ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — When the Brighton Whole Foods opens on April 12, there will be at least one local business with goods for sale there: Katboocha.
Katboocha has been open since 2018 and has been open in its current space on Railroad Street in Rochester since January, 2021. It’s down the road from the Public Market, and across fro Rohrbach Brewing.
Owner Katarina Eddy says she started brewing kombucha in her kitchen, like many other kombucha brewers.
“It was really an experiment, I was not anticipating this to become my full-time job, and to have it pretty much take over my life,” he said.
But what is kombucha, anyway?
“(It’s) is essentially a fermented tea drink,” she said. Part of this brewing process is something called a SCOBY. “(Which is) an acronym is for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast, and it’s essentially the kombucha culture.”
That SCOBY, which resembles a gelatinous puck or large membrane, provides gut-healthy bacteria, to go along with the nutrients from the tea.
Kombucha has been growing in popularity for those health benefits, and as a substitute for soda, beer, and more. Katboocha sells “the booch” with flavors from vanilla bergamot to grapefruit lavender, and experiments frequently at the bar.
“We have twelve different taps, and we’re always doing different flavors,”she said.
But at Whole Foods — at the main bar and at Lori’s Natural Foods — cans are on the menu. Eddy says this has been *brewing* for years:
“I got recommended to one of the people who was starting the Rochester store about four years ago,” she said. “I didn’t think that I could have facilitated an account like whole foods years ago, it’s kind of perfect timing for me.”
She’s bought the space next door, so she can store all the drinks that will be on display at Whole Foods. The space is not open to the public, but will be done and ready to go soon.