Intrigued by kombucha’s health benefits yet leery of its tart reputation? Look no further than Seek North, a certified-organic producer of the sweet-and-sour fermented tea.
Julian Lesser and Philippe Trinh, creators of Seek North, followed their instincts from NYC to Kingston, wanting the balance of a more nature-driven life. After Lesser’s debilitating Lyme disease diagnosis, the life partners turned to balancing their diets as a way to combat the disease. Part of their new diet were fermented beverages, like kombucha, which, according to advocates, helps mitigate harsh antibiotics that strip the gut of good bacteria.
Initially, Lesser wasn’t impressed with the tea on the market. “It tasted like medicine,” he says. Viewing that declaration as a challenge, Trinh was determined to create something even Lesser would deem delicious. A love of all things fermented, plus a penchant for culinary alchemy, drove him into their Kingston kitchen, where he concocted jars of floating, pancake-shaped SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast).
“I started dabbling with different herbs and spices,” says Trinh. Seek North Kombucha was born in 2017.
In 2018, Seek North had 12 flavors on tap at Dean & DeLuca stores throughout NYC. Eventually, the three most popular — Seek Harmony (hibiscus and ginger), Seek Immunity (elderflower and pineapple), and Seek Clarity (blueberry, pomegranate, and lemon) — were bottled, and Trinh and Lesser set out on their own, cold-calling favorite stores with a similar ethos (like Greens Natural Foods in Scarsdale, June & Ho in Rye, and Apiary in Larchmont). The effervescent elixir can now be found in 300 New York stores and growing.
“We’re developing a fourth flavor, which is really beautiful and really tasty,” says Lesser. Seek Vitality, a teal-like blue, will be made from green tea, white grape juice, blue spirulina, and holy basil.
It’s raw, organic, probiotic, and darn tasty.