The origins of kombucha have become lost in the mists of time. It is thought to have originated in Asia in 212 BC, and was often referred to as the “tea of immortality.” However, no one knows for certain the true origins of kombucha. What is known is that this raw and nutritious beverage is being drank throughout the world and can now be enjoyed at San Diego Brewing Company.
Kombucha is a living health drink, with very low alcohol and numerous nutritional benefits. Kombucha tea (KT) contains organic acids, active enzymes and probiotics, amino acids, polyphenol antioxidants, and B vitamins, which lead to improved gut health and digestion, detoxification, improved energy, and immune support. Kombucha is low in carbohydrates, with very little residual sugar left over after fermentation, and low in caffeine, with about half the amount compared to regular tea and coffee.
Our kombucha tea is brewed with purified reverse osmosis water, organic black tea, and organic cane sugar. The KT is fermented in a 1-barrel continuous brew system by the kombucha culture, a SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast). The combination of microorganisms within the SCOBY work together to metabolize the sugars into alcohol, carbon dioxide, and various organic acids. Primary fermentation usually takes 7-11 days and is monitored via pH and taste testing. Once complete, it is transferred to secondary fermentation vessels where the KT is infused with different flavors, according to the brewer’s preference or customer favorites. All of our KT is made with fruit, juice, and/or herbs and spices, and organic products are used whenever possible. Secondary fermentation takes approximately 2-7 days, depending on what flavor the final product will be. The finished product is then kegged, chilled, and lagered for 2-4 weeks before going on draft.
Our house-brewed kombucha was first introduced in November 2014 during San Diego Beer Week at the Lodge in Torrey Pines Chef’s Celebration. Since then, it has been on tap at San Diego Brewing Company in Grantville, offering various flavors and combinations. The total number of different kombucha teas brewed by San Diego Brewing Company has reached over forty, and it is now pouring at our newly-opened North Park tasting room. Recently, we have experimented with kombucha on nitro and have been quite satisfied with the results.
BREWER BIOGRPAHY – CARY DINAPOLI
In 2011, kombucha was brought to Cary’s attention from a friend. She researched kombucha further, discovered its many health and nutritional benefits, and promptly added it to her daily nutritional regimen and to those she consulted and trained.
Cary came across a recipe to brew her own kombucha and began making kombucha tea (KT) as a hobby in small batches, experimenting with secondary flavors and combinations. Gradually, she increased production and now has three 120-L fermentation vessels at the San Diego Brewing Company location in North Park. Her hobby has since turned into a passion and the result is a product viewed as a model of excellence – a paragon.