The Cold Facts About Hard Kombucha
New brands of kombucha drinks have been taking our local grocery stores by storm. This probiotic drink has become more popular recently because of the potential benefits. But what about hard kombucha? What is it and why are people making the switch from more traditional cocktails to this newer creation?
We have all the deets for you below.
Difference Between Traditional and Hard Kombucha
Traditional and hard kombuchas start the same way. Both start with a kombucha culture and first fermentation. Unlike traditional kombucha which has a similar alcohol content to vinegar or ripe fruits, hard kombucha is brewed to be boozy.
Popular brands like BoochCraft and Wild Tonic can have alcohol levels from 4-7 percent ABV (comparable to most beers).
What is Hard Kombucha?
Hard kombucha comes from the same ingredients as traditional kombucha. A mixture of sugar, tea, yeast, and bacteria that create the bubbly drink perfect for a sparkling cocktail. Both types use the same kombucha brewing process. The alcohol content in hard kombucha comes from stretching out the fermentation process more times and adding extra sugar and yeast.
Some homebrewers swear by champagne yeast for the repeated fermentations. Sign us up! Many store-bought brands also kick the flavors up a notch with fruit and herb mixes. You can do the same with your own home brews.
Use a hydrometer or refractometer to find the exact alcohol measurement. Or brew to taste (adults only, obvs). Then infuse your preferred flavors when bottling, same as a traditional second fermentation. Voila, delish hard kombucha!
Why Trade My White Claw for Hard Kombucha?
Maybe during quarantine you’ve taught yourself to speak 3 languages. Good for you. But if you’re like the rest of us, you’ve probably discovered 105 ways to make a hard seltzer cocktail. So why trade in your White Claw slushie for hard kombucha or kombucha hard cider?
For all the reasons below:
- Hard Kombucha tastes amazing with the same bubbly, fizzy goodness of a seltzer drink
- They are packed with vitamins and antioxidants which help prevent hangovers (we’ll take it!)
- Far less sugar, carbs, and calories than most traditional cocktails or alcoholic beverages
- A great alternative to beer for those with gluten sensitivities
- Kombucha health benefits such as probiotics are still included
- Did we mention they taste amazing??
Hard Kombucha vs. Kombucha Cocktail
While creating your own hard kombucha or buying your favorite hard booch can be great, and even simpler option is creating your own kombucha cocktail. You can turn almost any cocktail into a kombucha cocktail by just substituting the mixer for your favorite flavor of booch. We love sipping a refreshing, sparkling cocktail poolside. And with the added kombucha benefits, who wouldn’t? To join the fun, try our favorite booch-tail below.
Sunshine Summer Mule
- Full copper mug or cocktail mug of choice with crushed ice
- Add 1-2oz of favorite vodka (we’re drinking LA local Loft & Bear vodka)
- Add 4-5oz of homemade Joshua Tree ginger kombucha (or store-bought of choice like Brew Dr. Kombucha Just Ginger)
- Add juice from 1 freshly squeezed lime
- Mix to taste and garnish with fresh citrus wedges and mint
*For a yummy mocktail, replace vodka with additional kombucha flavor of choice and add a splash of sprite or 7up.
Obviously, due to alcohol content, only those 21 and over should consume hard alcohol. The same rules apply as any other alcoholic beverage. So put the kids to bed and enjoy the perfect summer drink.