Every weekend in New Zealand, approximately 25,000 people gather to drink kava, a psychoactive brew made from the roots and stem of a plant native to the Pacific. A tradition older than Christ, they drink deep in to the night, and often consume up to 32 times the recommended pharmacological dose. Many drive home. But what is kava, and what effect does it actually have on cognition?
I drank a bunch and attempted to find out. Read about it in issue 141 of New Zealand Geographic magazine.