6 Kombucha Cocktails
You may already be familiar with kombucha, a fermented tea made by adding bacteria, yeast and sugar (sometimes fruit juice and other flavorings are also mixed in). But have you enjoyed it in a cocktail?
Bartenders everywhere are adding ’bucha to hooch, using its naturally sweet-tart flavor and slight effervescence to enliven libations. Many turn to local producers, and some even make their own.
Grab your favorite bottle and give this trend a try at home.
Recipe courtesy The Wren, New York City
At this Bowery hotspot, the beverage director, Krissy Harris, relies heavily on seasonal ingredients for her ever-changing cocktail menu, including this springtime sipper. Harris infuses her own gin with Meyer lemons. We’ve subbed a citrus-forward craft gin bottling below.
- ½ teaspoon pink peppercorns
- 3 strawberries, plus one for garnish
- 1½ ounces Four Peel Gin
- ¼ teaspoon agave nectar
- Pinch of Himalayan pink salt
- 4 ounces Health-Ade Kombucha Ginger Lemon
- Strawberry, for garnish
In cocktail shaker, use a muddler to crush the peppercorns. Add strawberries and muddle with crushed pepper. Add gin, agave, salt and ice. Shake well, and strain into a highball glass over fresh ice. Top with kombucha. Garnish with a strawberry.
Recipe courtesy Restaurant Latour at Crystal Spring Resort, Sussex County, NJ
Get a double dose of apple with this cocktail created by the beverage director, Stephen Thomas. Tuthilltown, a spirits producer in New York’s Hudson Valley, distills vodka from fresh-pressed apple cider.
- 2 large mint leaves
- ½ ounce fresh-pressed apple juice
- 1 lime wheel
- 1½ ounces Tuthilltown Indigenous Apple Vodka
- 2 ounces Reed’s Goji Ginger kombucha
- Sprig of mint, for garnish
- Candied ginger, for garnish
In mixing glass, muddle the mint, apple juice and lime. Add ice and the vodka. Stir until chilled. Double-strain into a double rocks glass, and top with the kombucha. Garnish with a sprig of mint and candied ginger.
Recipe courtesy The Punch Room, Charlotte, NC
Created by mixologist Bob Peters, this produce-packed drink features kombucha from the only USDA-certified organic microbrewery in North Carolina.
- 4 ounces Sauza Blue Tequila
- Juice of 1 orange
- Juice of 2 limes
- 4 ounces Lenny Boy Beet Ginger Kombucha
- Simple syrup, to taste
- Sliced jalapeño, for garnish
- Cilantro sprigs, for garnish
In a mixing glass, combine the liquid ingredients with ice and stir. Divide between two hurricane glasses. Garnish with the jalapeño and cilantro. Serves 2.
Recipe courtesy The Brooklyneer, New York City
Created by co-owners of The Brooklyneer, Aron Watman and Billy Waite, this tall, cool cocktail is just right when the mercury rises.
- 2 ounces Absolut Brooklyn vodka
- 1 ounce ginger syrup
- ½ ounce lemon juice
- Mombucha ginger-mint kombucha
- Seltzer (optional)
- Lemon wheel, for garnish
Scoop ice into a tall Collins glass. Add the first three ingredients. Top with kombucha and a splash of seltzer, if desired. Garnish with lemon wheel. Serve with a straw.
Recipe courtesy Seed, New Orleans
Riffing on the classic Dark & Stormy, this ginger-cayenne pick-me-up showcases two NOLA-made products: Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced Rum and Big Easy Bucha (created by Wine Enthusiast Contributing Travel Editor Alexis Korman).
- 2 ounces Old New Orleans Cajun Spiced Rum
- ¾ ounce fresh lime juice
- ¾ ounce simple syrup
- Big Easy Bucha Cajun Kick Kombucha, to top
Combine the rum, juice and syrup in a shaker tin filled with ice. Shake well, then strain over ice into a highball glass. Top with the kombucha.
Recipe courtesy Alchemy Kombucha & Culture and Milan & Turin Co., San Antonio, TX
This San Antonio start-up focused on brewing its own kombucha opened in April. Working with Javier Gutierrez and Joe Hernandez, the minds behind Milan & Turin Co. and start-up consultants themselves, cocktails naturally feature their crafted kombucha.
- 1½ ounces Pimms No.1
- ½ ounce fresh lemon juice
- Element Jasmine-Hibiscus Kombucha
- 1 cucumber wheel, for garnish
- 1 strawberry, for garnish
- Mint sprig, for garnish
- Ground sumac, for garnish
In a cocktail shaker, combine the Pimms, lemon juice, kombucha and ice. Shake well, and strain into a Collins glass over cobbled or crushed ice. Garnish with remaining ingredients.
- 1Pretty in Pink
- 2Get Up and Goji
- 3Fiesta Punch
- 4The Stoop
- 5Cajun Culture
- 6The Fixed Element