MUSICEYES & EDGE

BULA KAVA HOUSE

MUSICEYES & EDGE
BULA KAVA HOUSE
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Clap once to awaken good spirits. Chug. Clap twice to chase the bad spirits away. I was instructed to do this by Judd Rench, scuba dive instructor turned kava bar owner. Have you heard of kava? It is a watery drink, reminiscent of dirt, and is an alluring alternative for other social beverages. Accompanied by a pineapple slice “chaser”, we both downed our bowls (served in a coconut shell) and performed our claps.Almost instantaneously, my tongue began to numb but surprisingly, this did not cause any sort of panic attack on my part. I felt calm -- perhaps a little bubblier than my usual self. “This usually lasts about 2-3 hours,” Judd explained. He assured me it does not affect mental clarity, is non-addictive, and most importantly, offers no nagging hangover.So, what is it exactly? Kava is a drink that comes from the root of piper methysticum, a close relative to the black pepper plant. It was first domesticated in Vanuatu and is commonly used in Micronesia, Melanesia and Polynesia. The root is soaked in water, stirred, and then the liquid is extracted with a juice press. Bula Kava House offers four different types of kava on a daily basis, each offering different physiological effects (some promising euphoria, others offering extra energy). The recommended amount of kava is 2-3 servings of coconut shells.Bula Kava House provides a relaxing atmosphere. It encourages you to stay a while, with ample seating on comfy couches and outside tables for warmer weather. For those with an appetite, sandwiches and desserts provided by Ohana Hawaiian Cafe are available. For those wanting entertainment, board games, wi-fi and books (many of them travel-related) are available. Live music also happens every Thursday.E+E: Last thing, what’s your favorite thing about Portland?Judd: I like the food. And, I’m a total beach bum and I like how casual Portland is. There are not too many places where you have to wear a jacket. I love that.3115 SE Division StreetPortland, OR 97202Photo Courtesy: Christie Spillane and  Nicole on a MissionWritten by: Sarah Ing