Brands launch hard kombucha beverages

Cassandra Daily has recently profiled the proliferation of specialty beverages and, specifically, brands spiking beloved drinks. Kombucha, a fermented, fizzy tea that is forecasted to grow into a booming $5.45 billion industry by 2025, is no exception to this trend. Now, the following brands are debuting hard kombucha beverages, offering young people a new, delicious-yet-functional, and better-for-you alcoholic choice.


JuneShine Kombucha is on a mission to develop “honest alcohol for a healthier planet.” The brand’s boozy kombucha is crafted with green tea and honey instead of the standard black tea and cane sugar used in most other kombuchas to offer a better-for you and better-for-the-planet alcoholic beverage that contains probiotics, antioxidants, and 6% ABV. JuneShine’s unique kombucha base creates a canvas for the brand to experiment with bold flavors including Blood Orange Mint and Midnight Painkiller (which contains activated charcoal). While the brand prioritizes building up a local community of San Diego-based fans, JuneShine has partnered with Whole Foods to expand its distribution nationally.


KYLA is a new hard kombucha brand that aims to literally put the “culture” back in “party culture.” Each of KYLA’s slim, 12-ounce cans contains 4.5% ABV and two grams of sugar or less, which makes KYLA perfect for imbibing at brunch, the beach, or the bar. KYLA currently sells its four flavors—Pink Grapefruit, Ginger Tangerine, Hibiscus Lime, and Berry Ginger—in 6,000 retailers across the U.S. With the insight that modern youth (and Millennials specifically) prioritize wellness and prize optimizing health benefits from the food and beverages they consume, KYLA hopes its probiotic, alcoholic elixir will win the hearts of this health-conscious cohort.


While many traditional kombucha brands struggle to keep their kombucha’s alcohol level under the legal limit (which is 0.5% ABV), Flying Embers has the freedom to elongate the fermentation process, increasing the alcohol content and strengthening the flavor of its hard kombucha. Flying Embers is brewed with black tea and adaptogenic botanical roots (a mix of ginger, turmeric, ashwagandha, and astragalus), to maximize the tea’s flavor as well as its live probiotic content. Flying Embers contains 4.5% ABV, comes in Ginger & Oak, Ancient Berry, and Lemon Orchard flavors, and is currently sold in California, the Pacific Northwest, and New York.