The Dish: A New Leaf

Local kombucha is a catalyst for health.

Order a glass of kombucha out in L.A., and you’ll get a knowing “Right on, dude.” Here, the likely response is a puzzled “Huh?” While kombucha has taken the West Coast by storm, in Boston the benefits of this fermented tea haven’t provoked a tempest worthy of even a small teacup. That may change now that Greenfield-based Katalyst is brewing the stuff in Massachusetts—and getting the word out about kombucha’s healing powers. Made by adding a bacteria and yeast culture to sweetened tea, kombucha aids digestion and helps detoxify the liver. And this one’s pretty tasty—something not all kombuchas can claim. (The first one I tried actually made me gag.) Though Katalyst’s aroma is slightly vinegar-y, the flavor is iced tea. My favorite is the fiery Ginger Devotion, laced with organic Hawaiian ginger juice, but the Pure Essence, a blend of green and black teas, and the faintly floral Schizandraberry are also good, once you get used to them.

Katalyst Kombucha, $2.59 at Cambridge Naturals, 23 White St., Cambridge, 617-492-4452,,