Let's talk about Kombucha!
Aktualisiert: 23. Mai
We'll start with a few questions.
The first one: do you make your own Kombucha or are you buying a commercially produced Kombucha?
If you make your own, then you know almost all that you need to know about it.
But can you really say the same about the one you buy?
Do you REALLY know what you are actually buying?
When you buy a product in a store, the name on the bottle (Kombucha) will be the same, the packaging will be pretty, the description will wow you with exotic flavors and with probiotic content. It might even taste great.
But the question remains: do you really know everything that you should know about this Kombucha?
Let that sink in for a moment.
Next, we'll present you with a couple of pictures.
Let's see if you can get the one common factor linking all those pictures (besides the fact that they all relate to Kombucha).
Above are some of the teas that we use for our Kombucha.
Below is the unrefined Organic (BIO) brown sugar that we use for all of our products, including Kombucha.
Here is, where the fermentation magic happens.
Above, is our Jun Chiyabari Kombucha during bottling.
Also above is Kombucha inside our retail fridge!
And one of our Kombucha flights!
So did you guess what all of those picture have in common?
We do everything in glass. From storage, through fermentation, to bottling and enjoying.
This is our motto and our philosophy.
The next question would be why we decided on using only glass?
Kombucha is a fermented drink.
Fermentation in different forms has been for quite a long time. The first fermentation vessels were made of either stoneware or wood.
Later came glass. Stoneware and wood impart natural energy to anything that is fermented in them. Wood also adds some extra layer of flavor.
Both of them are wonderful for fermentation.
Glass on the other hand, is neutral, which is also good, and glass is easy for sanitation. But glass limits the amount that you can brew in it, as glass jars come only in certain sizes. And they are comparatively small for larger productions.
We use 10 liter glass jars and we love them.
Right at this point of time, when we make small series of many "flavors", those jars work great for us. In the future, we might consider switching to larger, wood barrels.
And speaking of wood barrels - we are very happy to see more and more brewers using those natural (and quite often re-purposed) wood barrels.
But this is not always the case with a majority of other brewers.
Majority of commercial Kombucha brewers use stainless steel tanks. It makes it easy for them to brew a few thousand liters of Kombucha at the same time.
Stainless steel is not our thing. In our opinion, it gives cold energy to Kombucha.
Also, metal in any form was never used for fermentation before, and those stainless steel tanks are primarily made for beer.
Kombucha is different. During Kombucha fermentation, organic acids are formed.
Here's a quote from "A Review on Kombucha Tea..." describing some of them.
"Chemical analysis of kombucha showed the presence of various organic acids, such as acetic, gluconic, glucuronic, citric, L-lactic, malic, tartaric, malonic, oxalic, succinic, pyruvic, usnic; ...14 amino acids,...Jun 21, 2014"
We might be wrong, but we suspect that those acids do react with those stainless steel tanks and that there can be a danger of heavy metal particles leaching into Kombucha that is brewed in those tanks .
Kombucha exploded in popularity just recently and there have not been enough independent studies done confirming that there is no leeching caused by organic acids in those tanks.
Also when you take into consideration that both vinegar and fermented vegetables are not traditionally fermented in stainless steel, then there must be a reason for that.
Although nowadays, some producers use special stainless steel tanks called acetators to "create" vinegar within hours.
But this only hours, and not days. And it is a modern method, and it is not how vinegar was traditionally produced.
We've been tasting a lot of Kombucha around the world, and we've been finding that quite a number of Kombucha, brewed in those tanks, to have a metallic after taste.
But that's us, most brewers see it differently, and so will you as a customer.
And we respect that.
And now let's talk about, what is in our opinion the worst brewing container for Kombucha - one made out of PLASTIC!
Why we think so?
It has been proven in over 800 world-wide studies, that there are no safe plastics, and that all of them, even the so called food grade ones, leach some chemicals into the food or water which is stored in them.
And that is regardless whether they are BPA-free or not.
BPA-free plastics contain hundreds of other chemicals that are not safe.
Plastics are also known as hormone disruptors. And this is the case when they are in contact with regular foods. Now imagine what things can organic acids from Kombucha pull out of them!
So, when you purchase Kombucha brewed in plastic, you might be getting all those extra synthetic goodies right along, inside that Kombucha.
Same goes for Kombucha stored in plastic bottles.
Plastic bottles leach into plain water stored in them. But not only that.
BBC news has recently done an article about water in plastic bottles, and this is what they found out:
"Tests on major brands of bottled water have found that nearly all of them contained tiny particles of plastic."
So do you REALLY know what you are getting with your Kombucha?
If it matters to you, then maybe it'll be good idea to ask some questions, or to do some research, before you buy a fancy looking bottle.
Back to our Kombucha.
After reading this post and seeing all the pictures, you will have a better idea what you are getting from us. We have nothing to hide here!
So thank you for reading and cheers!
The cover picture is that of our "Kombucha of the World" bottle collection that we used to have in our Kombucha Café.