Profile: Twisted Kombucha, London, England
Lou Dillon founded Twisted Kombucha following a career as a nutritionist in the UK’s National Health Service (NHS) and completing her MSc at London Metropolitan University in microbiology. She carried out an 18-month program of microbiological, biochemical, and analytical testing of kombucha. She analyzed the caffeine content of kombucha determined by different ratios of black and green teas. She concluded:
The caffeine content in Kombucha ranged between 0.208 to 0.571mg/ml. The study revealed the need for manufacturers of commercial Kombucha to establish routine testing and quality control analysis of caffeine in the beverage to comply with EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) labelling regulations.— Application of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) to the analysis and determination of caffeine in home brewed and commercial variants of Kombucha.
It is evident that the biochemistry and microbiological composition of kombucha is varying and complex; and still more research is required to fully understand fermentation processes and dynamics. It varies with environmental and geographical differences, fermentation vessels, substrate type and concentration,— Evaluation of chemical and microbiological characteristics of kombucha tea produced during an extended fermentation.
incubation temperature and time.
In September 2019, Lou left the NHS and bootstrapped her company — just before the COVID-19 pandemic hit. As a one-woman operation she does everything by hand and bottles 300 liters at a time. Last August she expanded into a new facility in Hertfordshire. Her product is now available in 40 locations across North and East London, including the prestigious Partridges in Sloan Square, Central London. She also sells online.
The move to the new production facility involved adjusting to the new environment until the kombucha was back to the quality she requires.
She offers five standard flavors created with infusions of fruits, botanicals, and herbs as well as additional seasonal flavors.
- Cucumber, Mint, and Lime
- Strawberry, Hibiscus, and Ginger
- Butterfly Pea Flower
- Hibiscus and Lavender
- Ginger, Pineapple and Cascade Hops
Listen to Lou tell the story of Twisted Kombucha in her own words. [The telephone recording quality improves after the first couple of minutes.]