Entrepreneur Mag Highlights Kombucha Biz

Leslie Crews, founder of Kombuchick, earned the attention of Entrepreneur Magazine this month. Based in Norfolk, Va., Kombuchick is a kombucha microbrewer.

WTN150126_KombuchickCrews came to the attention of the magazine through a speaking engagement with Old Dominion University. She’d been asked to give a talk through the President’s Lecture Series at the school, “From Bachelor’s to BEVolution: How Kombuchick Kicked Glass and Took Names.” She was invited to a dinner with Entrepreneur’s editor-in-chief Amy Cosper. Cosper was intrigued and connected with Crews through social media.

Crews sees big opportunities for kombucha, particularly with rising interest in the probiotics found in fermented foods. Kombuchick offers kombucha that is reminiscent of popular beers like stouts and Hefeweizens. Some of Kombuchick’s current offerings inclue Jasmine Light, Chai Stout, and Hibiscus Haze. All are prepared using a low-temp steeping method that maintains the integrity of the tea flavor and reduces potential bitterness. (A 64 ounce growler sells online for $29.99 and a 12 bottle case is $39.99.) She currently produces 1,200 bottles monthly but would like to grow to 5,000.

At Five Points Farm Market in Norfolk, Crews operates Kombuchick Bar where she sells a kombucha cider tea on tap and an array of other draft options which rotate daily. The bar is open Thursday through Sunday. They also offer non-alcoholic drink bars for private functions and sell bottled kombucha through specialty markets, organic grocery stores and other venues.

The company has now launched a Kickstarter campaign, “Kombuchick BEVolution: The Kombucha Mocktail Bar Project,” to create a late night kombucha taphouse and mocktail lounge.

SOURCE: The Virginian-Pilot and Entrepreneur Magazine