There is a boozy new take on kombucha. Naughty Booch – a fizzy mix of kombucha and apple cider – is made in Melbourne and it launched in bottle shops around the country last week.
It’s by the Tailored Beverage Company, which was founded by friends Alexander Haeusler and Dylan Alexander, and also produces Rosé in a can and Negronis, Margaritas and Espresso Martinis in jars.
“We knew that alcohol and kombucha would complement each other, but the kind of alcohol was important, too,” says Alexander. “Eventually we figured a cider would fit better with it than just a straight gin or vodka.”
Kombucha already has a small amount of alcohol in it, produced naturally during the fermentation process, but combining it with cider makes it that little bit more potent. A can of Naughty Booch has an ABV (alcohol by volume) of 4.6 (which is the same as a can of Young Henrys Cloudy Cider) compared with regular kombucha, which has an ABV of around 0.5.
“Kombucha is going from strength to strength around the world,” says Haeusler. “We wanted to work with the drink, but make something that’s more than just a regular kombucha.”
Both cider and kombucha are fizzy and refreshing, which Alexander says is the effect they’re going for with Naughty Booch. Choose from two flavours: ginger and lemon, which is light and crisp, and a fruity, slightly sweeter mix of watermelon, cucumber and lime. A third flavour, apple and berry, will hit shelves soon. Each drink comes in 330-millilitre tinnies that clock in at 1.2 standard drinks a pop.
Neither flavour is overly sweet, in part because kombucha itself doesn’t tend to be too sugary, but also because Naughty Booch is made using only naturally occurring sugars, although some of those sugars come from the addition of fruit juices and concentrates.
“The big thing for us is the lack of sugar,” says Alexander. “It was important for us to at least keep it lighter: low sugar, no preservatives, but still a tasty cider.”
Naughty Booch is available in bottle shops across Australia.