What’s better than enjoying Wild Tonic jun kombucha? A great story to go along with it!  This is the Wild Tonic Origin Story !

The road to creating Wild Tonic has been a very unique journey — it involves art, bees, and fermenting. It’s definitely a company story unlike any other! 

Curious to learn the backstory behind the buzziest beverages around? Go ahead, open up a bottle or can of your favorite flavor and keep reading to learn Wild Tonic’s origin story. 

Seeds of Creativity: Wild Tonic’s Origin Story

Wild Tonic founder Holly Lyman was raised to be creative. 

In an interview in Food & Beverage, Holly shares how she used to spend summers at her grandmother’s 40-acre homestead in North Pole, Alaska. 

Her grandmother had a makeshift art studio/greenhouse that Holly recalls as being like “an altered reality,” featuring earthiness and art all in a single space. 

In this creative space, Holly learned about various artistic disciplines, including painting, planting, and fermenting. 

In retrospect, these experiences helped shape Holly’s world view and artistic vision. These summers in Alaska were pivotal in guiding her toward her later paths of creating encaustic painting and fermenting.  

National Kombucha Day

Visual Art to Flavor Art 

With summers like that, is it really any surprise that Holly was drawn to creative fields?

As noted above, Holly is well-versed in encaustic art — a unique and very old form of creating fine art using beeswax.

But her natural curiosity and creativity have led her to pursue other artistic avenues — including fermenting.

As she shared in an interview on this blog, “I began studying all of the writings of Sandor Katz (note: Katz is an American food writer/educator who is known for his focus on food fermentation), who inspired me to begin fermenting.”

She talks about how she later met up with Katz at his Tennessee home and fermenting foundation, and recalls sharing an early version of her Wild Tonic jun kombucha recipe. 

Holly shares that Katz told her “There are no rules in fermenting” — the idea was freeing. Holly describes how she “absolutely fell in love with the idea that it was a creative journey, much like art.” 

She began to experiment, and shares “I simply stumbled across the jun culture when making all different types of ferments from water kefir to ginger beer and found that the jun made the most satisfying ferment of them all!”

It was around this time that Holly visited Sedona, Arizona on vacation. In an interview, she recalls that “a force greater than myself drew me to the red rocks of Sedona.” When she left, she knew she’d be back soon. She continues, “Several months later, we had found a new home [in Sedona] and started the Wild Tonic brewery.” 

Wild Tonic: Not Your Average Kombucha 

If you’ve only tried traditional kombucha, you’ll likely be surprised (in a good way!) by the flavor of Wild Tonic jun kombucha.

Jun kombucha is a unique type of fermented beverage that’s made with honey, tea, and the SCOBY. That’s different from traditional kombucha, which relies on cane sugar to kick-start the fermentation process.

This may be a small difference, but it yields a distinctly different finished product. Jun kombucha has a lightly sweet, mellow flavor that is significantly smoother than traditional kombucha. 

Because of its different fermentation process, jun kombucha also boasts different potential health benefits than traditional kombucha. Curious to learn more? Check out this post

Bringing Wild Tonic to the Masses

In a few short years, Wild Tonic has established itself as an innovator and leader in the beverage industry. We now have accounts throughout the nation, and we recently launched an 

online delivery service

But the company’s goals have remained consistent: create products that taste great, offer great potential health benefits, and be respectful of the earth while producing them. 

As Holly put it in an interview, “When a national brand embraces sourcing products that treat the earth in a respectful way by supporting organic growers it sets an example for future generations to follow. The earth needs more people who realize the importance of that.”

Commitment to the Environment

Wild Tonic is extremely committed to the environment. 

Our company’s state-of-the-art facilities were designed to minimize waste and utilize energy efficiently. It’s very important to us to be efficient with resources! 

We’re also committed to giving back to the bee population that gives us so much and provides the honey that makes Wild Tonic taste so great! 

We also make efforts to give back to the community and support the bee population. Check out this post to learn more. 

Feeling Thirsty?

Did reading the tale of Wild Tonic help work up a thirst for our jun kombucha?

Find a retailer near you to load up on bottles or cans, or have jun kombucha shipped to your door — our products are now available for nationwide delivery

Stay in touch: 

Instagram: @drinkwildtonic

Facebook: Wild Tonic

Twitter: @DrinkWildTonic 

What do you love best about the Wild Tonic origin story?