Maybe you’ve seen those “BPA-Free” stickers on plastic water bottles before. Having them labeled that way makes it seem like a dangerous chemical, but you can find BPA in all sorts of things: DVDs, shatter-resistant eyeglasses, baby bottles… it’s even in resin that lines some cans of food, and in thermal paper receipts that you get at the store.
Good news for anyone who has paid upward of $5 for one bottle of kombucha: There is a cheaper option. Just as with beer, home-brewed kombucha is having a moment. Proponents of the fizzy stuff maintain it is nothing short of a magical elixir that can cure all ills, while scientific research is more hesitant to jump on the kombucha bandwagon.
Is kombucha consumption a fleeting fad to be ignored, or is the beverage’s popularity well deserved? Let’s get to the bottom of the fermenting barrel to find out whether kombucha is as great as its fans claim, and figure out how to make and utilize your own brew at home.