Meet the makers of Baltimore County's fermented tea

03/06/2017| Emily Witty

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Meet the makers of Baltimore County's fermented tea

03/06/2017 | Emily Witty

For breakfast, most Marylanders stick with the usual offerings: a bowl of cereal, a cup of tea, or a travel mug filled with coffee.

Few, however, think about starting their day with a tall glass of kombucha.

The folks at Mobtown Fermentation are looking to change that by defining kombucha for the average Joe.

A fermented tea, kombucha is loaded with vitamins and acids that strengthen the immune system, along with probiotics that bolster digestion. Mobtown Fermentation brews their kombucha with green tea, giving it a light taste that's easy to enjoy.

At their new space in Timonium, next to some of Maryland's staple businesses, like Baltimore Coffee & Tea Company and Jeppi Nut & Candy Company, Mobtown Fermentation founders Adam Bufano, Sergio Malarin, and Sid Sharma are bottling the ancient health drink by hand to be distributed to more than 100 locations throughout Maryland and D.C.

Brothers Adam and Sergio were raised in a home that valued homemade health foods like grainy breads and sauerkraut, with parents who used their kitchen much like a scientist experiments in a lab.

"Our refrigerator was like a house of horrors at times," Sergio said. "Our parents were always experimenting to see what worked."

In college, Adam quickly sparked a passion for developing different flavors of fermented teas that he would share with his peers during taste tests. As a result, the most popular flavors of Mobtown Fermentation's Wild Kombucha line were formed – mango peach, ginger grapefruit, elderberry, and apple spice.

With lots of practice, Adam was able to develop a brewing style that made his kombucha more desirable for the average customer.

"Our kombucha is more accessible than other brands on the market," Adam said. "It's light and bubbly without the vinegar taste that our competitors have and we only sweeten it with natural fruit juices."

Once Adam perfected his unique-style of kombucha, his brother Sergio brought in his marketing and business skills from the University of Maryland, College Park to launch their product. They soon welcomed their friend Sid into the fold.

"Baltimore has the quickest access to major cities within a two-hour drive," said Sergio. "Many west coast markets are saturated with kombucha products. Baltimore has a demand for this product and it's where our passion for kombucha brewing began."

In fact, demand is so high that Mobtown Fermentation sold out during a recent visit. It takes two weeks from start to finish to brew one batch of Wild Kombucha and the guys have already begun setting up larger fermentation tanks to meet the demand of their many customers like Whole Foods, Charmingtons, and Yoga Works.

"We want this product to be accessible to anyone looking for something different to drink that tastes good and is good for you," Adam said. "From the classic glass bottle to the friendly flavor, this is a kombucha anyone will love."

For more information about Mobtown Fermentation, visit

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