I’ve taken notes on quite a few different batches of kombucha that aren’t yet documented in a blog post. This is one of those…
I’ve made glucose kombucha before. I made it again in hopes of stopping fermentation before all of the sugar fermented out. I wouldn’t expect it to taste sour at that point (despite a relatively low acidity), but it would probably be rather drinkable while still imparting the usual probiotic benefits to my vinegar-phobic family. If nothing else, it could be used to make lemonade, sweet tea, etc.
I didn’t watch this closely enough, so fermentation progressed farther than I would have liked. After 16 days the pH was 3.0, just like last time. The flavor was very dry (not sweet and very astringent), but not very sour. I hoped to salvage the situation by at least picking more appropriate flavors than last time:
- Elderberries: after steeping 1 TB of elderberries for over 1 week, there’s a definite elderberry flavor, but not really any added sweetness. I guess elderberry enhances the sweetness of flavors, but doesn’t really add much sweetness itself.
- Goji Berries: as with the elderberries, a week on 1 TB of goji berries has added a nice fruit flavor, but none of the sweetness it needed.
- Strisselspalt: I added 2TB of strisselspalt hop pellets to see what would happen. In one week, not much happened. There was a pleasant but faint hop aroma, but it was too subtle for me, and there was little to no flavor impact. Strisselspalt is a very mild variety of hops (flavor-wise) that it has a great reputation for aroma, so the results aren’t too surprising. In the end, I decided that either strisselspalt doesn’t pair well with kombucha, or it simply needs more steep time. (I did eventually try a longer steep, but I’ll report on that later.) This site has an interesting infographic on the sensory characteristics of strisselspalt.