All photos by Vivian Kim
In the space that formerly housed Ballast Point: Scripps Ranch, hard kombucha maker JuneShine will host grand opening celebrations tomorrow from 2-9 p.m. at 10051 Old Grove Road.
JuneShine concocts their beverages using a green tea base fermented with honey. (So, technically, they’re producing a drink called “jun” while its cousin kombucha generally incorporates black tea and cane sugar.) All of their flavors arrive at 6% ABV.
Fittingly, this month of June also marks the one-year anniversary of their brewery and tasting room launch in North Park (3052 El Cajon Boulevard). That facility will become a de facto research & development space, as chief brewing office Greg Peters continues dialing in their new brewing headquarters.
“We like to say we’re building the plane as we’re flying it,” said Peters during a tour of the brewery.
Peters, an alum of beer makers The Lost Abbey, Saint Archer, Maui, and Pizza Port, has helped assemble a team bringing experience from the likes of Modern Times, Mason Ale Works, Cutwater Spirits, Saint Archer, and even Coca-Cola, to scale up from JuneShine’s ten-barrel system in North Park to the 200-barrel behemoth in Scripps Ranch.
That growth has brought a litany of scientific and logistical challenges; for example, their Cucumber Mojito staple will soon be discontinued (at least in large batches) — “we just couldn’t source that amount of organic cucumber,” said Peters.
As part of the company’s stated commitment to sustainability, and the overarching goal “to brew an honest alcohol for a healthier planet,” JuneShine utilizes 100% organic ingredients, is working to remove as much plastic as possible from their supply chain, and joined the 1% for the Planet organization.
Later this summer, their health-focused kitchen Enclave will come online, bringing the added benefit of allowing JuneShine to serve “guest taps” of beer, mead, sake, and wine. (California law requires on-site food-making in order to sell alcoholic beverages that aren’t made in-house).
Currently, more than a dozen JuneShine varieties grace the 56 total taps, including Carrot Orange Turmeric, Chili Mango, Cyclops Strawberry, and Nopalito Kumquat, named for its Valley Center farm source. Also available are an organic blueberry tart kombucha from locals Bambucha, and nitro cold brew coffee from San Marcos’ The Steeping Giant.
Saturday’s event will feature JuneShine Passion, their anniversary brew with passionfruit and butterfly pea flower, alongside food trucks, live music, and small bites from the work-in-progress Enclave kitchen.