How to Run Your Own SCOBY Hotel
Are you leaving for vacation and don’t know what to do with your SCOBYs? Do you have extra SCOBYs and don’t know where to put them? Don’t worry! We have the answer.
Introducing…the SCOBY hotel! You can house all of your SCOBYs in one container and keep them healthy and fresh until needed.
How Do I Start My Own SCOBY Hotel?
Choose a large, clean glass container.
Place as many SCOBYs as you like in the jar. More SCOBYs= larger jar.
Add enough starter tea and fresh sweetened tea to cover the SCOBY (as if you’re brewing kombucha regularly)
Cover jar with coffee filter, or cloth.
Place jar in room temperature with plenty of airflow.
Check back every 2-3 weeks to make sure there is enough liquid. Replenish with fresh tea when the tea gets low.
That’s it folks! Your SCOBYs will just hang out in the hotel until needed. Please note that the kombucha that is stored in the SCOBY hotel will be very potent and concentrated due to the numerous SCOBYs fermenting the brew.
How Do I Manage the SCOBY Hotel?
Thinning SCOBYs: When you have a SCOBY hotel, new SCOBYs will form. Over time, these SCOBYs will become thicker and oxygen will have a more difficult time reaching the bottom. Without oxygen, the SCOBYs could get hurt or die. Thinning SCOBY layers is necessary to allow each SCOBY to get enough oxygen.
Remove a top SCOBY from the jar.
Separate the layers of SCOBYs’ by hand. They should be easily pulled apart. The top layers are younger and are recommended to keep.
You can also use a knife sanitized with vinegar if preferred. Thin the SCOBY to no more than 1 in. width.
Discard any unwanted SCOBYs or excess yeast.
Discarding Excess Yeast: In order to keep SCOBYs healthy, there needs to be a balance between the good bacteria and yeast that make up the SCOBY. Although yeast is fundamental to the fermentation process, too much can be detrimental to the SCOBYs longevity. SCOBY hotel maintenance should be performed every 2-5 months.
Place thinned SCOBYs in a separate vessel. Cover with a lid to prevent contamination or exposure to airborne bacteria.
Filter liquid in the SCOBY hotel jar with a strainer and reserve in a separate container
Thoroughly clean the SCOBY hotel jar with hot water. Do NOT use bleach/chlorine.
Place thinned SCOBYs back in the jar. Add fresh sweet tea and filtered starter tea to the jar with a 1:1 ratio.
Excess filtered starter tea can be used to start another batch of kombucha!