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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 7:50 am 
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designedtobekind wrote:
lycophyte wrote:
designedtobekind wrote:
Ok, my new batch looks fine! I'm just about ready to bottle it. I'm thinking blueberry ginger, plain ginger, and cherry. Maybe citrus ginger. I'm pouring off a gallon! I don't know how we'll be able to drink all of this.


Do you add the flavors on bottling? Using extracts? I've messed around with that a bit, but not very much.

I added the flavors when I bottled and did a secondary ferment. The blog I read (kombuchakamp.com) says to let them sit for 1-2 days, but they weren't fizzy or tart enough for me at that point. 5-6 extra days seemed about right. I used fresh/frozen fruit and crystallized ginger.

The extra boost of sugar is supposed to help produce more carbonation, and so far, it seems to be working! I've hear dry fruit can work well, too--also because of the high sugar content.

I'm drinking cherry kombucha right now. I think I'll bottle some pineapple and experiment with other flavors this weekend. I love GT's, but wow, there's nothing like the stuff you make yourself!


I once had it way shoot out when I opened a bottle when I added extra sugar on secondary ferment...it almost splashed into my computer...so always open over a sink!

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:09 pm 
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Now I'm really starting to get irritated. I went to the store to buy a bottle of kombucha today and when I went to buy it the cashier called over the shift leader and I said,"It's not alcohol" and he said,"I don't know why I have to call her over." When she came over she asked for my ID and I said,"It's not alcohol" and she said,"Yes it is" in a bisque-y tone and I said,"No, it's not alcohol" and she said,"Yes it is, can I just see you ID?" I said no and left. No where on the bottle does it say anything about alcohol (it's a GT to be more specific) and it's not even shelved anywhere near the alcohol. Not only that but NYS has strict alcohol in store laws and ONLY beer is allowed to be sold in the grocery store, everything else must be sold in a liquor store. There's no way in hell they can claim that it's alcohol and ID me every single time I buy it.

It says on the bottle: Suggested Use,"For best results, drink at least one bottle a day. Product can be consumed before, during or after meals. To ensure maximum freshness, drink within 3 days after opening." DOES THAT SOUND LIKE ALCOHOL TO YOU?!?!?!?

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:22 pm 
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What flavor was it? I've noticed on some bottles of GT's that it says it contains small amounts of alcohol due to the fermentation.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:26 pm 
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It doesn't because I checked. It's happened with two now and both times were different flavors. It wouldn't even matter though, if it had any alcohol in it then they wouldn't be allowed to sell it at the grocery store and definitely wouldn't have it on the whole other side of the store as the alcohol.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:37 pm 
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whoa, that's ridiculous. I've never heard of anyone being carded buying kombucha. It does contain a tiny amount of alcohol I think, but it clearly isn't regulated by liquor laws, as you said, or else they wouldn't be able to sell it in grocery stores.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:40 pm 
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Exactly! If it happens again I'm going to ask to speak to the manager because none of this makes any sense. I want to bring something with me to show them, though (even though it's pretty stupid that they sell something and have no idea what it is). Any recommendations for what I can bring to prove to them that it isn't alcohol?

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:42 pm 
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maybe you could call up GT's and ask them? Maybe they will call up that store and help sort it out, I'm sure they would want to know if this was happening.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 5:43 pm 
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That's a good idea, I think I'm going to try it. Thank you.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Mon Jun 27, 2011 6:08 pm 
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That's annoying, Mr. Shankly, but go easy on the cashiers. They probably received some unclear memo about kombucha and are just confused. You should definitely try to make a point of talking to a manager.


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 9:45 am 
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lycophyte wrote:
I once had it way shoot out when I opened a bottle when I added extra sugar on secondary ferment...it almost splashed into my computer...so always open over a sink!

I sprayed down a wall and my keyboard at work once, and had to get a new one. I bet the stain is still on the wall behind my desk.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 3:18 pm 
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Goddamnit, I was just skimming the Honest Tea blog (12/17/2010) and found out they discontinued their kombucha. The apple jasmine was my favorite! Granted, I hadn't bought it in a while since, like other brands, it just wasn't the same recently, but still. Bummer.

honest tea blog wrote:
According to our understanding of the federal regulations governing kombucha, it appears that any product that has the potential to increase in alcohol content during its lifetime is expected to be labeled and regulated as an alcoholic beverage. Ever since we started making Honest Kombucha we’ve been monitoring the alcohol content of the drinks – and our lab samples were consistently in compliance. But we have never aspired to sell drinks that are labeled and distributed as alcoholic drinks – it’s a heavily regulated industry, and one that is quite different from our current business.

It’s been a wild ride – we’ll miss the sparkle and tanginess of the drinks, not to mention the beautiful labels and fun flavors. There are lots of other kombucha makers I’ve gotten to know over the past year or two. Some of them will choose to stay in the kombucha business by labeling their products as alcoholic drinks, some will keep tweaking their recipes. I wish them all well, it’s likely to be some rocky terrain in the years ahead.


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:27 pm 
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Argh, I'm so sick of this kombucha...crepe, I don't even know what to call it! Controversy?

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 5:15 pm 
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according to this article
Quote:
some bottles may have an alcohol content above 0.5%, the legal threshold for a non-alcoholic beverage. Earlier this week, Whole Foods yanked GT Synergy Kombucha from its shelves, and the Federal Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau [TTB] has launched an investigation into the nascent yet booming kombucha industry. Pretty soon you may need to show ID to buy your six pack of Guava Goddess!


http://gothamist.com/2010/06/25/popular ... classi.php

what the hell, it seems like an overreaction. I guess more and more people will be homebrewing now.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2011 5:17 pm 
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I would if I could! I need a kombucha dealer!

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Sat Jul 23, 2011 6:17 pm 
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Mr. Shankly wrote:
Now I'm really starting to get irritated. I went to the store to buy a bottle of kombucha today and when I went to buy it the cashier called over the shift leader and I said,"It's not alcohol" and he said,"I don't know why I have to call her over." When she came over she asked for my ID and I said,"It's not alcohol" and she said,"Yes it is" in a bisque-y tone and I said,"No, it's not alcohol" and she said,"Yes it is, can I just see you ID?" I said no and left. No where on the bottle does it say anything about alcohol (it's a GT to be more specific) and it's not even shelved anywhere near the alcohol. Not only that but NYS has strict alcohol in store laws and ONLY beer is allowed to be sold in the grocery store, everything else must be sold in a liquor store. There's no way in hell they can claim that it's alcohol and ID me every single time I buy it.

It says on the bottle: Suggested Use,"For best results, drink at least one bottle a day. Product can be consumed before, during or after meals. To ensure maximum freshness, drink within 3 days after opening." DOES THAT SOUND LIKE ALCOHOL TO YOU?!?!?!?

Aren't you over 21? Why can't you just show them your ID?

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 8:49 am 
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Reviving this old thread after reading through it.

I wasn't even thinking of brewing my own but someone on a facebook group I belong to, who lives near me, offered scobies (as well as kefir grains) so I thought what the heck? I love kombucha but don't drink it often because of the price.

In case you are interested and don't want to read through 5 pages of this thread, vijita gave a link to her VegNews Kombucha DIY article: http://vegnews.com/articles/page.do?pageId=2504&catId=2

I am excited to make kombucha - I've made just about everything else from scratch.

I am curious about the alcohol content. Does anyone know how high it can go?


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Wed May 30, 2012 8:51 am 
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vijita also suggested reading Wild Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 12:17 am 
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In regards to GT being a 21 and older thing, you have to be of age to buy it at Whole Foods, but the market by my place doesn't have the restriction so I've been buying it from them like mad. I get all flippant about the issue because I'm already deemed too young to buy beer, (by a year!) and now they're trying to take my kombucha from me! I definitely spend way too much money on this addiction. Almost every time I go to the store I buy it so I really am interested in brewing my own.
Ever so often I'll drink two bottles in a day and while I feel awesome at the time it usually makes me feel kind of ill. Today I only had one bottle and I've been suffering from a mild kombucha tummy ache.

There's this new(ish) brand called 'Bucha and it's very yummy though it tastes more like fruit juice to me. I highly recommend the masala chai and the verbana rose. Yumm..


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 12:52 am 
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GTs has two versions of their kombucha these days. An "over 21" version, which requires an ID for purchase and is really just their original formula, and a non ID kombucha that is apparently fermented less, which results in less alcohol. I think they are both great.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 11:54 am 
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I get GT's at Whole Foods without being carded, so they must be carrying the kind that is fermented less. Sometimes they are super fizzy and sometimes they are flat. Depends on the flavor. But someone I met in line told me that he just puts them in a dark closet in his house and lets them sit for a few weeks until they are fizzy enough for him. I'm am way scared to do that, but he is clearly not dead so it must be somewhat safe.

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Thu May 31, 2012 9:52 pm 
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I don't think that could be too bad...

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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:28 am 
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i am very excited that i was just given a mother by one of my husband's coworkers. I used to brew booch when i lived in iowa, but my scoby didn't make the trip west. I am a little worried that the guy winged his tea and sugar proportions, and i might go buy a bottle to add instead of his tea for liquid.

when i brewed it, i would leave it in capped jars on the counter for a couple of hours and it would get fizzier, has anyone tried this with store bought?


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Sat Jun 02, 2012 10:22 pm 
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I leave mine bottled for two days before refrigerating. I don't normally drink store-bought kind so haven't tried leaving it out.


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2012 6:22 am 
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So I made two batches, one with a blend of black teas and one with plain oolong. Everything went fine and after a week I removed the scobies, strained it into four smaller jars and added blueberries to some, a satsuma to some and left the oolong plain, capped it and left it out for two more days.

The verdict is it is tasty but not fizzy enough so next time I will extend the second two day sit to 5-6 like DTBK suggested.

I also need some ginger.


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 Post subject: Re: Addicted to Kombucha
PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2012 10:54 am 
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my booch turned out great, although i used all black tea bc i didn't have any green when i got the scoby. This scoby makes booch that is way less fizzy though, i let it sit bottled overnight and it wan't fizzy, will see if a few days makes it more so.


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