Bula! Billings’ First Kava Bar Brings a Taste of the Pacific Islands to Town | Local news


“It’s like a tree. You just nibble it.

At a time of universal sync, Shane’s last fight was in Florida, where he would run into a kava bar as well.

Bring the Kava to Billings

Thunder Fichter puts ground kava root into a ball before creating a kava drink on Tuesday, November 2, 2021 at Kava Roots in Billings.

RYAN BERRY Billings Gazette

Kava roots

Kava prepared in a coconut shell at Kava Roots in Billings.

RYAN BERRY, Billings Gazette

Shane wasn’t the first to bring kava to Billings, in fact all he had to do was Google “kava near me” and found a home in Rehberg Ranch. The company, Kalm with Kava, was founded by Mike Munsel, who launched Monsoon Beverages LLC and the Kalm with Kava brand in 2010.

Born in Billings, Munsel frequently traveled to the South Pacific to meet farmers growing kava, and also had ties to kava bar owners across the United States. He was only 39 when he died suddenly on May 1, 2020, according to his obituary.

Shane and Thunder connected with Munsel before his death and began sharing Kalm with Kava products with their friends and family.

“A lot of people like to go to the bar because they get that social feeling, and it’s an alternative to drinking,” Shane described. He opened Kava Roots in late 2020 with his business partner Koby Jeffers, also an MMA fighter who hung out at that same kava bar in Florida.

Kava roots

The entrance to Kava Roots on Tuesday, November 2, 2021 in Billings.

RYAN BERRY Billings Gazette

“It was just such a great experience, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it,” Jeffers said. “Everyone is complaining that there is nothing to do here, so I wanted to bring something completely different to the scene.”


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