrated kavas from Vanuatu kava cultivars.

The company was created out of frustration with the instant kava industry — which is something we certainly empathize with.

There’s a lot of problems with micronized instant kava (not a true instant kava) and kava extracts (lots of side effects). There weren’t many options for high-quality dehydrated instant kava juice — so the DrinkRoot team got to work and developed two products of their own.

We can honestly say DrinkRoot hit the nail on the head with these products.

DrinkRoot carries two instant kavas — both made from dehydrated juice of Vanuatu kava cultivars.

What is Instant Kava?

There are two different types of so-called instant kava. DrinkRoot only sells dehydrated kava juice — which is, by far, the better option if you’re interested in a true instant kava.

Micronized kavas are more of a hybrid between a true instant kava and the traditional kava powders.

1. Micronized “Instant” Kava

Micronized kava is the most common form of instant kava. It’s made by grinding the kava into a very fine powder and then sieving the tiny fibers out of the mix.

Micronized kava is often sold as instant kava because it dissolves better than coarse ground kava powder — but it’s far from perfect. It can take a lot of effort stirring the powder into the water to get it to (mostly) dissolve, and there will always be some irritating fibers left in the brew. These fibers irritate the mouth and throat and can lead to nausea or bloating.

While micronized kava has its place, I recommend you still strain it through a kava strainer bag before you drink it — just to make sure all the irritating fibers are removed from the mix.

2. Dehydrated Kava Juice

Dehydrated kava juice is made by juicing large batches of fresh kava root and then using a freeze-drying process to turn it into a powder.

There are no fibers or plant parts leftover in the final product, and it rapidly dissolves when added to water.

For this reason, dehydrated kava juice is considered a true “instant” kava. There’s no straining needed, and this type of instant kava is unlikely to result in any irritation to the digestive tract.

Dehydrating kava juice is an expensive and labor-intensive process — which can make it feel expensive at first. The tradeoff is that you only need a small amount to prepare a strong cup of kava with minimal effort.

On average, this type of instant kava costs around $4 to $5 per cup for high-quality stuff. There are cheaper, low-grade instant kava, but these aren’t generally worth the money because you’ll need three or four cups to feel anything.

DrinkRoot Kava Product Reviews

DrinkRoot carries two products — a heavy instant kava and a heady instant kava. They used to sell a ready-made kava and coconut juice but recently discontinued it. Most likely, the shelf life was too low to be worth making anymore.

Here’s what we think of DrinkRoot products.

Product Name Effect Profile Total Cost
Instant Connoisseur: Premium Dehydrated Kava Juice Heavy $25–$89
The Raw Epicure: Premium Dehydrated Raw Kava Juice Heady $27–$52

1. Instant Connoisseur: Premium Dehydrated Kava Juice

This dehydrated instant kava powder is made from locally sourced Vanuatu kava roots.

The recommended dose of this stuff is listed as one level teaspoon — which I found to be more than enough to feel its effects. At 1.5 or 2 tsp, this stuff is very strong, especially for instant kava.

Because this kava isn’t micronized, it dissolves very quickly into a cup of warm water. The taste is mildly bitter, with some spiciness in the aftertaste. I found adding a small amount of milk and honey made it much more palatable.

The specific cultivar for this product isn’t listed, but the chemocode is reported to be 243561 and 243516. This chemocode matches the profile for the same Borogu kava as Bula House Kava and a native Vanuatu cultivar called Tau Kava.

This kava is a group G kava cultivar, which is characterized by high levels of DHK and kavain.

This kava has a heavy profile, with some heady effects early on. You’ll feel euphoric and social at first, but the effects will gradually shift towards a heavier profile. Your muscles relax, your mind feels at ease, and you may feel as though you’re either floating or sinking into your chair.

This is a great kava to use in the evenings before bed. It’s a powerful stress-reducer and muscle-relaxer, which could make it useful for muscle or back pain.

Technical Details:

  • Origin — Vanuatu
  • Total Kavalactone Content — 6-10%
  • Effect Profile — Heavy
  • Strength — Strong
  • Grind — Instant (Dehydrated Juice)
  • Flavor Profile — Bitter & Spicy
  • Kava Code — 243561 & 243516
  • Recommended Experience Level — All Levels
  • Most Common Side-Effect — Nausea

Cost Breakdown:

Name Total Cost Cost per Gram Cost per 5 Gram Dose (1 tsp)
Instant Connoisseur: Premium Dehydrated Kava Juice $25–$89 $0.89–$1.00 $4.45–$5.00

2. The Raw Epicure: Premium Dehydrated Raw Kava Juice

This is the heady offering from DrinkRoot. It’s the same quality as their “Instant Connosiur” blend but with a more euphoric, uplifting, and energized effect profile. This is the better option if you plan to drink kava during the day. It’s very unlikely to make you feel sleepy or lethargic even after drinking several cups of this stuff throughout the day.

The kava cultivar used to make this kava isn’t listed, but the chemocode (423516) matches the profile for a strain called Borogu Temit — which is considered a more “premium” version of the standard Vanuatuan Borogu kava.

This is also the same chemocode for three Fijian kava strains — Matakaro Belavu, Honolulu, and Dokobana Vula — all of which are considered top-shelf, rare kava strains.

The 423 chemocode makes this strain an H group kava — which is characterized by the high kavain and DHK content. The effects of this kava are very pleasant — definitely worth a try if you like heady kava.

Technical Details:

  • Origin — Vanuatu
  • Total Kavalactone Content — 7%
  • Effect Profile — Heady
  • Strength — Strong
  • Grind — Dehydrated Juice
  • Flavor Profile —
  • Kava Code — 423516
  • Recommended Experience Level — All Levels
  • Most Common Side-Effect — Nausea

Cost Breakdown:

Name Total Cost Cost per Gram Cost per 5 Gram Dose (1 tsp)
The Raw Epicure: Premium Dehydrated Raw Kava Juice $27–$52 $1.04–$1.08 $5.20

Final Thoughts: Top-Notch Instant Kava Brand

DrinkRoot focuses on just one product category — dehydrated instant kava juice. This specialization has paid off. DrinkRoot some of the best instant kavas we’ve tried to date.

They’re strong, competitively priced, and taste surprisingly palatable for a dehydrated kava juice.

If you’re a beginner kava drinker or merely want a product that’s as easy as possible to prepare, DrinkRoot kava powder is well worth the money. Preparing this stuff is as simple as micing about 1 tsp (5 g) into a cup of warm water and giving it a stir.

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