How to brew homemade kombucha during any season, that's the question, here' s the answer… so seasons change, so Kombucha brewing has to change. Usually it makes sense when the winter comes the temperature is lower, now just so you guys know if you don't know already, Kombucha likes to be fermented in a temperature anywhere from 72 degrees Fahrenheit to 82 degrees Fahrenheit, some people can go up, I would say, as high as 85 degrees Fahrenheit, I found, even though the research shows 85 degrees is great, I found that if it's too high, it will ferment too fast and what happens is that the acetic acid level gets introduced, the levels get too high that it turns into that vinegary taste, not that chilled out, apple cidery, still with the bite, but not the vinegar taste.
Homemade Kombucha Tea Temps
A general rule of thumb is the lower the temperature, the longer it takes to ferment, and the more mellowed the flavor will be. I like the bite of homemade Kombucha so for me, a brewing temperature of about 75-78 degrees works well, and brewing time really varies.
Well because there's other factors, it's insane, this is a living thing we're talking about. So not only does with the season change, the temperature changes, but other things change as well, primarily the relationship between the yeast and the bacteria.
- You'll find that during the colder months, yeasts can survive no problem, but the bacteria might be a little lower, so we've done other videos on how to balance the yeast and bacteria, so if you're bacteria is low, you want to raise your bacteria. There are ways and techniques to do it, I encourage you to check out our other resources on how to do that.
- A good rule of thumb though, that during the colder months just know that it might take a little longer to get that fermentation, the PH level to drop, and you might need to incorporate a heating source.
- We have our own personal Kombucha heating mats that we recommend during the colder months and we also show you, again something that we like to do is not just provide a product, but provide resources on how to use that product the best way possible. We also have some free videos and goodies on how to really make those heating mats work for you.
Something that you should not do is think well, if Kombucha needs to be warm during the winter, let me put it in my oven, and I know it sounds crazy, but it didn't sound crazy when I first started brewing, that actually would make sense to me right? Something warm, something dark, put it in the oven. Oven doesn't work for two reasons, the obvious reason would be Kombucha does not like smoke and things like that, so no smoking cigarettes around Kombucha, and your oven, even if you're cleaning it everyday, is probably a little gross in there. It also doesn't like to be moved around all the time, which means, unless you're only microwaving your food or eating take out, you're going to have to continuously bring your brew out of your oven, but the third reason, which I had not seen online yet, is that the pilot light in your oven, counter intuitive because you think well, the pilot light would add warmth to my culture, is actually burning off oxygen, right? Your oven is, and usually an oven is closed, so what that oven is doing is suffocating your Kombucha during the aerobic process of the fermentation.
Homemade Kombucha Dangers Avoided
So during the winter months, really the best solution is those heating mats, cost effective by far, because it's a lot easier to warm up your Kombucha brewer then your entire apartment or house or castle, where ever you choose to reside. Another quick tip would be to, where ever you have your brewer, your Kombucha vessel, is to raise it somewhere maybe, people go back and forth, a refrigerator, because the refrigerator vibrates, I found as long as your culture is already thick enough, it's fine to put on top of your fridge, again experiment. Another great place is a dresser or a closet that's not completely closed, so it still has that air ventilation, why?
Well heat, and this is just physics, I'm not like this crazy wizard or anything, but that would be cool if I was a crazy wizard, heat rises right? So if you have your Kombucha in an elevated space in your home, the temperature, and test this yourself, test your temperature in a higher part of your house and test it lower.
Heat rises, so naturally your Kombucha will be warmer in an elevated area.
Hopefully that answers your question, how to brew homemade Kombucha during any season.
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About Kombucha Dave
Happy go lucky guy who most recently (past 6 years or so), has been enjoying his time teaching people how to make kombucha, traveling, and playing dodgeball. If you are asking yourself what is kombucha? Fear not, as it is one of the most common questions I receive on a daily basis... that and why are you always smiling? :) Connect with me on Google+