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The Kava Bars of Port Vila

Ramblings of the Kava Tourist!

One of our first clients is known throughout the Pacific as the “Kava Tourist”. When on tour, he lives and breathes kava from 9am in the morning through to the wee hours. We were fortunate to meet him many years ago at a kava bar (or “nakamal” as they are known in Port Vila) and maintained a good friendship. We thought we’d post some of his musings on the local kava bars in Port Vila. 

Sonos Nakamal – Pango

Opening Notes – Smell of the salt water quickly overcome with the smell of the BO of local surfers and reprobates. Could well be a scene from Sea of Darkness, but the pleasant food and mild kava make it appear a lighter environment than it is. Skylarking and carry-on at a premium compared to other nakamals. With the mix of clientele comes a large variety of conversations!

Random Elluk Rd Nakamal 

Opening Notes – An alluring transcendental Autumn poem of gentian, coriander with a cool Scandinavian forest breeze giving a fruity moss. Truth beknown it is simply Diablo pulling up a chair beside you cutting a deal. A 4th shell & you realise the hallucinations are probably real life – was that really a thrashing mannequin being dragged into the toilet block …then you remember you had the chicken

Roundhaus Nakamal Freshwota

Opening Notes – Aroma meets entry requirements to a Juggalo Festival. This kava is of a vivisection with a Lawn Mower. First shell & you pry the shovel from your face. A 2nd shell to witness time run in reverse. A 3rd shell & you will get a look into Richard Ramirez’s car boot. A great drop & friendly staff.

Trump Nakamal 

Leave your drone in the provided locker on arrival. Needing a pagan ritual & don’t have the blood of your enemies handy ?? Rock in here for a shell tonight & don’t kid yourself…your ritual verses are terrible in comparison with the virtuosity of this Shakespearean dream child. This kava has sweety jam flavours which cleverly hide the impact of a Semi-trailer. Mouth puckering tannins so dry, you will involuntarily suck in all four cheeks simultaneously while it finishes with the smoothness and balance of a well-spanked arse!

Putin Nakamal

We’re calling it Putin Nakamal as it’s beside Trump Nakamal 

Opening Notes : Wafts of a warm medieval village bone broth interrupted with a heavy fragrance of casual violence & machismo, this is where hope curls up to die alone. Brutish & senile for purchase only by those whom display both. Come for the Kava – stay for the wheelchair

 

Mataroroa Nakamal Freshwater – Opening notes are broken. This nakamal delivers unwanted trust & a fear of open head wounds. Good if you don’t breathe & a fun ride to meet the Cerberus on its home ground. 

Be sure to try the Dirty Bishop when you visit…it’s like a ‘hot – don’t touch’ sign on a servery window, you know you will.

Vale Vale Beach Nakamal, Pango Rd

 

Tightly focused, with a beam of linzer torte, bitter cherry, plum sauce and fig fruit laced with licorice snap, singed iron and roasted bay leaf. The long finish has lots of roasted fig, tar and spice notes for extra bass, but the acidity is there & deeply embedded