Review: Revive Kombucha Ups Its Game with Refined Labels and Packaging
Covers Products: Campfire - Genmaicha Brew, The O.G. - Black Tea Brew, Solar - Yerba Mate Brew, Spring Fling, Tropic Wonder, Up Beat - Coffee Brew
When it comes to kombucha, it’s often a tale of two extremes. On one end of the spectrum are kombuchas that have a heavy vinegar flavor and parts of the scoby floating in the bottle. On the other end are smoother, crisper Kombuchas that have little more than a slight tang from the fermentation. While there’s certainly merit to both approaches, the latter has a higher quality and seems like something that has mainstream potential. And that’s exactly where Revive Kombucha stands.
From a taste and quality perspective, Revive is one of the few brands that we consider to be at the top of the category. The brand, which currently has a total of eight flavors, including seasonal offerings, doesn’t have any variety that we’d say needs work. Revive is able to brew tasty kombucha, regardless of the flavor combination or base, which can include tea, coffee, or even yerba mate. While each of the eight flavors has its own unique flavor profile, it’s consistency that really makes Revive shine: all of the flavors, regardless of what they are made with, have consistent levels of sweetness, carbonation, and kombucha flavor.
And while we’re fans of all of their flavors, here are our favorites:
The O.G. - The “Original Brew,” this is Revive’s flagship flavor and features raw lemon juice, vanilla extract, and almond extract. It’s unique tasting and one of our favorites across the entire kombucha category.
Solar - Made with a yerba mate kombucha culture as well as raw ginger, this variety’s strength is definitely in the notes of sweet and spice that hit your tongue at the finish.
Up Beat - This is a coffee-based kombucha (it doesn’t contain tea) and is definitely the most unique tasting of the bunch. From a taste perspective, it is, as you might guess, like iced coffee married with kombucha.
Campfire - Made with genmaicha (aka toasted rice or popcorn tea), this variety is all about tea and has no added flavorings (it is, however, sweetened with sugar, which is added as part of the fermentation process). It’s a great showcase of the toasted rice flavor of genmaicha, and has a slightly fermented note from the kombucha.
Packaging, which was previously either a swing top heavy glass bottle or a growler, was always the part of Revive that needed the most improvement. The new 11 oz. bottles, which are what we’re reviewing today, are a huge step forward for the brand. It’s a nice portion size (think 12 ounce can of soda, but just a hair smaller), probably just right for consumers who are new to kombucha. Plus, they’ve done a superb job of designing labels that are colorful and attractive, although somewhat kitschy. In the case of kombucha, this sort of works, with the category’s homespun origins, as well as for Revive, which got its start at farmers markets.
However, if there’s anything that can still be improved upon, it’s the prominence of the Revive logo on the label. Aside from on The O.G., which has the logo in a larger format, the logo is too small and gets lost in their colorful designs.Putting this all together and we feel as though Revive finally has something that it can take and scale on a national level. The flavors of their products can certainly hold their own with anything that’s currently out there, while the packaging makes it feel very attractive and inviting.