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Old 09-16-2009, 11:03 AM   #1291
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The last few months have had some degree of (excessive) excitement. I borked my shoulder (gee, physical therapy is so much fun) and there was a period where it got hot enough (along with the fact that my roommate never installed any of the window screens this year, so the house was always closed up) such that I had computers shutting down from overheating.

Early on in this period when bottling day came we only had 3 bottles available. An extra pint went into a glass jar and it was covered with a cloth rather than sealed. Some time thereafter we made two discoveries. Our production jar had spawned mold. Our stray pint had spawned a new scoby.

So the main jar was cleaned and aired out, and cleaned some more. We decided we were ready to re-start. But there is still the problem of those full bottles... We'll open one and see what we've got...

There was a loud bang.

Please note that the bottle did not gush, spew, or overflow. Instead a more apt word might be "detonated" as the contents of the pint bottle instantaneously expanded to 4 times their original volume. 3/4ths of the bottle was abruptly distributed about the kitchen. A good portion on the ceiling, some on the walls over 6 feet away.

After determining that frogfarm was not injured, the hilarity of the situation presented itself, especially the part about getting another baby scoby in the face.

The taste of the remaining half cup or so of liquid was very strong of vinegar, but not undrinkable. It did not have much fizz having blown itself out. The next bottle was placed in the fridge for 2 days (yes, the first bottle had been opened warm) and then it was taken outside. Although near as loud upon opening, there was only a small amount of foam-over, and we kept most of the liquid. Still strong of vinegar flavor, this ended up retaining some of its fizz.

On Monday we bottled two new pints from our freshly home-grown scoby.

Earlier in the month I had gotten a bottle of Reed's Extra Ginger brew and was perhaps halfway through it before reading the label. Imagine my shock when I read that it had 145 calories (a serving of Coke has 100 calories), but at least it its favor it is *not* HFCS. Reading further I came to the line that said "26 grams of ginger per bottle".

Monday I am going to the store and get at least 4 ounces of ginger...
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Old 09-16-2009, 11:30 AM   #1292
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Faia - an explosion - sheesh, there's an experience I hope I never have. I am glad that no one was hurt (well, except their pride - nothing like scoby on ones face to make them feel a bit foolish) Were they glass or plastic bottles?

I bottle in glass and have not had a problem - I don't always tighten the cap all the way - which causes a problem when I go to shake (not vigorously) them cause they leak, but at least the pressure is not building up. Despite the lose caps, I still get carbonation.
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Old 09-16-2009, 11:49 AM   #1293
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The other day my friend was in town and she had tried kombucha previously - she lives in HI and from what I gather, her experience with Kombucha was of the extreme vinegary variety. So on our way home from shopping one day, we stopped at whole foods to get some Synergy. I think this go around was a much better and more tasy experience.

So we are in line and we are kind of deep in conversation about kombucha making and the cashier makes some comment - I think, about a flavor she likes and I said, I make my own and she says she does too! And I am like, really?! So we got in a brief discussion about brewing - didn't want to hold the line up too much. She says when she first moved in with her room-mates she was a bit scared what they might think cause of what it looks like - "the tenticles, you know" and I am all like yeah, I don't let anyone see it except family - don't want to gross anyone out, but I was taking my friend back home to show her my brewing station. I am not sure, if after that, she decided to start her own brewing when she got back to HI.

Fun to meet a fellow brewer in person..
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Old 09-16-2009, 11:52 AM   #1294
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Faia - an explosion - sheesh, there's an experience I hope I never have. I am glad that no one was hurt (well, except their pride - nothing like scoby on ones face to make them feel a bit foolish) Were they glass or plastic bottles?

I bottle in glass and have not had a problem - I don't always tighten the cap all the way - which causes a problem when I go to shake (not vigorously) them cause they leak, but at least the pressure is not building up. Despite the lose caps, I still get carbonation.
Glass pint E-Z-Cap bottles. They have sort of a wire lever assembly that holds them sealed. Unlike screw caps they are virtually impossible to open slowly. Nothing broke, but the mess was rather spectacular.
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Old 09-27-2009, 10:46 AM   #1295
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I have TONs of babies, and would be happy to mail some out (plus some extremely strong starter tea). Sorry that happened Pepperette!
Hey Ang, I have promised Mark a scoby....though if you have extras, can you accomodate him?
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Old 09-27-2009, 10:09 PM   #1296
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Hi Fawn - I do have extras and would be happy to send one out. Mark, please feel free to PM me if you want one.
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Old 10-06-2009, 02:22 AM   #1297
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The bottles with about an ounce of ginger (each) have come ready. The first one opened without any problem, the next two had severe foam-overs, although not as bad as the "detonation" of the month-plus bottle (opened warm). Still not as much ginger flavor as I would like. Any ideas?
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Old 10-06-2009, 09:09 AM   #1298
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The bottles with about an ounce of ginger (each) have come ready. The first one opened without any problem, the next two had severe foam-overs, although not as bad as the "detonation" of the month-plus bottle (opened warm). Still not as much ginger flavor as I would like. Any ideas?
I haven't had the strength to do much lately, so don't have any personal experience suggestions, but what I would like to do would be to ferment ginger (creating beneficial lactobacilli) I don't know if this will create flavor also, but just for the health benefits would be worthy.

The Culture: make from scratch. Dice fresh ginger root into tiny cubes - put a tablespoon of it into a mason jar 3/4 full of water, along with 2 teaspoons white sugar. Every day for a week, Add another 2 teaspoons each sugar and ginger at which time it should become bubbly with a pleasant odor. If it gets moldy, dump it and start over.

I know several of us had problems with batches going from flavorful to watery & creating more foam than carbonation. I wonder if maybe (with the heat) the batches become yeast dominant (versus bacteria dominant) & affect the taste. I ended up pouring off the bottom brown yeasties from the batch, but the heat had killed my scobys by this point, so my experience is very limited.

I got Angie's scoby (thank you, thank you, thanks again hun) but haven't had the strength to cook (or make tea) & have been living off canned fish, chia seeds & almonds for the past month. Hopefully the addition of iodine (which I highly suggest all to research) will help sooner than later.

Hope all my fellow brewers are doing well!!
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Old 10-06-2009, 09:40 AM   #1299
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Old 10-25-2009, 02:02 PM   #1300
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It's official. My kitten doesn't like Kombucha!

He keeps crawling on the shelves trying to "investigate" what's going on there, even though I keep discouraging him. So I just poured some really strong fizzy cranberry on a dish and sat it in front of him. The face he made!
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Old 10-26-2009, 12:49 PM   #1301
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I just ran across this thread. I made the tea for several years, now it looks like people are adding things to get different flavors and talking about bottling it up. I was told you have to keep it in the fridge in something with cheese cloth over the top because after taking out the mushroom, the tea has to breath, which may be some of the problems you all are having with the mold and losing the carbonation. Ann
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Old 10-26-2009, 07:00 PM   #1302
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I just ran across this thread. I made the tea for several years, now it looks like people are adding things to get different flavors and talking about bottling it up. I was told you have to keep it in the fridge in something with cheese cloth over the top because after taking out the mushroom, the tea has to breath, which may be some of the problems you all are having with the mold and losing the carbonation. Ann
We primary ferment for 7 days, secondary ferment (in bottles, with flavor or not) for 7 more days, then refrigerate. Losing carbonation is not one of our problems...
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Old 10-28-2009, 04:15 PM   #1303
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Looks like changes have been made since I was drinking it. We fermented 7-1o days. I was told it was suppose to clean out every thing in the body, which I believed until I ended up in the hospital with 10 blood clots in my left leg. That's when I quit taking it, I figured it couldn't be doing that well for me to get blood clots, that was 8 yrs ago and I was quite surprised to see so many people are making it. Like clothes styles everything comes around again. Grin Ann
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Old 10-29-2009, 10:24 AM   #1304
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Ann, I'm sorry for your blood clots. What was the root cause? Certainly it wasn't the KT.
I ferment for 14 and second ferment for 5. No mold, good carbonation.

This winter I'll probably add KT to hot cups of Green Tea.
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Old 10-30-2009, 07:46 AM   #1305
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Thank you fawn, it was over 8 yrs ago, but when we were into the tea it was said it cleaned everything out of your system that wasn't good, so I figured if I could still get clots, it wasn't as good as we were told. And I stopped making it. They never said what the cause was, and no, it wouldn't have been caused by the tea. I had never gone into this site, just the low carb, but took a look when it mentioned Kombucha. Ann
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Old 11-01-2009, 09:43 AM   #1306
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I'm glad you are better.......it's a great source of organic beneficial acids that's for sure!

I'm having a heck of a time with fruit flies right now!
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Old 11-01-2009, 11:26 AM   #1307
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Ann, I wonder if the clots loosening wasn't part of the "cleansing process"? I've heard how people can have gall stones for years, but not know about them them they do a cleans and the stones get jiggled out of their resting place.

I'm glad they didn't harm you too badly, clots are kinda scary things. clogging up stuff.

~~~

My brew hasn't been right for a long time now, but it is still growing scobys. I think the yeast may have died cause I don't see any new yeast beneath the new scoby. I really should pour the whole batch out and start over. I don't know if the scobies in my hotel are pre- bad batch or post bad-batch. Since I took them out right before I started continuous, I don't know if they were weak and that's why continuous didn't work. I guess I won't know till I just start new, eh?
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Old 11-02-2009, 06:34 AM   #1308
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I guess anything is possible metga, but before the blod clots I developed a bleeding ulcer. Was not a good time in my life. Maybe you don't have enough cheese cloth over your jar and fruit flies might be dropping eggs through the cloth, causing problems. I've been googling KT looking for the recipe I used to use. May give it another try.
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Old 11-03-2009, 08:26 AM   #1309
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Ewwwww!!!!! Nope, no fruit flies in it! EEWWWWWWW!!! Ptttuuu Pttuuuu!

Cheese cloth is something I take seriously, I even bought kitchen flour sack clothes cause I didn't trust the loose weave of the cheesecloth, and heavy duty rubber bands.

But I made a lot of changes at once, so I might have upset the balance.

I'm sorry you went through so much.
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Old 11-03-2009, 10:45 AM   #1310
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Thank you metga, kind of a rough period in my life. But we all have them now and then. The mushrooms can be kind of touchy at times. Good luck figuring it out. Ann
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Old 11-07-2009, 11:00 AM   #1311
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I just got my first batch last night and it had a live scoby in it. My friend made it with green tea and grape juice. It was kind of sweet, and I don't want to drink sugary things for obvious reasons. I guess I should leave it out and let the scoby eat more sugar?
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Old 11-08-2009, 05:18 AM   #1312
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Hi Kombucha buddies! Been a long time since I posted. I kinda let up on production/consumption of my Kombucha, but I still have a Yerba mate brew going. My question is I have some that I bottled up long ago (at least a month ago) and it has been in the fridge. Is it still okay to drink? How do you know if it's bad?

Hope everyone is still happily brewing!
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Old 11-08-2009, 07:32 AM   #1313
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Hi Kombucha buddies! Been a long time since I posted. I kinda let up on production/consumption of my Kombucha, but I still have a Yerba mate brew going. My question is I have some that I bottled up long ago (at least a month ago) and it has been in the fridge. Is it still okay to drink? How do you know if it's bad?

Hope everyone is still happily brewing!
Drink it and see! If it tastes nasty, stop drinking it!

Hahaha just kidding, but no seriously, if you bottled it and and it has been chilled this whole time, I'm sure its okay. I jsut drank a bottle back from August. It wasn't great but it was okay kombucha.( that was the last bottle I filled before my batch went bad, so I didn't expect it to be stellar) It may have improved with age, like wine!
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Old 11-09-2009, 06:15 AM   #1314
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Drink it and see! If it tastes nasty, stop drinking it!

Hahaha just kidding, but no seriously, if you bottled it and and it has been chilled this whole time, I'm sure its okay. I jsut drank a bottle back from August. It wasn't great but it was okay kombucha.( that was the last bottle I filled before my batch went bad, so I didn't expect it to be stellar) It may have improved with age, like wine!
HMMM-that would be nice if it improved with age like wine...you might be on to something there! Anyway, thanks for your input!
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Old 11-09-2009, 12:28 PM   #1315
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Well I can tell you the one I made for BF with grape juice, does not! It ends up smelling and tasting like beer!
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Old 11-10-2009, 05:29 AM   #1316
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Oh no! Then DH would end up drinking all my KT!
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Old 11-10-2009, 07:14 AM   #1317
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Hahaha, well then I've got a whole jar he can have. I let it go to long and 3 weeks afterward BF says "I forgot to tell you to check the kombucha" and I was like what kombucha, oh the grape stuff, yeah I forgot about it why don't you make it yourself so you can keep track of it?, His response: " Ho humm hmmm hmmm hum hmmm hmm, uh hmm, Hey did yo hear the news about the health care reform?" or something like that.
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Old 11-11-2009, 08:21 AM   #1318
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Looks like changes have been made since I was drinking it. We fermented 7-1o days. I was told it was suppose to clean out every thing in the body, which I believed until I ended up in the hospital with 10 blood clots in my left leg. That's when I quit taking it, I figured it couldn't be doing that well for me to get blood clots, that was 8 yrs ago and I was quite surprised to see so many people are making it. Like clothes styles everything comes around again. Grin Ann
I found this forum by searching for "Left leg" and Kombucha. I have been getting numbness in my left leg from the latest batch I've made. I've been drinking the stuff over the past few days. Today is a bit worse, so I decided to see if there were any potential problems.

I had some fungus growing in the previous batch. I strained everything and washed the SCOBY in lemon juice before starting the next lot. I had lots of small white particles in the 'bucha before I strained it. I hadn't read about this being a problem.

This could be dehydration. I'm drinking water now.

What, if any, symptoms did you have before you ended up in hospital?
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Old 11-11-2009, 11:10 AM   #1319
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ARe you Kidding Me! Throw that out! Start over. Bad brew is not worth risking your health! One of us can send you another scoby, and tea and sugar are cheap.

I've never heard about washing a scoby that had gotten mold or bad fungus on it. I'd always been instructed to toss it and start over. there's no way to assure that you've gotten rid of whatever was growing on it, and you might be making yourself sick by incubating a harmful mold in your brew.

If you can buy commercial bottled kombucha then buy a bottle and grow a new scoby. I wouldn't drink any more of that batch or any bottled from it.

I eat and drink some questionable stuff, but I'm scared about what might be in your once contaminated brew.
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Old 11-16-2009, 09:12 AM   #1320
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Hi.I have a box of kombucha/green tea. Any recommendations on best way(add- ins)/best time to drink this?
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