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My Trials with Brewing Kombucha

I’ve been following real food bloggers for some time now and within the last year learned about Kombucha. It’s a delicious fermented tea beverage that is said to be a great probiotic to add to your diet.

At first, I wasn’t sure I’d like this drink because I’ve tried fermented drinks before and didn’t like the taste. I read that health food stores usually carry commercially made Kombucha so I went and bought a bottle from my local store. When I found that I actually enjoyed the drink, I wanted to start to learn to brew my own. Each 16 oz bottle of Kombucha at the store cost over $3 so it would definitely be smarter to brew my own.

Cultures for Health had a special where their Kombucha starter culture was free and all I had to do was pay for shipping. So I took advantage of that freebie and was all excited to start making my own drinks! I had to wait 30 days for it to rehydrate. It was a long 30 days so when it came time to brew my very first batch, I was excited. It brewed for a few days and I looked at it to check on it and I saw a small white fuzzy patch on top of the liquid! I was so upset to see mold on it! I immediately got online and went to the Cultures for Health website and chatted with a rep via Live Chat. I found out I had to toss the entire thing out including my SCOBY (starter culture). I was so upset as I would have to start ALL over again! Cultures for Health was so awesome in that they sent me a brand new starter culture at no charge and even included pH strips so I can make sure the pH level is correct when I start again.

I waited another 30 days and it was ready to brew the first batch. I let it brew for 7 days and then tasted it. It was ready! Success! I transferred into a bottle that had a little grape juice in it for flavored Kombucha and let it sit for another 2 days. I tasted it after that and it was pretty good! That quart of Kombucha was gone in no time. I had already started another quart but it still had 4 days to go. When time came to check on it after the 4 days, I lifted the covering off the jar and what did I see? Not again!! Mold! Arggh! I didn’t understand how this could happen again! I made sure to hand wash each jar in hot soapy water and even swished the jar with some vinegar to make sure the jar was completely clean! So, again, I had to toss everything out!

I went to Amazon and ordered a live organic SCOBY instead of a dehydrated one this time. I didn’t want to have to wait another 30 days for it to rehydrate before being able to brew Kombucha.

And then I went to research if there were some preventative measures so I don’t get mold yet again! From what I read, the kitchen is the worst place to leave the Kombucha to brew so now I need to figure out where in my house I should leave it. So my journey to brewing my own Kombucha continues and I hope I can keep my new SCOBY mold free!

Any readers out there a seasoned Kombucha brewer? Where do you keep yours as it brews? Have you had issues with mold?

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3 comments to My Trials with Brewing Kombucha

  • I have been wanting to do this for a year now. I even have what some call a “Mother” in my fridge waiting for some action. You have inspired me to give it a go. It’s nice to know about the mold issue. I may and try to store mine in my linen closet on the top self. Thanks so much for sharing your experience!!

    • Wow, you’ve had it for a year? Definitely time to put it to work! 🙂 And I read that it will still need air flow so the closet still may not be the best place. I’m going to have to do more searching and find where others put it.

  • I know. It’s really sad! I have a huge bottle sitting on my counter this whole time too! I have been saving my kombucha bottles from the store so I can use them for travel purposes. I wonder if the bottom of my pantry will work? The doors are vented.

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