Here are relevant references from the Books where Ka-la-na is mentioned.
It is not meant to be anything other than the facts of the matter.
Arrive at your own conclusions.
I wish you well,
After the meal I tasted the drink, which might not inappropriately be described as an almost incandescent wine, bright, dry, and powerful. I learned later it was called Ka-la-na.
Tarnsman of Gor Book 1 Page 26
I drained the last sip of the heady wine in the metal goblet.
Tarnsman of Gor Book 1 Page 34
Lastly, as the culmination of Ar's Planting Feast, and of the greatest importance to the plan of the Council of Ko-ro-ba, a member of the Ubar's family goes to the roof at night, under the three full moons with which the feast is correlated, and casts grain upon the stone and drops of a red winelike drink made from the fruit of the Ka-la-na tree.
Tarnsman of Gor Book 1 Page 68
I lunged for the center of the platform, breaking under my foot a small ceremonial basket filled with grain, kicking from my path a Ka-la-na container, splashing the fermented red liquid across the stone surface. I raced to the pile of stones at the center of the platform, the girl's screaming in my ears. From a short distance away I heard the shouts of men and the clank of arms as warriors raced up the stairs to the roof. Which was the Home Stone? I kicked apart the rocks. One of them must be the Home Stone of Ar, but which? How could I tell it from the others, the Home Stones of those cities which had fallen to Ar?
Yes! It would be the one that would be red with Ka-la-na, that would be sprinkled with the seeds of grain!
He signaled to a boy who carried a skin of Ka-la-na wine over his shoulder. He took the skin of wine from the boy and bit out the horn plug; he then, with the wineskin on his shoulder, held back the head of Elizabeth Cardwell with one hand and with the other shoved the bone nozzle of the skin between her teeth; he tipped the skin and the girl, half choking, swallowed wine; some of the red fluid ran from her mouth and over her body.
When Kamchak thought she had drunk enough he pulled the nozzle from her mouth, pushed back the plug and returned the skin to the boy.
"Give him Ka-la-na wine," prompted Elizabeth.
Aphris got up and fetched not a skin, but a bottle, of wine, Ka-la-na wine, from the Ka-la-na orchards of great Ar itself. She also brought a black, red-trimmed wine crater from the isle of Cos.
"May I serve you?" she asked.
Kamchak's eyes glinted. "Yes," he said.
She poured wine into the crater and replaced the bottle. Kamchak had watched her hands very carefully. She had had to break the seal on the bottle to open it. The crater had been upside down when she had picked it up. If she had poisoned the wine she had certainly done so deftly.
Then she knelt before him in the position of the Pleasure Slave and, head down, arms extended, offered him the crater. He took it and sniffed it and then took a wary sip.
Then he threw back his head and drained the crater.
"Hah!" said he when finished.
"Are you not going to your wagon tonight?" he asked.
"I think not," I said.
"As you wish," said he, "but I have had it well stocked with Paga and Ka-la-na wines from Ar and such."
In Turia, even though we had much of the riches of the city at our disposal, there had not been much Paga or Ka-la-na wine. As I may have mentioned the Turians, on the whole, favor thick, sweet wines. I had taken, as a share of battle loot, a hundred and ten bottles of Paga and forty bottles of Ka-la-na wine from Tyros, Cos and Ar, but these I had distributed to my crossbowmen, with the exception of one bottle of Paga which Harold and I had split some two nights ago. I decided I might spend the night in my wagon.
Two nights ago it had been a night for Paga. Tonight, I felt, was a night for Ka-la-na. I was pleased to learn there would be some in the wagon.
I went to the chest by the side of the wagon and pulled out a small bottle, one of several, of Ka-la-na wine which reposed there.
"Let us celebrate your freedom," I said, pouring her a small bowl of wine.
She took the bowl of wine and smiled, waiting for me to fill one for myself.
When I had done so, I faced her and said, "To a free woman, one who has been strong, one who has been brave, to Elizabeth Cardwell, to a woman who is both beautiful and free."
We touched the bowls and drank. "Thank you, Tarl Cabot," she said. I drained my bowl.
"We shall, of course," Elizabeth was saying, "have to make some different arrangements about the wagon." She was glancing about, her lips pursed. "We shall have to divide it somehow. I do not know if it would be proper to share a wagon with a man who is not my master."
I was puzzled. "I am sure," I muttered, "we can figure out something." I refilled my wine bowl Elizabeth did not wish more. I noted she had scarcely sipped what she had been given. I tossed down a swallow of Ka-la-na, thinking perhaps that it was a night for Paga after all.
"A wall of some sort," she was saying.
"Drink your wine," I said, pushing the bowl in her hands toward her.
She took a sip, absently. "It is not really bad wine," she said.
"It is superb!" I said.
"I don't suppose an exalted free woman like yourself," said Elizabeth, "drinks Ka-la-na?"
"Of course I do," said Relia.
"Well," said Elizabeth, turning to me, who had been standing there, as flabbergasted as any on the bridge, "we shall have some." She looked at me. "You there," she said, "a coin for Ka-la-na."
Dumbfounded I reached in my pouch and handed her a coin, a silver Tarsk.
Elizabeth then took Relia by one arm and Rena by the other. "We are off," she announced, "to buy a bottle of wine."
One of them carried a large pitcher of the diluted Ka-la-na wine and stepped behind us, climbing the two steps to the broad wooden dais on which our tables were set. She bent over my left shoulder woodenly, her body stiff. "Wine, Master?" she asked.
"She-sleen," hissed Ho-Tu. "How is it that you first serve wine to a strange man at the table of your master.
"Forgive Lana," said she, tears springing to her eyes.
"You belong in the iron pens," said Ho-Tu.
"He frightens me," she wept. "He is of the black caste."
"Serve him wine," said he, "or you will be stripped and thrown into a pen of male slaves."
The girl turned and withdrew, then approached again, climbing the stairs, delicately, as though timidly, head down. Then she leaned forward, bending her knees slightly, her body graceful, and spoke, her voice a whisper in my ear, an invitation, "Wine, Master?" as though offering not wine, but herself. In a large house, with various slave girls, it is thought only an act of courtesy on the part of a host to permit a guest the use of one of the girls for the evening. Each of the girls considered eligible for this service, at one time or another during the evening, will approach the guest and offer him wine. His choice is indicated by the one from whom he accepts wine.
I looked at the girl. Her eyes met mine, softly. Her lips were slightly parted. "Wine, Master?" she asked.
"Yes," I said, "I will have wine."
She poured the diluted wine into my cup, bowed her head and with a shy smile, backed gracefully down the stairs behind me, then turned and hurried away. "Of course," said Ho-Tu, "you may not have her tonight, for she is White Silk."
"I understand," I said.
"Let paga and Ka-la-na be served," said Cernus, to a cheer, and turned and left the table, disappearing through a side door, the same through which the shackled slave had been led. Caprus, soon after, carrying the game pieces and board, left also, but he made his exit through a door other than that which had been used by the slave and his guards, and Cernus.
Now the girls in white tunics began to serve the strong beverages of Gor, and the festivities of the evening began.
"Ka-la-na!" I called.
A cup was brought. And I took her by the hair and held back her head, pouting the wine down her throat, some of it running down her face and body, under the slave collar and its bells.
She looked up at me, her mouth stained with wine.
I turned and, among the furnishings of the tent, found a bottle of Ka-la-na, of good vintage, from the vineyards of Ar, the loot of a caravan raid. I then took the wine, with a small copper bowl, and a black, red-trimmed wine crater, to the side of the fire. I poured some of the wine into the small copper bowl, and set it on the tripod over the tiny fire in the fire bowl.
He sat cross-legged, facing me, and I knelt by the fire, facing him.
After a time I took the copper bowl from the fire and held it against my cheek. I returned it again to the tripod, and again we waited.
I began to tremble.
"Do not be afraid, Slave," he said to me.
"Master!" I pleaded.
"I did not give you permission to speak," he said.
I was silent.
Again I took the bowl from the fire. It was now not comfortable to hold the bowl, but it was not painful to do so. I poured the wine from the small copper bowl into the black, red-trimmed wine crater, placing the small bowl in a rack to one side of the fire. I swirled, slowly, the wine in the wine crater. I saw my reflection in the redness, the blondness of my hair, dark in the wine, and the collar, with its bells, about my throat.
I now, in the fashion of the slave girl of Treve, held the wine crater against my right cheek. I could feel the warmth of the wine through the side of the crater.
"Is it ready?" he asked.
A master of Treve does not care to be told that his girl thinks it is. He wishes to be told Yes, or No.
"Yes," I whispered.
When he had almost finished, he beckoned me to him, and I went to kneel at his side. He put his hand in my hair and held my head back.
"Open your mouth," he said.
I did so, and he, spilling some from the broad rim of the crater, I feeling it on my chin, and throat, as it trickled under the collar, and body, poured the remainder of the wine down my throat. It was bitter from the dregs in the bottom of the cup, and, to my taste, scalding. I, my eyes closed, my head held painfully back, throat burning, swallowed it. When I had finished the wine he thrust the wine crater into my hands. "Run, El-in-or," he said, "put it back, and return to me." I ran to the side of the tent and put back the wine crater, and fled back to his side.
"Stand," he said.
I did so, unsteadily.
My head swirled. Suddenly, in my body, like a drum, I felt the hot wine. He had made me run that I might feel it even the sooner.
One of the men, glancing about the hut, said, "Ka-la-na!"
He pointed to a side of the hut.
There, tied together by the necks, were some six bottles of Ka-la-na.
He went to them and looked at them, lifting them. They were in dark bottles. He turned them about. "From the vineyards of Ar," he whistled. It was choice Ka-la-na.
"We shall open only this bottle," I said. "The others we may enjoy later."
They would not become drunk. One bottle of Ka-la-na among ten men is nothing. Ka-la-na is not paga or the strong beer of the north.
I did not, on the other hand, want the entire stock of Ka-la-na emptied.
Our project must not be jeopardized.
The two men, men of mine, who were going forth to relieve the guard, had their swallows from the bottle. They then left. Arn then took the bottle and drank from it, his head back, swiftly.
"Enough," I said.
The men, his and mine, passed the bottle about. In a short time the two men who had been relieved of guard duty in the forest re-entered the hut. They, too, had their Ka-la-na. There was little left.
"Captain," said one of my men, handing me the bottle.
I put back my head and finished it. It was bitter, the dregs, but it had in it the warmth and flash of the fine Ka-la-na of Ar. It was a red Ka-la-na. It was a choice Ka-la-na. The vineyards of Ar, as those of Cos, were among the finest on all Gor.
"Perhaps a tiny glass of ka-la-na," she said, "among friends."
I looked to the left. Louise, as she had been bidden, was watching. I lifted my finger. The Earth girl then leapt up and hurried to the table. At the table she knelt.
"A small bottle," I said, "of the Slave Gardens of Anesidemus."
"I have heard that is a marvelous ka-la-na," said the free woman, her eyes alight.
"So, too, have I," I said.
"It is very expensive," said the woman.
"Ka-la-na?" she asked.
"Yes," he said. "A wine."
There are many ka-la-nas, but the one in the colored glass, if it had been in a clear glass, would have been golden in color. The reddish color of the glass infused its contents with something of its own hue.
"From the wine trees of Gor," he said.
"It is lovely, Master," she said, breathing in the wine's bouquet.
"It is a nice ka-la-na," he said.
He then held it before her, the rim of the glass to her lips, and tipped it, slightly, that she might sip it.
"It is wonderful, Master," she breathed. "The smoothness, the flavor, the fragrance, the body."
"I thought you would like it," he said.
"This will warm you," he said. He then, slowly, a bit at a time, gave me to drink. Gratefully I imbibed the fluid, a wine, a ruby wine, how it purred in one's mouth and throat, like a soft, stirring, liquid flame. Only once before, in the storage facility on Earth, shortly before my shipment to Gor, had I tasted such a beverage. Again, it far exceeded, in bouquet and flavor any wine with which I had been familiar on Earth.
" Ka-la- na," I whispered.
He drew away the goblet. "Cheap, of course," he said.
"Dally, handsome Tenrik, noble citizen of Siba," said the Lady Alexina, gracefully placing her dropped veil over her left shoulder, "an exquisite ka-la-na, from the terraces of Cos, waits to be served."
Kurik inclined his head, politely.
"From the terraces of Naxos, on Cos," she said.
"Ah!" said Kurik, lifting his head.
I gathered this beverage might be of some special interest.
They looked into one another's eyes. Free persons may do this with impunity.
She dared to place her small hand on his.
I hated her. I hated her!
How could I compete with her, half-naked, in a tunic, collared, on my knees?
"A single bottle," said Decius Albus, "may cost as much as a golden tarsk."
Paula then, in the same order in which she had placed the glasses, filled each, something like a third full.
How precious then, I thought, must be the beverage!
"I shall not propose a toast," said Decius Albus, "as I am unsure we share a common sentiment, but let us drink, as might friends."
My master swirled the tiny ruby lake enclosed within its crystal shores, observed it, and then took its scent, as though it might have been a tiny bouquet of dinas. He then barely touched it to his lips.
"How is it?" inquired Decius Albus.
"I have heard of the ka-la-na of Naxos," said Kurik. "This is the first time I have tasted it."
"I trust you find it satisfactory" said Decius Albus.
"It is exquisite," said Kurik.
"I once, in Venna," said Decius Albus, "exchanged five girls for a bottle."
"A bargain," said Kurik.
I rather doubted that. Still, who is to say what slave girls are worth? Men, of course.
"Drink again," said Decius Albus. "One would not ruin a ka-la-na of this rarity by mixing it with poison. Too, we need you to convey our offer to Lord Grendel."
"My thinking, exactly," said Kurik.
"Join with us," said Decius Albus, "and you may swill the ka-la-na of Naxos with the same abandon as vat paga."
"That," said Kurik, "would be desecration, like uprooting flowers."
"True," smiled Decius Albus, "but it would be a desecration well within your means."