Q and A with Capital Kombucha

Carrie Murphy

When I tasted Capital Kombucha's kombucha tea a few weeks ago at an event in DC, I knew I had to find out more about the company that makes such a delicious, healthy beverage. Kombucha, if you didn't know, is a fermented tea drink that contains a wide variety of beneficial bacteria, which can help your digestive system, energy levels, skin, and more. I've been drinking kombucha for a while, but hadn't tasted any as good as the one brewed by Capital Kombucha. I talked to one of the company's founders, Andreas Schneider, about bringing a healthy drink to the District, Capital Kombucha's ingenious flavors, and more. 


1. What made you decide to start Capital Kombucha?

I was brewing kombucha at home. Just a hobby.  No intention of becoming an entrepreneur.  I started sharing some of the home brews with people, including my friends John Lee and Dan Lieberman, who eventually started Capital Kombucha with me.  Each of us were drawn to kombucha because it’s a wellness product and has real potential to be an alternative to the sugary sodas and artificial beverages that pervade our culture.  We were also unsatisfied with the kombucha being sold commercially and the limited availability in the area.  Instead of complaining, we decided to act. 


2. Are you a kombucha lover yourself?

Very much so. It was recommended to me by my father – he's an organic farmer and is always on the lookout for healthy new food and drinks.  He swears by kombucha and always has it with him during the summer when he spends up to ten hours a day on our tractor cutting hay. I started drinking it years ago to cool down from long days working on the farm and was immediately hooked.


3. How and where is Capital Kombucha's kombucha tea made?

We handcraft our tea blends in a commercial kitchen right here in the District. We're moving to a larger production space in the coming months, but the process will stay the same – local kombucha tea made with some extra TLC from the founders.


4. Which of Capital Kombucha's flavors is your favorite? And how are the flavors developed?

Dan has a gift for flavors – he is undoubtedly the taste guru.  Going to local farmer markets with him is always a laugh, since he gets a bit intense about things, as if he was the Sherlock Holmes of produce.  You know those people that are constantly touching all the vegetables and smelling everything?  Dan’s that guy.  My personal favorite is Basil Lemongrass.  It's the very first one we tried.  I still remember the moment when we tasted the sample batch and thought, “Well, this is too good not to share.”


5. Is there anything else you'd like Washington Eats readers to know about Capital Kombucha?

One, this is a labor of love for us, period.  Our goal is to better serve the community and demonstrate that being health conscious doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice taste, especially in beverages.  Two, we are accessible and love feedback.  Three, our take on kombucha is ideal for cocktails.  Hey, if you are drinking, might as well be healthy as possible in the process.

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