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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is kombucha?

Kombucha is a probiotic beverage usually made by fermenting green or black tea. Kombucha has been drunk by humans for thousands of years to help with digestion and overall health.

How is Kombucha made?

Kombucha is made by fermenting green or black sweetened tea with a particular type of bacteria and yeast usually for 7-30 days. During the fermentation, the kombucha bacteria and yeast transform the tea, sugars and other components in the tea into a unique tasting beverage containing healthful ingredients, mostly acetic acid, antioxidants, b vitamins, and beneficial bacteria.

How is Water Kefir made?

Water kefir is made by fermenting sweetened water with a particular type of kefir bacteria and yeast, usually for 1-3 days. Seattle Kombucha uses organic cane sugar, organic coconut palm sugar, organic molasses, organic figs, other dried fruits, lemons and sea salts to make our delicious water kefir.

During the fermentation, the water kefir bacteria and yeast transform the water and sugary mix into a unique tasting, probiotic beverage containing healthful ingredients, mostly lactic acid, acetic acid, various minerals, b vitamins, and beneficial bacteria.

How should I store my Seattle Kombucha and Water Kefir?

Unpasteurized kombucha and water kefir is a live, raw, probiotic product. It needs to stay refrigerated between 34-38 degrees Fahrenheit until you are ready to drink it. And you should generally drink it within 6 months of the canning date.

If you are traveling with unpasteurized kombucha... and unable to put it in a refrigerator, keep the kombucha and water kefir as cool as possible using a cooler or cooler bag filled with ice or freezer packs. Since it is unpasteurized, it will continue to ferment, causing the yeast and bacteria to be active, building pressure in the can, changing the flavor, and possibly bursting the can if it is left out of refrigeration too long, or stored at too high a temperature.

Shelf Stable kombucha and water kefir doesn't require refrigeration.
If the Seattle Kombucha has been shipped to you without cooling packs, it has been pasteurized to make it shippable and shelf stable. You can keep it in the fridge, or you can keep it in your pantry until ready to drink. Recommended shelf life is still 6 months after the canning date marked on bottom of can but it may last much longer. Pasteurizing the kombucha allows us to ship it to you, and for you to travel with it. You still get the benefits of the beneficial acids and vitamins created during the fermentation process. The pasteurization kills the yeast that would otherwise continue to ferment if not pasteurized.

What happens if my kombucha/water kefir is not refrigerated?

Depends on whether it is pasteurized or not.

Pasteurized kombuchais pasteurized so that it can be stored at room temperature. You still get the benefits of the beneficial acids and vitamins created during the fermentation process. The pasteurization kills the yeast that would otherwise continue to ferment if not pasteurized.

If your kombucha/water kefir is unpasteurized and is left out of refrigeration... if there is any sugar in the bottle/can, your kombucha/water kefir will begin to ferment again and become more sour and change flavor as any live yeast and bacteria will continue to consume the remaining sugars and create more CO2 gas and potentially more alcohol.

The pressure inside the container will increase and may increase so high that the bottle cap expands and may POP! or burst and fizz all over the place when opened. BE VERY CAREFUL IF THE CAN OR BOTTLE CAP IS TIGHT AND PUFFED OUT. If you are talking about canned kombucha, the can will get very tight and the top part may even BURST out or BURST open. 

IF YOU ARE NOT SURE WHETHER THE KOMBUCHA IS PASTEURIZED OR NOT, ERR ON THE SAFE SIDE AND STORE IT IN THE REFRIGERATOR.

WARNING: Some cans or bottles of unpasteurized kombucha or water kefir could explode on its own if left out of refrigeration for too long. When kombucha is left out of the fridge and it continues to ferment, the flavor will also change to become more sour.

WARNING!
If unpasteurized kombucha is left out too long, (if there is enough sugar in the bottle) the carbonation and the pressure inside the bottle may become too high causing the bottle to fizz all over the place when you open it, or the bottle may even explode. SO... BE VERY CAREFUL IF YOU ARE GOING TO LEAVE YOUR UNPASTEURIZED KOMBUCHA OUT OF THE FRIDGE! Or just keep it in the fridge until you are ready to drink it.

NOTE: Even refrigerated, unpasteurized kombucha continues to ferment. It just happens at a slower rate in the cold of the refrigerator. Over time, even at refrigerator temperatures, the flavors will change, the CO2 will increase, and the level of alcohol may increase.

I accidentally left my kombucha or water kefir out of the fridge for a day. What should I do?

Again, depends whether or not it's pasteurized.

If pasteurized, no problem. Put it back in the fridge to get it cold for when you want to drink it.

If unpasteurized, and you leave it out for a day... don't open it right away. Before opening it, return it to the fridge or a cold cooler as soon as possible. Cooling it will allow the gas to go back into the liquid and reduce fizzing over. After it cools down, you can open it slowly, preferably over a clean bowl in case it has gotten more carbonated. That way, in case it fizzes over, you can save the beverage using the bowl and towel method below, then transfer it to a glass. If it doesn't fizz over when you open it, no big deal. Better safe, then sorry.

WARNING: Always take precaution when opening an unpasteurized bottle that has been left out of refrigeration and then re-chilled.

Pro Tip: REDUCING LOSS WHEN OPENING A QUESTIONABLE BOTTLE/CAN
Place the bottle/can of unpasteurized kombucha/water kefir in a bowl larger than the bottle/can itself in order to capture any overspill in the case your kombucha fizzes over. You could also put a clean kitchen towel or rag over the top when you are opening it in case it does fizz over a bit to shield your face. 
This will minimize the mess and make sure your kombucha doesn't go totally to waste! 

Can I drink kombucha/water kefir warm?

Yes. Some flavors of kombucha/water kefir taste great when served warm, including our Lady Grey. You could, like a wine, take it out of the fridge and open it several minutes or hours before serving it to let it breathe and warm up. Feel free to experiment with drinking different flavors from different brands at different temperatures. You might like the taste better after it's been left out for a bit to 'open up'.

Also, sometimes people find cold, carbonated beverages difficult to drink and prefer them a little warmer. Warm or cold is fine.

And if you think the carbonation is too high, you can mix with a spoon or fork in a glass to reduce the carbonation.

If you are going to leave a bottle/can or two out to experiment with drinking it warm, or you want to let the fermentation continue because you prefer your kombucha/water kefir less sweet, just make sure you open the bottle and keep the cap loose to prevent the pressure from getting too high in the bottle as it warms up. You can also pour the kombucha/water kefir into a glass first before letting it sit for a while to get warm.

I like the taste of kombucha/water kefir, but sometimes it's too fizzy for me. What can I do to reduce the carbonation?

To reduce carbonation, we recommend transferring the bottle/can of kombucha/water kefir to a glass. If that doesn't reduce it enough, you can stir the kombucha/water kefir with a fork or spoon to reduce the level of carbonation.

You can also open the bottle/can and leave it open so that the carbonation reduces naturally.

Is there alcohol in Seattle Kombucha/water kefir?

Yes. But very little. Seattle Kombucha/water kefir contains less than 0.5% alcohol, which categorizes it as a non-alcoholic beverage.

Because kombucha/water kefir is a fermented beverage, it naturally contains a trace amount of alcohol as the yeast converts sugar to alcohol, water, CO2 and acids.

One of the reasons that kombucha/water kefir has so little alcohol compared to beer or wine is that the bacteria present in kombucha/water kefir convert (eat) some of the alcohol and magically transform it into beneficial acids like acetic acid, lactic acid (water kefir), gluconic acid and glucaronic acid which aid digestion.

If you are avoiding alcohol due to pregnancy, allergies, sensitivities, or religious beliefs, you should not drink kombucha/water kefir.

I want to order a keg of Seattle Kombucha/water kefir. How many people will a keg serve?

Our kegs are 5 gallons each and serve 50 12oz servings. If you prefer cans, or don't have a kegerator, we can offer our 12oz cans at wholesale prices if you buy 48 or more at a time. Another benefit of buying cans instead of kegs is that you can mix and match the flavors.

Order Processing, Delivery, and Shipping

Order Processing of Home Brewing Supplies:All orders are generally processed within 2 business days of receipt, and scheduled for delivery as soon as possible. If we have the product in stock and ready to go. If we need to make more product, it make take a bit longer. 

Return Policy for Kombucha/Water Kefir

100% Satisfaction Guaranteed. We want you to love our product as much as we do. If you are not completely satisfied, please contact us at (425) 985-2364 or email orders@seattlekombucha.com so we can ensure you have the best possible experience with our company!

Since we can't take back returns of food and beverage products, if you have any difficulty with shipping or a product, please take a photo of the item and packaging, and a photo of the batch codes on the bottom of the cans. This allows us to keep track of any problems that occur and why. Thank you!

Wholesale Inquiries - How Can I Become a Reseller?

If you are interested in becoming a reseller for Seattle Kombucha Company, please call or text Wayne Greenfield at (425) 985-2364 or email orders@seattlekombucha.com.  We look forward to working with you to provide Seattle Kombucha to your valued customers.