Nella Fusco and Noah Hebbe, Awaken Kombucha, Vero Beach, FL USA
Q: When did you first discover kombucha?
Nella & Noah: Around 2008, a friend of ours was home-brewing and decided to come over with a big gallon container, a SCOBY and some culture. We honestly had little knowledge of kombucha until she brought us a kit. That’s when we decided to do some research, and drink up!
Q: Why did you start your own kombucha company?
Nella: Our story is unique! I have experienced stomach “issues” my entire life, and when I had met Noah, my diet had changed, and our home brewing friend saved my life. 2008 was when I started drinking GT’s kombucha, and it was the pinnacle of me feeling better. Most of my ailments had dissipated and the rest was under control, and I was blown away by the results. More kombucha companies came about, some we loved some we didn’t prefer. We were living in Floyd, VA, there was a company called Tha Best kombucha (who are now our friends) and we were in love with their kombucha, and we loved how much LOVE was brewed into their kombucha. They shared their passion with us and it invigorated my passion to share kombucha love to everyone and anyone that it could benefit. It added to my (our) quality of life and we wanted to spread the knowledge of probiotics and gut health. We moved down to Florida and the rest is history!
Noah: I always felt as though most of the kombucha companies on the market at the time were too acidic for my liking. I knew the benefits of kombucha and what it did for Nella, so meeting our friends in Floyd, VA, who’s kombucha I fell in love with instantly, I knew kombucha was meant to be our path in life. I fell in love with the craft and alchemy that kombucha is, and we had to share the love and benefits. We moved to Florida and we haven’t looked back since!
Q: What is your favorite flavor of kombucha?
Nella: GT’s kombucha was always my go to, but when I found out about Health-Ade’s Lemon Ginger, I fell in looove! I also love our Grapefruit Rosemary, the Grapefruit’s tartness and pucker, and the Rosemary’s pine-like flavor and freshness mixed in with the oak flavor from the oak barrels we brew in, it’s a magical experience!
Noah: I also love Health-Ade’s Lemon Ginger. I’m torn about our Hopped Up and Toasty Oak. Toasty Oak just has the essence of the oak barrels, the depth of flavor is indescribable, and the Hopped Up is our dry-hop blend, which the citrus undertones from the hops transforms the flavor of the Kombucha.
Q: What is your former/current other life or career?
Nella: I used to be a massage therapist, but there was something more that I was destined to do. We are 100% dedicated to the Kombucha, it is our passion and life (aside from our 2 year old!)
Noah: I’ve always had a passion for health and working out, so I was in school to become a personal trainer, until we found the Kombucha and now its 100% our passion.
Q: What is a saying that you live by?
Noah and Nella : “Make that change”