Monday, May 21, 2012

Kombucha




Kombucha is good stuff! A a fermented tea made using a mother culture, similar to the starter for apple cider vinegar or desem bread, Kombucha is developing a cult-like following. This mildly alcoholic drink is filled with good bacteria to help with digestion and strengthen your intestinal tract. If you take probiotic supplements, all that's in there is in kombucha, too. In ancient China it was believed that this ale had, "magical powers enabling people to live forever." (Wiki). Longevity notwithstanding, this frothy concoction is really tasty and beats any sugary soda or intoxicating beer around.  

If you're on the East Coast and you're looking for some, there's the Kombuchik Bar, where you can get a freshly brewed, homemade draft of this herb-infused elixir right on tap.


On tap the day I visited, was the Hibiscus Haze and the Wintery Mix No. 2. When you first take a sip, the taste is raw and wild, like a waterfall spray on your lips or maybe even opening your mouth to pouring drops of rain. In other words, it's a bit of a shock and you don't know where to place the taste in your drink memory repertoire. The reason being is that this stuff is unique, nothing else quite like it. It's not beer and it's not apple cider, but it's a merger of sorts - with a hint tea and vinegar, if you can imagine such a combination. Try it. It's not just a drink. It's medicinal and it's good for you. "Proponents claim it aids cancer recovery, increases energy, sharpens eyesight, aids joint recovery, improves skin elasticity, aids digestion, and improves experience with foods that 'stick' going down, such as rice or pasta." (Wiki).


When there's no kombucha bar in sight, GT's Raw Kombucha is a great alternative. This California company has come up with various flavors to suit every taste and they are all very good. My favorite is their new line called Synergy Enlightened, especially the Trilogy. Raspberry, lemon and ginger are its secret ingredients. It tastes a bit like a fruity, spicy tea with Perrier fizzy water mixed in.


Strawberry Serenity is another favorite. It has bits of strawberry inside and is such a thirst quencher. Have some after a nice hike or run. If you look at the bottom of the bottle, you will notice some cloudy substance floating around. This is from the kombucha culture and is natural to the mix. It's what makes the whole thing alive and full of enzymes and probiotics. After a few forays into kombucha, the floating culture will be something you come to look forward to, to know and to love.


Synergy's Grape Chia boasts chia seeds as an extra nutritional boost. The seeds expand into a glutinous mass and make the grape juice somewhat reminiscent of jello, just not overly sweet. Chia seeds are rich in Omega 3 EFA's plus protein and fiber. You can't beat that in a drink!



One of the original GT's formulas is the Gingerade Kombucha. For the die-hard kombucha fans, this potion has more of a traditional taste. Not fruity at all, with very little sweet notes, it has the tang and vinegary bite of a true fermented drink. If you suffer from any mild digestions upsets, the Gingerade will certainly soothe you.


I couldn't wait and drank most of this delicious Mystic Mango before I remembered to snap a shot. So luscious this one is, with real mangoes blended up inside. It's a newer addition to the flavor line-up and if you like tropical and fruity, you'll love it.


The Cosmic Cranberry has a great zing, a tart on tart, so to speak. The cool thing about these drinks is they delight your taste buds. They bring life to your tongue when you sip and swallow. All those enzymes dancing around in your mouth.


On the bottle label, the company has begun to highlight fans' enlightening quotes. One of my favorites is from fellow kombucha lover, Daniel Olsen. And I quote, "If the space between us is the same, then we are only different in name." Enlightened words to ponder while enjoying your Synergy...


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