Kombucha is pronounced Kom-bu-cha. (Many people call it Kambucha with an a, but the real pronunciation is with an o). “Cha” comes from the Chinese word “tea” and “Kombu” actually means sea-weed. Today Kombucha has got little to do with seaweed, but are often used in combination with teas of different types.
Very simply explained then a well-tasting kombucha has a slight sour/sweet taste with light carbonations. It is a fermented beverage often made with teas and added flavours (such as fruits or juices). However, in reality Kombucha can be made directly out of fruit juices or tisanes (herbal infusions) with a bit of ingenuity.
Kombucha is made from a sweetened tea added a so-called SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast) which works together with the sweetened tea by “eating” the sugar and firstly creating alcohol out of this. Secondly, the alcohol is by help of the bacteria turned into the sourness of the kombucha. If the fermentation of the kombucha is not stopped at the right, the drink will loose all its sweetness and will be for most people undrinkable.
The origin of Kombucha is not very precise, but historically Kombucha has been made in Japan, China, Korea, Russia etc. Today, it has become a very popular drink in Northern America and all over the world. Kombucha’s are fermenting in many home-kitchens to become a rather acid beverage often because it is considered good for your health, due to the live-bacteria in the drink. This is not scientifically proven. Many also manage to create a delicious drink with the right balance of sour/sweetness and slight bubbles with a vinous taste. Most Kombucha include very low level of alcohol.