I bottled my second batch of kombucha yesterday -- which I think turned out way better than the first, by the way -- and brewed the third!
The one class session Ali & I attended at Fermentation Fest last month was Kombucha 101 presented by Vanessa & Alla of NessAlla Kombucha! We both came home with a kit that included everything we needed for our first batch of kombucha:
- A one-gallon glass jar w/cotton cover & rubber band
- Organic sugar
- Organic black tea (loose leaf)
- SCOBY and starter tea
- Laminated instruction card
Sugar dissolved; tea stirred in. Let it steep and cool; strain into jar.
Add starter tea and SCOBY.
Bottles procured; bottled and ready for 2nd ferment (bubbles!).
I am terrible at record keeping, and my timeline is a little fuzzy! I really need to start a Kombucha Log...
I know that the Batch #1 sat a little longer because birthday and lack of bottles.
Batch #2 was brewed with organic black tea (in bags) and its first ferment was a bit shorter, so the booch is sweeter (so much better than Batch #1, which is borderline vinegar!). I'm looking forward to tasting Batch #2 after the second fermentation (maybe by Thanksgiving).
Yesterday's Batch #3 was made with some PG Tips (tea bags) that I found in the cupboard.
I'm getting a bit more comfortable with the process. The "log" will help keep me on track. I'm not even thinking about flavors yet... it was suggested in class that we make five or six plain batches to get comfortable, and that's advice I've taken to heart.
SCOBY is weird, but also very cool.
Your kombucha looks like something I might even work up the nerve to try someday! I've been a little leery of fermented foods ever since a Japanese friend served me some natto (fermented soybeans). The rancid odor and strings of goo were off-putting and the taste was even worse. Enjoy your kombucha (and the process!)
Posted by: Bonny | 23 November 2015 at 02:58 PM
I've never tasted a kimbucha I've liked. I'll stick to wine. :)
Posted by: margene | 23 November 2015 at 03:21 PM
I'm with Margene. I don't know why I don't like it, I tend to love fermented flavors. Maybe I just haven't met the right batch.
Posted by: Gale Zucker (she shoots sheep shots) | 23 November 2015 at 03:30 PM
I know this is a thing right now - hope you enjoy drinking it as much as you enjoy making it!
Posted by: Carole | 23 November 2015 at 05:20 PM
Keep a log. It's the right thing to do. And my father the home wine maker says it improves your skills immeasurably. 'Cuz who wants to drink the same mistake twice?!
Posted by: Robby | 23 November 2015 at 07:49 PM
I place a piece of masking tape on my 2 half gallon jars with the date of feeding and the batch number too. I make the 2nd ferment about 2 weeks later- and label them too. Taste is better. I add my flavoring to my bottles or canning pint jars during the second ferment- love adding chopped fresh ginger and some pineapple fatalii hot sauce. I then let that sit in a dark cupboard for 10-14 days and then stick it in the fridge for another week or more. I find the longer ferment times make it fizzier and tastier. So glad you are having fun with your kombucha!
Posted by: Manise | 23 November 2015 at 10:37 PM
I have never tried this stuff . . . but I'm fascinated. I think I might be able to recruit my live-in chemist to help me make some. But. Trust me. We'll have a log!
Posted by: Kym | 24 November 2015 at 04:47 PM