Bringing a non-alcoholic fermented beverage option to 30th Street's craft beer corridor is JinBuCha, a local kombucha company that's planning to sell and serve its slightly sparkling drinks out of a new North Park storefront.
Founder Jing Chen's cold brew fermented green tea comes in original and ginger flavors plus seasonal varieties made with fruit sourced from local farmer's markets or from her own backyard farm; it's currently on tap at Cafe 21 restaurants and flot spa in in Little Italy but Chen hopes to expand her distribution to include more eateries and breweries.
She may land at the North Park and Hillcrest farmer's markets this month before soft opening the brick-and-mortar tasting room by mid-October in time for the Taste of North Park. Chen will soon launch a crowdfunding campaign to help seed a remodel of the space, which will need a cold box with six to eight taps, a new bar and front patios. At least three JinBuCha probiotic kombuchas other non-alcoholic craft drinks will be on tap; eventually, she also plans to serve beer and wine. Chen intends to rent the adjacent kitchen to other local food artisans, from bakers to chocolatiers, who will also be able to sell their products in the marketplace/tasting room, which will offer refillable containers of kombucha.
Chen, whose family is from southeastern China, grew up in her family's restaurants; by Spring 2016, she's aiming to turn the space into a full-blown eatery which would serve authentic Chinese food made with local meat, seafood and produce.