High alcohol kombucha exists, offering a rare chance to be both buzzed and digestively healthy.
I know what you’re thinking. Doesn’t all kombucha have alcohol, and how can high alcohol kombucha change my world even more than the regular stuff has? Well, by the nature of the fermentation process, all kombucha has some alcohol — but usually the degree of alcohol you’ll find in a supermarket kombucha is so low you’ll hardly even notice it’s there (and it’s low enough to be sold to minors of any age, shape, or size in the US). The existence of the boozier stuff is more exciting than a vegan McDonald’s and the invention of unicorn ice cream, combined.
What is high alcohol kombucha, anyway?
Glad you asked. It’s kombucha the way you know and love it, but with a higher alcohol content — usually closer to that of a standard beer or ale. It’s got the sweetness of other drinks you’re already in love with, like summer tea, standard kombucha, or even orange wine, but with the added zing of additional booze.
“We use a longer fermentation process,” explains Jason Jepson of Wild Tonic, one of the more popular high alcohol kombucha brands out there. “The hard part is keeping a great taste without a harsh alcohol finish. This is why we use honey and brew and ferment it like a lager beer, which takes 25 days. You get the same probiotics found in non-alcohol and low-alcohol kombucha.”
What does a high alcohol kombucha taste like?
If you’re already into the flavor of commercially-produced kombucha brews that are available at mass retailers and health food stores, you’ll probably love its higher alcohol cousin, too. The flavor profile is sort of what you’d expect it to be — sweet, tangy, smooth, bumpy, and ultimately, like a refreshing beer thanks to the gentle alcohol notes. Depending on the flavor you pick, high alcohol kombucha’s beer-like profile can pair especially well with fish, grilled meats, chips, and just about anything you’d put BBQ sauce on, and the health benefits of kombucha are enough to at least interest the masses.
It’s not really marketed as a healthier version of beer, per se, but if you ask us, for the same alcohol content and arguably better buzzy flavor, it may be a better option thanks to gut-friendly probiotics, especially since some research points to alcohol disrupting a normally healthy digestive tract. We’re considering a boozy kombucha a minor safeguard against that.
Where do you get high alcohol kombucha?
“You can find our non-alcoholic beverages in 41 states. You can find our alcohol available in seven states and there are 10 more to open up prior to 2018, including New York. We offer both bottles and kegs. A draft should cost you between seven and eight dollars,” or about the same amount as a draft brew at a typical New York City beer hall.
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