The ultimate brewing and fermentation guide

Why kombucha?

If you thought kombucha was just a drink, then think again. Kombucha is a way of life, and if you are willing to let your guard down and acquiesce, you might find that the philosophy and spirit of kombucha leads you to positive possibilities way beyond your expectations. Above all it is a way to connect with nature and embrace the principles of balance and harmony.

Kombucha is a product of fermentation, which is a natural and transformative process. By consuming kombucha, we participate in the cycles of life, appreciating the interconnectedness of all living things. It reminds us of the importance of finding balance in our own lives, as the symbiotic relationship between yeast and bacteria in kombucha mirrors the need for balance within ourselves and the world around us.

Kombucha is created through the transformative power of microorganisms. It serves as a reminder of the potential for growth and change in our own lives. Just as kombucha evolves from a simple mixture of ingredients into a complex and vibrant beverage, we too can embrace personal growth and evolve into our best selves, while appreciating that we ourselves are part of a larger system of forces interacting in harmony in a vast, incredible universe

The process of brewing and consuming kombucha can also foster a sense of mindfulness and intentionality, encouraging us to be present in the moment, appreciating the flavors, aromas, and textures of the beverage. By savoring each sip, we cultivate a deeper awareness and connection to the experience of nourishing our bodies and souls.

Kombucha is often associated with health benefits and the promotion of well-being. Caring for our bodies and nurturing our health aligns with the idea of respecting and honoring our physical vessels. By choosing kombucha, we symbolically affirm our commitment to self-care and the pursuit of vitality.

Kombucha has a long history of being shared and enjoyed within communities and it can serve as a symbol of unity and connection, reminding us of the value of coming together and sharing nourishment. By sharing kombucha with others, we foster a sense of camaraderie and celebrate our shared experiences as human beings.

Ultimately, the significance of drinking kombucha lies in the symbolism it represents. It invites us to embrace the principles of balance, growth, mindfulness, and connection with nature and our fellow beings. By appreciating the deeper meanings associated with kombucha, we can find joy and enrichment in the act of consuming this ancient elixir.

What tools do I need to get started making my own kombucha?

The good new is that getting started is cheap and easy! Most people have the basic kitchen utensils needed to make a fermentation right now in their kitchen. Check out our comprehensive list of everything you will need to get off the ground here.

You’ll need a kombucha scoby of course, unless you have a kind neighbour who is willing to share, but the beauty is that they will keep on growing with each batch you make until you are giving them away to your neighbours. Check out out comprehensive guide to the best deals on kombucha scobies here.

Making kombucha

Making kombucha might be a lot to take in at first, but by following the simple instructions on this site, you can start producing delicious kombucha tea in no time. Before long you will find yourself experimenting with your own flavours and discovering maverick signature tweaks that will wow your consumers.

Making kombucha is a trial and error process but the fun is in getting down and dirty, in making mistakes, in learning getting back in touch with real food.

Where can i find a list of the simple steps involved in making kombucha?

We have created a simple step-by-step get started guide for you on this page, that you can also print off. You may want to bookmark this page to return later on.

Where do I get a kombucha scoby?

We put together a detailed list of scobies, what to look for, which ones are best for beginners, the best prices and more, to help you make a decision and get your scoby in the mail as quick as possible.

Once you get your own scoby, whether it was purchased online or shared by a friend, be sure to pass on your scoby to others and to share your newfound wisdom as you learn how to troubleshoot and create new recipes.

What kind of water should I use?

Tap water is often just fine for making kombucha, but beware: water is not just water but rather varies greatly depending on region, processing, pH balance, minerals, and much more. These factors can have varying degrees of impact on the success, flavour, and quality of your kombucha and on the health of your scoby.

For these reasons we actually recommend filtering your tap water to remove heavy metals, chemicals and minerals. For a detailed guide on the best (and the worst) water to use for brewing your kombucha, see our water guide here

What kind of sugar should I use?

If you are looking to get off the ground quickly, a save bet for a consistent brew with a steady flavor is cane sugar. However, sugar is a crucial ingredient in your fermentation and influences many aspects such as speed of fermentation, health of your scoby, and the flavor of your tea. I HIGHLY recommend reading our detailed guide to the various sugar choices available when brewing kombucha, and to conduct your own experiments to see what works best for you. Maple syrup and fruit juices are just two of the options i love to use in my fermentation to create uniquely distinctive flavor profiles.

What temperature does my scoby prefer?

For your primary fermentation keeping the brewing vessel within the optimal temperature range (68°F to 78°F or 20°C to 26°C) helps ensure robust fermentation and a healthy SCOBY. Temperatures above or below this range can slow down fermentation or allow undesirable microorganisms to thrive. For the second fermentation the ideal temperature is a little higher around 72°F to 80°F (22°C to 27°C) to encourage better carbonation.

In general, avoid extreme temperatures outside of the optimal range because they can damage your scoby, slow fermentation and lead to mold growth. The more consistent you can keep the temperature, the better.

What equipment do I need?

To brew kombucha, you will need a few essential pieces of equipment. Firstly, a brewing vessel, preferably a glass jar or fermentation vessel, to house the kombucha during fermentation. You will also need a breathable cover, such as a cloth or breathable lid, to allow airflow while keeping out insects and dust. A brewing thermometer helps monitor the temperature, while pH strips or a pH tester allow you to measure and maintain the acidity level. Additionally, a brewing spoon or utensil, bottles or jars with airtight lids for storing the finished kombucha, a funnel for transferring the liquid, and a strainer for removing any sediment are necessary. While not mandatory, a spigot on the brewing vessel can be convenient for draining and bottling the finished kombucha.

Read our comprehensive list of the must-have equipment items you will need to get started, along with our top recommendations and some other cool pieces of brewing paraphernalia you could probably do without, but do you really want to?

What are some common beginner errors when making kombucha?

It takes a while to figure out the ropes when you start out making kombucha, but learning is half the fun. The most common error i made at the beginning, and still make sometimes for sure, is over/under fermentation. It takes a while to know when is a good time to pour that first glass, but the longer you make kombucha the better you will get at judging what is the right time.

Other common beginner errors include unwittingly introducing contaminants to the brew, which will result in bad odors and tastes, and possibly mold. Be careful not over or under-fill the brewing vessel. Underfilling could slow your brew considerably, and overfilling without leaving enough room for expansion will result in overflow as your kombucha ferments. For a longer list of beginner errors check out my post ‘7 rookie errors when making kombucha (and how to avoid them)‘.

Always refer to these basic beginner instructions for brewing kombucha when you are starting out.

What’s an easy recipe for beginners?

Check out our favourite beginner recipe for kombucha which is a great base to master before taking off on your own experimental journey. For other more creative twists on kombucha tea and other yummy kombucha-inspired treats, check out our complete recipe page.

7 common rookie errors to avoid when brewing kombucha

When making kombucha for the first time, beginners may encounter some common errors. Here are a few to be aware of and tips to avoid them: Honestly, I have done all of these things more…

Read more