Who makes the best kombucha?
Craving a kombucha but don’t know where to start? Let the experts guide you into the world of funky flavour and gut-friendly ingredients, with the results from our blind taste test of the country’s finest
Looking for the best kombuchas to buy? Read on to find the results of our taste test for the best fermented tea drink.
What is kombucha?
Tangy, funky and fizzy, kombucha is a fermented sweetened tea that’s exploded in popularity recently as drinkers embrace its distinctively sour yet refreshing flavour. Click here to find out how to make your own…
How the best kombucha taste test worked
Four members of the olive team conducted a blind taste test to find the best kombuchas, awarding gold, silver and bronze awards to the ones we were most impressed with. Entries all had to be original flavour.
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The results for the best kombucha taste test
Comments: Green and black tea combined with yerba mate and rooibos provides a well-balanced yet complex flavour profile to this funky kombucha. With notes of vanilla and tomato on the nose followed by floral flavours on the tongue, this is an all-round refreshing drink and wowed our judging panel.
Comments: Organic oolong and organic green tea, fermented with filtered water and organic cane sugar give this kombucha a strong acidic tang. A well-balanced, refreshing drink, with a lingering flavour.
Comments: Thanks to the fragrant mate leaves, lime blossom and lemon verbena tea herbal extracts, this original kombucha has a distinctive and gently sweet floral flavour, with notes of honey on the nose. With a gentle fizz, it’s a lighter booch option.
Other kombuchas we tried
MOMO, 6 x 300ml bottles, £26.50, momo-kombucha.com. Buy now
Remedy, £2.99/330ml; planetorganic.com. Buy now
PRESS, £3.50/275ml; press-london.com. Buy now
Clever Kombucha, £35/case of 12, 300ml; cleverkombucha.co.uk. Buy now
Lo Bros, £2/330ml; ocado.com. Buy now
Kombucha Kat, £1.99/250ml; ocado.com. Buy now
Real Kombucha Dry Dragon, £29.99/case of 12, 275ml; realkombucha.co.uk. Buy now
Rude Health, £1.99/250ml; Waitrose. Buy now
Equinox Kombucha, £36/case of 20, 275ml; Amazon. Buy now
Captain Kombucha, £2.99/400ml; Holland and Barrett. Buy now
We've since tried...
A new development in the world of no/low drinks is the emergence of elegant fizzy kombuchas and teas designed to be drunk as one would a sparking wine. Ama Brewery in the Basque Country is an exciting addition to this category, creating sparkling kombuchas that are aged in the bottle for a minimum of six months – akin to a pét-nat wine or champagne. The brewery is headed by Dani Lasa and Ramón Perisé, former and current R&D chefs at famed two-Michelin-star restaurant Mugaritz in San Sebastian, and their kombucha is made with tea from the Rare Tea Company and spring water from the Basque Country.
Ama's first two expressions are striking – more layered, full-bodied and rounded than many other kombuchas we've tried. BI, made with wild lemongrass, is gently bubbly and sweet with lime and white blossom notes. Try drinking as an aperitif. BAT, made with sencha tea, is grassily herbaceous, with umami seaweed notes, and would work well sipped alongside fish and seafood.
Though pricing may make Ama a choice for special occasions, it's sure to impress someone looking for no-low drinks that don't compromise on taste and complexity.
A light and fruity beverage with a delicate effervescence and well balanced sweetness. Blighty Booch’s kombucha is brewed with organic black tea from Hunan China, resulting in a refreshingly tangy flavour profile. As well as the original, we also especially enjoyed their organic ginger flavour, whose warming, spicy notes perfectly balance the tea's astringency.
Another stellar offering from our taste test winners, this fizzy kombucha taps into the trend for high-end, elegantly packaged sparkling teas. Fermented using loose-leaf oolong, this has a lovely clean, fresh character, gently sweet with floral elderflower and delicate fruit notes, and sprightly acidity. It would make a great swap for champagne or prosecco when it comes to celebratory occasions, and also works as a crisp aperitif.
Taste test conducted and written by Ellie Edwards