DIY High Alcohol Kombucha Brew Recipe by Boochcraft
If you’ve been itching to brew your own high alcohol kombucha at home, here is a step-by-step recipe by Boochcraft that will yield 1 gallon of hard kombucha at approximately 4-7% ABV.
By The Beer Community on Feb. 28, 2019
Shared from Boochcraft.
Upgrading your typical kombucha to a fizzy hard kombucha beverage is no simple task. It takes a careful eye, precise measuring, and plenty of patience during the fermentation processes. But, you totally got this.
Boochcraft’s Do-It-Yourself Boozy Kombucha Recipe:
Step 1: Purchase a container for your booch.
We like large mason jars or multi-gallon jugs like this.
Step 2: Get your hands on a SCOBY.
You can buy one online, beg a friend who brews kombucha at home to gift you one, or just buy your favorite unpasteurized organic kombucha to use as the starter culture.
Wait… What the heck is a SCOBY?!
“SCOBY” stands for Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast. It is a thick, rubbery and cloudy mass that aids the fermentation process. A SCOBY is a living environment for the bacteria and yeast that transform the tea into tangy, fizzy kombucha.
SCOBY’s can also be referred to as “kombucha mothers” or “kombucha mushrooms.”
Step 3: Brew tea.
For 1 gallon of boozy booch, you will need to brew 14 cups of organic black tea with 8 tea bags in spring (or RO) water and 1 cup of organic sugar.
Step 4: Allow the tea to cool before adding in your gallon fermenter.
Add your SCOBY and the starter culture liquid that come along with it. Allow to ferment for 10 days with a clean t-shirt or breathable cloth secured over the top to prevent fruit flies from accessing the inside. The fermentation organisms require oxygen flow through the cloth to reproduce and grow more SCOBY and beneficial enzymes/acids.
Step 5: Second ferment time!
After step 4, you essentially have “normal” kombucha with only a trace amount of alcohol. The pH has dropped considerably as more beneficial acids are produced. If it’s too acidic (like vinegar) the second fermentation may not start or complete, so make sure to taste along the way (days 7-10) and catch before it becomes overly sour.
Ordinarily, you would add any flavorings of choice and then distribute into smaller jars or swing top bottles. But to make your booch boozy, you’ll need a second round of fermentation.
For this second round, dissolve 1 cup of organic sugar in 1 cup of warm spring (or RO) water. Once it cools, add ¾ teaspoon of a dehydrated champagne yeast with characteristics that appeal to you. We like yeast that produces fruity aromatics and flavor rather than spicy or neutral, but go for whatever sounds funky and interesting!
Within a few minutes the yeast and sugar mixture will begin to foam, this means the yeast has re-awakened from their slumber and ready to eat up all the sugars to produce more alcohol. If the yeast does not foam, dump the sugar water into your compost and try again with another packet of yeast. Once you’re happy with your active yeast, add the mixture to your gallon of kombucha and sufficiently stir it in. Adding dry yeast directly into the fermenter without allowing to rehydrate first tend to die off and not achieve their foothold against the other active bacteria and yeast who already staked their claim in the environment.
Step 6: Wait for the magic.
This time instead of a cloth cover you’ll want to loosely close the lid over the top. The idea is to only allow positive pressure of CO2 to build and escape rather than air entering the vessel. Allow an additional 7-14 fermentation days somewhere with relatively consistent temperature and low light while the ABV climbs. You’ll know it’s working when you see bubbles forming and rising to the surface!
Step 7: Add flavors and bottle.
After 7-14 days of second fermentation, it’s time to add flavors! Give it a taste first and notice how dry and boozy it is before deciding your juice additions to balance it out. Add any organic fruit juices that you’d like. For inspiration, browse our flavors page. As a final step, you’ll want to pour the jug of booch into smaller, single serve bottles. We like glass swing tops or mason jars! Try to use slightly more juice than desirable for the next step to carbonate in the bottle, and this time close the lids as tightly as possible.
Step 8: Bottle condition.
By using a little bit of extra juice the sugars will continue to ferment and trap the carbonation in the bottles for the delicious zippiness we all love that helps unlock the aromas and flavors of the finished product. Leave the bottles at room temp for 24-48 hours to build carbonation, then throw in the fridge before they get too fizzy! Pop open your amazing creation and revel in the joy of fermentation mastery!
The Boochcraft team is blazing the trail with California’s very first hard kombucha.
Boochcraft was founded in Chula Visa, California in an effort to create an alcoholic beverage where you can enjoy the party… and the day after.
At Boochcraft we are on a mission to inspire people to live an exceptional life. One that is bold, adventurous, and full of excitement. A life rich with meaningful relationships and a supportive community. Simply put, to live cultured. It’s not just our tagline, it’s our anthem.
Boochcraft was founded by three friends from Ocean Beach, San Diego. They sought out to create a hard kombucha that tasted great, inspired connection, and was based in quality.
Seeing the need for an alcoholic beverage with integrity, they created a craft brew you could not only enjoy, but also feel good about drinking. Millions of SCOBY’s later, Boochcraft was born with a mission to inspire vitality, support local farms, build community and have fun along the way.
What sets boochcraft apart from other alcoholic kombucha brands?
Boochcraft is the first hard kombucha brand in California. We believe in sustainability. We compost our juice and tea scraps, wash our brewery with Dr. Bronner’s soap, use only certified organic ingredients, and source our produce from local California farms whenever possible. We are committed to finding new and innovative ways to conserve resources and limit waste.
True success to us isn’t measured by the amount of profit, but rather the positive impact we are making in the community. We give 1% of gross sales to nonprofits that promote sustainable food systems. We give our time, product, and any other resources we have to make the local and global community a better place.
Being gluten free, raw, vegan, certified organic, with livingprobiotics and 7% ABV, Boochcraft is sure to please any dietary restrictions and accommodate health focused individuals who still want to enjoy a little bubbly buzz.
Boochcraft Kombucha Flavors:
All ingredients are fresh, even cold pressing the organic juices in-house.
Where To Buy Boochcraft Kombucha:
Boochcraft is available for purchase throughout California, and have just entered the AZ market, and will announce 2 new states this Spring. Click here to find a store near you.
For more information about Boochcraft, visit their website.
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