Starbucks Just Launched Kombucha Drinks That Look Ridiculously Refreshing


At this point, you've almost definitely heard of kombucha, a drink that has been super trendy in the health food world for a while now. The mixture of fermented tea is said to have health benefits that include improved digestion, less stress, and more energy. Once only relegated to health food shops, kombucha has grown in popularity so much that it's now available pretty much everywhere by a whole bunch of different brands. And starting Aug. 8, Starbucks' Evolution Fresh line is selling a variety of flavors of kombucha. Before you buy one to test out, however, you might be wondering exactly what Starbucks' Evolution Fresh Kombucha is.

First, the basics: kombucha is a tea-based drink that has been around for thousands of years — actually, it dates back to ancient Chinese civilizations, when it was used as a remedy for things like arthritis and even cancer. So it's not just a brand new trend, even if it seems that way. The drink is a combination of tea, sugar, and active starter culture of bacteria and yeast. This culture is known as the "mother culture" (or just, sort of ominously, "the mother"), and it's combined with black or green tea for a fermentation process while bacteria grows.

This might sound horrifying, but don't freak out: this is the good kind of bacteria, the kind some doctors say can improve gut health and ward off the bad bacteria that can actually make you sick. This good bacteria is known as probiotics, and some experts believe it can do everything from alleviate issues associated with irritable bowel syndrome and food allergies to fight colds and lower cholesterol.

Because of the fermentation process, kombucha tends to have a sour, vinegar-like taste to it that many find off-putting. This is why companies often give it a sweet flavor with the addition of fruits and spices. That's exactly what Starbucks' Evolution Fresh line did: there are six different flavors of their kombucha, and all of them sound pretty great.

Which brings us back to the main point: what are the new Evolution Fresh Organic Kombucha drinks? This bottled kombucha is artisanal tea that is fermented and paired with cold-pressed Evolution Fresh juices. It's certified USDA Organic, non-GMO, gluten-free, and kosher, and the six different flavors sound pretty great.

Ginger Greens


This feel-good mix is made of Yerba Maté tea, Evolution Fresh's signature cold-pressed leafy greens, lemon, and ginger. It has a slight zing to it.

Ginger Lemon Honeycrisp


Made of Congou black tea, cold-pressed honeycrisp apple, lemon, and ginger, this invigorating drink has a bit of a kick to it.

Mango Pineapple


This sweet drink is made with Congou black tea and cold-pressed oranges, mangoes, and pineapples.

Spicy Greens


If you prefer something more spicy than sweet, opt for this flavor. Made with green tea, matcha, cold-pressed greens, pineapple, and jalapeño, it has a little heat and a lot of flavor.

Pink Grapefruit


This is a mix of Pu'erh black tea and cold-pressed pink grapefruit, which makes it citrusy and sweet.

Turmeric Pineapple Coconut


This kombucha mixes Yerba Maté tea with turmeric and cold-pressed pineapple. It's sweet with a little bit of zing.

The drinks will be available starting August 8th in natural and grocery retailers in select cities across the United States including Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, Seattle, and New York City.