My first experience with kombucha, the ancient fermented drink, was a home brew made by a slightly loopy nutritionist. She called it mushroom tea. It looked ’shroomy — tawny and cloudy, with bits floating in it including something that looked like a used condom.
“It’s the scoby,” she said, brightly.
Whatever a scoby was, it wasn’t pretty. Still, I was game. I drank it down. It was slightly sweet, yet tangy and sharp, almost vinegary, with a little bit of fizz, and then the rubbery scoby.
I waited for the secrets of the universe to reveal themselves. Years have passed, and kombucha didn’t bring them to me.
But the secrets of kombucha, those I can share with you:
- Kombucha is sweetened tea that’s been fermented from 1 to 3 weeks.