What the heck is floating in that jar?


My unique twist of keeping that fruit in the jar was done with great fear and trembling.  Would it freak people out to see floaties?  But, I can tell you, the risk was worth it!  The overwhelming response has been amazing.  They love it.  I think mostly because it proves my product is authentic.  Kombucha is a crazy living and active community of beneficial bacteria and yeast.  A bit unpredictable, too.  So don’t expect every single jar to taste exactly the same.  I just cannot control those lil buggars, sometimes.

Here’s some reasons I keep the fruit, herbs and spices in your jar of booch:

  1. The kombucha continues to draw the goodness and flavors out of the fruit in your refrigerator  for days.  The fruit is keeping those lil guys happy!
  2.   The taste keeps improving with the slow fermentation.  Even the color gets prettier with time.
  3. It’s authentic!  You will see lil SCOBYs (the culture in kombucha) forming.  Don’t be grossed out, please.  They tell you that what you are drinking in the real deal and your gut will thank you for it! Just take a fork and lift it out, maybe chase someone around with it first. LOL!

Some tips:

~Strain your kombucha into your glass for a beautiful presentation.  Garnish with fresh fruit, mint or a sprinkle of ginger.

~The spent fruit will be sour, so not so great to eat BUT you can add to smoothies.

~Cold slows the ferment way down, so if your booch is not bubbly you can leave out overnight or add extra fruit and seal tightly.

~ Use a straw and bypass the floaties.



Cheers to your healthly gut!

Liz The Kombucha Lady


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The best kombucha you ever tasted?

“This is the best kombucha I ever tasted!” I just love the quote above, and I hear it a lot.  It amazes me every time.  I have tested the other brands of kombucha and very few live up to The Kombucha Lady and I am not just braggin’.  I have done some testing and research and I can explain to you why it tastes so so deeelicious. It’s mainly chemistry.  Like when you meet that person and you just click.  Sometimes even love happens, but there has to be chemistry.  The following combo of chemistry just happened to come together perfectly.   Love at first taste. #1 Reason:  Water source.  Our commercial kitchen has well water that is fed from the Catoctin Mountian aquifers.  This water is from way, way down, full of minerals, clean and hard.  The bacteria in my kombucha cultures just LOVE it!

#2  Culture: I grow amazing SCOBYs!  These are my special hybrid super race, perfectly balanced bacteria and yeast colonies.  I keep them super clean and fresh to produce consistently lovely ferments.

#3 Tea: only the absolute best organic teas.  I am constantly experimenting with different teas.  Every brew ferments differently. I absolutely LOVE experimenting and trying new combinations of herbs and all forms of tea. There are infinite possibilities. I have the best job ever.

#4  Temperature: Just so happens the fermenting closet is the exact perfect temperature.  This is classified information. Let’s just say it wasn’t what i wanted or expected, but it worked.

#5 Time:  We have the process down to a science.  Each kind of brew takes different time to ferment.  This is where experience has been the teacher.

#6 Testing:  Each kind of  fruit, herb or spice combo has been taste tested over and over to find the perfect taste pairing.  Oh that you were a taste tester at our house!  It’s always interesting let me say.  But certain herbs, say mint for one, may seem to be a great idea but ferment up rather gross or medicine-like in a final ferment.

#7 Tasting:  I really do taste test every single gallon I ferment.  And each gallon is tested as far a ph goes, which will affect taste.  This is the beauty of small batch local food and drink! Tea, Time, Taste, Test, Temperature…  .

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Spring on the farm!


Last year we planted 100s of berry plants so more of your kombucha can have our own farm raised fruit to infuse all the organic goodness.

How wonderful to see them peeking up and starting to flower.  Sorry about the bad photography but I am a farmer, yknow.

I planted strawberry plants all around the blueberries and it seems to be a agreeable arrangement for both.


Here are the tender new grape leaves unfurling on our Concord grapevines.


This is the new blackberry garden.  These plants are from an uncle who’s father-in-law created a new variety down at the University of Maryland.  It’s all a big secret but I have some of the plants!  BIG and bursting with blackberry flavor!  See all that wonderful compost from our happy cows?  Now THAT is organic growing and the basis of healthy fruit, veggies and herbs from Dodson’s Promised Land farm.

I planted strawberries in the asparagus bed last spring!  We will see how that goes, but so far so good!

And a peek at my gardening buddies Bodie and Curry!


Enjoy the outdoors!  It will lift your spirits!

The Kombucha Lady

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Organic? What’s in a name?


I do understand the need to feed our families nutritional, healthful foods free from chemicals and additives.  I am a believer in “organic”.  I also have seen a troubling trend in the last few years to place a trust in the wrong place.  Your trust should be in your farmer, your supplier, or your own garden, for Pete’s sake, not a label or an ad that has been “allowed” by the USDA.

Organic, as in organic food, is not even defined in Webster’s dictionary.  I think it’s defined so very loosely in the farm to table world.  Meaning, this food is safe from nasty chemicals and grown in fertile soil?  So we have come to trust the government to decide for us who meets their criteria for safe?  Does anyone see a problem here?

I do.

Just a teeny tiny little point from my perspective to make you think.  I have 30+ years of experience in growing, 2 years of vocational horticulture and a year of the Institute of Applied Agriculture, to back my opinion.

Hate to burst your bubble, but certified organic by the USDA doesn’t mean they don’t spray your fruit and veggies with chemicals.  They probably do spray less?  Here’s a good article to read about that issue.

I believe the healthiest food you could possibly obtain is from your own garden, or your local farmer who can show you exactly how they grow, or raise their animals. Small farmers and gardeners do not have the funds to use chemicals because they are expensive!  I also want to passionately plead with you that the SOIL is the important issue, not necessarily the chemicals used.

Healthy soil, full of good bacteria that break down the nutrients for the plant’s roots produce delicious and healthful fruit and veggies that will even survive a couple attacks from a beetle.  So the attention paid to what chemicals are used may be misplaced in my opinion,  when the bigger deal is the way a crop is grown.  Big production farms, organic or not, can’t love on the soil like I can in my little garden space.

The berries, herbs and veggies we grow here at Dodson’s Promised Land Farm are not certified organic by the USDA. I just don’t have the time or money right now to obtain this stamp of government approval.  But they are the healthiest, most amazing fruits and veggies I have ever eaten!  Homegrown at the PLF.  You can trust that certification.

Would love your opinion!

Liz  the kombucha lady

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Celebrate with Kombucha Cocktails! Recipes and links.


Yes?  The answer to the the much asked question, “Will the alcohol kill the probiotics?”  From all the reading and researching, I will take the safe stand and say, yes (question mark).

Several articles say that the good bacteria die slowly, so mix and drink your cocktail right away. Ha! ok.  On the other hand, several articles say the beneficial bacteria survive just fine.  My question is … how do you know?   I highly doubt any of this has been reliably tested.  So let’s use common sense.  Kombucha has about .05% alcohol content and the probiotics stay intact in that medium just fine.  They also survive low acidity, I know this because I can make new SCOBYs with very acidic kombucha.  Articles by Dr. Mercola, backed with research data, prove that food based probiotics survive our stomach acids.  So these are tough little buggars. So maybe….

BUT really? When you are imbibing, are you really thinking about probiotics?  Nah.  It’s too good to be true, right? Hmm.

I will make the case for using kombucha for cocktails:

~There are so many other health benefits from kombucha!  Digestive enzymes. Vitamin B.  Polyphenols  (or better known as antioxidants). Liver support.  And more.   Seems to me, these are all good support for the body while celebrating with the occasional mixed drink.

~Taste!  well yeAh.  Kombucha has that wonderful sweet- tart flavor that pairs well with your favorite mixer, wine or even beer.  My flavors will stir up your creative juices for amazing new cocktail recipes.  Spices and herbs, fruits and juices..already in there.  Makes it easy peasy.

~Bubbles! just enough and not too much to create that perfect balance.  Flavors that are more bubbly are Ginger Lime, Blackberry Sage and Apple Chai.

~Kombucha is an amazing hang over cure.  If you overdo it, you have your cure handy dandy.  But if you care about your health, please treat your body kindly and moderate! Hint: For each ounce of cocktail you drink, drink that same amount of water.

If you have a problem with drinking alcohol, please do your research before drinking kombucha.  It may not be for you.

My favorite mixed kombucha drinks:

Kombucha Lady’s Tropical Strawberry or Ginger Lime Booch-a-rita

Rub the rim with lime wedge and salt or sugar the rim!

6 oz Tropical Strawberry Kombucha or Ginger Lime Kombucha

3 oz Tequila

3 oz Triple Sec

3 oz Fresh lime juice

Honey or Agave to taste

The Kombucha Lady’s Sangria

Equal parts kombucha and wine or champagne, a spash of triple sec.  Add some seltzer water for more bubbles.  Add slices and cubes of fruit like limes for Ginger Lime, Strawberries with Tropical get the idea. Let it sit overnight in the fridge to infuse the flavors.  The possibilities are endless here! (Best to take out the used fruit that comes in the jar)

TKL Orange Spice Rum Runner

6 oz Orange Spice  (or Apple Chai Kombucha is good here as well)

3 oz Spiced Rum

shake of nutmeg on top and a fresh orange slice

TKL Boocha-tini


3 oz. TKL Blackberry Sage Kombucha

3 oz. vodka (I like Polish potato vodka)

2 oz. Triple sec

garnish with your choice of herbs..a sage leaf, thyme, rosemary or savory.

TKL Mojita

Check out the recipe here

Booch kidding!

 Equal part beer to kombucha.  We love a sour beer with Tropical Strawberry.  Try it! Check out this article so you don’t think I have lost my mind.

Other mixes: A Pale Ale with Ginger Lime,  Cheapo beer with Apple Chai… keep going.  Healthy beer.  It doesn’t get too much better in my book.

TKL Ginger Mule

6 oz Ginger Lime Kombucha

2-3 oz Gin (or vodka)

Twist of lime


How did your drink come out? Leave me a comment!






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Blast viruses outta there!

The Kombucha Lady ‘s brews are all about your health in a way that is delicious and fun.  But this recipe is serious business.

Tea- We are using an organic black tea for this brew- Pekoe and China black.  Black, white and green tea all contain antioxidants.  The higher tannins in black tea make it perfect for the kombucha culture to thrive and kick up a mega bubbly brew.  I brew this batch longer to lower the sugar content, therefore it will be a bit more tart.   read more about the health benefits of organic black tea.

bubbly glass of booch


Elderberries- Elderberries are well known for their high antioxidant content and anti viral abilities.  Their latin name, Sambucus, has been a familiar name on the medicine shelf for coughs, sore throats and colds for hundreds of years.  I grow elderberries and make a cold medicine with local honey and elderberries,for my own family.  Elderberry syrup is claimed to shorten the duration of viruses.  Elderberries are also used to help soothe the stomach and have diuretic and detoxifying properties.  Read more here from Dr. Mercola.   This is my source for organic elderberries.


Aronia Berries- I am so excited about Aronia berries!  They are off the chart high in antioxidants.  I found a local grower of organic Aronia berries, another small farmer just like us in Keymar, MD.  Read here for more information about Aronia berries. They are a cultivated version of the old chockberry bush.   I infuse these little guys into our kombucha for all their antioxidant goodness!


Drink up and be well this winter with our Berry Well Kombucha!


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Some answers to your kombucha questions!


It has been such a blast introducing The Kombucha Lady brews to all of you in the Frederick and Mt. Airy markets.  So far, so good and our “booch” is a big hit!  There are a couple of important issues I want to address first and foremost.  I am very passionate about healthy foods and drink. This is the drive and why I love brewing up this amazing drink full of goodness for your body.  So here are some pointers and facts for you as you start on your better health path by adding kombucha to your life.

PLF-RoseberryKombucha-6 (2)


If this is the first time for fermented or probiotic foods- for your tummy’s sake, please go easy.  Just a couple of gulps introduce billions of beneficial bacteria into your gut.  According to an article published in the journal Food Microbiology, the following probiotics make up this health elixir: Gluconacetobacter (>85 percent in most samples) Acetobacter (<2 percent) Lactobacillus (up to 30 percent in some samples) Zygosaccharomyces (>95 percent).  If you  have digestive issues, introducing fermented foods into your diet needs to be a slow and steady process.  You don’t want to experience “rapid detox”.

Does kombucha contain alcohol and can kids have it? 

Kombucha is a fermented tea, so some of the sugars are converted into alcohol by the yeast in the culture.  So if you are sensitive to either alcohol or caffeine you need to do your diligent research.  On average, kombucha has about 1% alcohol, sometimes a bit more in the warmer season or with certain sweeter fruits, like grapes.  My grand-kids LOVE kombucha and drink it every single day.  The minimal amount of alcohol has never been an issue for us, but I would like to be sensitive to those to whom it is an issue.  If you really want kombucha in your diet, you can either add some seltzer water, add it to juice or let it continue to ferment on your counter until the acids eat up all the sugars and alcohol.  It will then be vinegar but with all the kombucha benefits.


Yes, I brew these wonderful organic teas and add white sugar before fermenting.  Why? Kombucha cultures LOVE white sugar.  I don’t love sugar but my SCOBYs (Sybiotic Culture Of Baterica and Yeast) do and thrive best on white sugar.  They eat it up, literally.  They convert that sugar into amazing and wonderful probiotics,enzymes, B and C vitamins, Gluconic Acid, antioxidants and the list goes on. On average, an 8 ounce glass of kombucha has 2 grams of partially and therefore, predigested sugars.  Compare that to OJ which is about 27 grams of sugar in an 8 ounce glass.


I don’t love eating grass, but my cows love it, and they convert that grass into milk and meat for our good health.  Same idea.  I have experimented with other sweeteners and sugar works best. I have researched and read articles on both sides for diabetics.  There is no science on this of yet.  But there is NO sugar in vinegar, so let your kombucha sit on the counter for 2-3 days and then add to seltzer water.  Best flavor for you would be the Ginger Lime, as it is the lowest in sugar.

What about Caffeine?

If you are sensitive to caffeine, as I am, stick to either the brews with Hibiscus tea (no caffeine) or the White tea brews (very low caffeine).  From my research and reading, the fermentation process does lower the caffeine about 1/3.  So even the brews with black teas will be only about 10-25 mgs of caffeine.  But here is the great news!  First of all, it is natural not an added chemical.  Also in tea there is an amino acid in tea, L-Theanine that promotes serotonin production to promote relaxation, which may soften the caffeine effects.  YaY! AND the big boost of vitamin B in kombucha gives you energy without the nervous feeling.  I feel so clear headed and am very productive after my daily delicious glass of booch.

These seem to be the big questions at the markets when I meet you all.  Hoping this answers your questions.  If you have more, I would love to do my more research and answer.  So mail me at or go to the contact us link.

If you have testimonials, please share also! I will post them on the website.

Drink up for health!

The Kombucha Lady

information from articles read by Dr. Axe, Kombucha Kamp, Dr. Mercola, Donna Schwenk at and various healthy food writers.  check out What is Kombucha for more links.


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