Our vegetable kvass, to say the least, has become the heart of our endeavors here at Zukay. I fondly refer to them as “The World’s Healthiest Beverages”, and I’m not kidding. Not even a bit (with, of course, the caveat that clean, pure water is one of the most necessary elements of life). While I occasionally get the wry glance of “that’s a big claim” from people not in the know, I fall back on this – we take raw, organic vegetables (local whenever possible) and naturally lacto-ferment them with wild cultures. The fermentation is magical – changing sugars into lactic acid to preserve the entire beverage raw with all the nutrients intact, so there’s NO glycemic index – and turns the drinks into probiotics. It’s not infrequent for me to revel in the awesomeness of the process. We sure as heck didn’t invent it, but our goal at Zukay has always been to make these insanely healthy products approachable to EVERYONE. Because who doesn’t need raw, probiotic, veggie nutrition with no sugar?
But there’s always been the “but, the taste requires a lot of getting used to”. I guess so. Not for me, and not for a lot of people, but I’ve always been on the fringe of what’s acceptable. I’m the guy who gobbles down capers and eats anchovies and sardines by the tin, and sweet has never, ever been an important part of my palate. I like tart, strong things, and our kvasses are, by and large, tart, strong things. We’ve done our best to make them palatable to as many people as possible (which has meant that we’ve occasionally made enemies with people who want them as tart and strong as possible), but at the end of the day there’s this – I ferment raw, organic vegetables and juice them. There’s just no way of getting around that. I’m proud of the taste and purity of our products, but they’re never going to taste like Coke.
So, it was a challenge we put upon ourselves a few years ago to develop much more mainstream tasting kvasses, with the promise that whatever our solution was, our ingredients would only contain raw, organic plants and would only be preserved through the same lacto-fermentation means our current vegetable kvasses are made by. It hasn’t been easy – lacto-fermentation and our society’s taste buds don’t meet eye to eye. But by combining the best raw, organic fruit and vegetable mixes together, we think we’ve made a pretty impressive quantum leap – raw, fruity, ridiculously low sugar, and probiotic drinks with a nice chunk of vegetable nutrition. While they’re not super sweet, they’re much more “drinkable” and “thirst-quenching” than our beloved veggie kvasses.
So, Scott, are you backing away from the veggie kvasses? Heck no. Not in any way whatsoever. If you’re looking for the strongest, most functional vegetable nutritional punch, the veggie kvasses are still the way to go. Nothing’s changed there (even though the bottles will very soon). Want the most greens? Drink Super Green. Want the ultimate raw beet nutrition? Drink Beet or Beet Ginger. Want an awesome immune booster? Drink Super Root.
But I will admit, when I’m thirsty, the Green Ginger Brew and the Melon Loves Mint are my new go to’s. I find new ways to incorporate them in my diet, and, well, I just love them. They’re like a new child – the parents will always find a way to open their hearts to the new arrival without losing any love for the ones whom they have loved since day one. So, enjoy, and revel in the fact that in this world of awfully unhealthy beverage and food choices that surround us in virtually every venue we find ourselves in, there’s a new, unique, and awesome option that makes it just a little easier to satisfy yourself and truly make your body healthy.
To your health!