Founder Interview: Mikko Tapanila, Co-founder of Vortex Kombucha

Posted by Kombucha Summit Team on September 03, 2019 · 6 mins read

Hello Kombucha nation! This is Founder Interview number 12. Today, we are interviewing Mikko, a fellow Kombucha brewer from Finland. He is one of the founders of Vortex Kombucha. Enjoy the interview!

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Describe your product in one sentence and tell us about your brand.

First we were two guys with the desire to brew our own kombucha, then came the name “Vortex” and that led to the study of how water flows in nature (in vortices) and how that could be part of the process of brewing kombucha!

Vortex Logo
Vortex Kombucha
So we carefully start by filtering the water and then returning it to its natural state through vortexing and by other techniques. We wish to bring the complexicity of the organic teas and herbs to the spotlight in the final products. Our main brew is now the Pure Pu’er Kombucha. Pu´er tea is endlessly interesting and produces a fruity and complex flavor during fermentation. Experiments with other teas/herbs and combinations are continuously bubbling on, including one crafted with smoked tea!

What‘s your story and how did you get started?

AYATANA Kombucha
Founders of Vortex Kombucha

We got together with my friend Callum Ford (who has recently relocated himself back to Australia, cheers buddy!) a year ago to brew a 50 bottle batch of kombucha for an outdoor restaurant day. We sold out and started enthusiastically planning forward and brewing the next ones. The following year was about developing brewing methods and exploring new approaches that would be the most natural and suitable for kombucha scobies to do their work. We decided to use glass brewing vessels that are without sharp edges, and brew in shapes that come from nature, for example the shape of an egg. This allows the liquid to move naturally leaving no dead-zones where the liquid could become stagnant. Upon research we found that egg-shapes have been used for millenia, all the way back from the antique Greek times with their amphorae to modern day wineries with huge concrete or clay egg-shaped containers.

What‘s your current stage?

We´re selling our booch locally and plan to start selling in cafes and to distributors later this year. Working hard to make this a full-time job. Our booch has been well received among our customers and we´re very much looking forward to expanding the product range and availability!

Vortex Bottles
Vortex Kombucha Bottles

What excites you most about Kombucha and its future?

Kombucha is one among those “better options” to consume. We got all the popular fizzy drinks that actually contain just flavors, colors, sweeteners and forced carbonation. Or then you can go and get some hard ferments, like beer and wine. Kombucha and other “lighter” ferments, on the other hand, have real nutritious substance in them - there is life in those bottles and jars! We strongly believe that people want better and something more real and optimal for the body and mind than what´s typically found on the supermarket shelves.

What are your expectations in attending the Kombucha Summit?

Good to come and meet with other producers, get some tips on expanding production and cool to see some breweries in Berlin, too! Looking forward to sharing ideas and making new contacts, sniffing out the overall atmosphere around ferments in the EU region, and tasting a good variety of kombuchas, of course! :)

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Thanks, Mikko for the interview! You keep reading — we keep posting more interviews from the exciting world of Kombucha!

For those of you interested in participating in October: You can purchase tickets here and in case you have any questions, comments or suggestions, ping us any time at or on Instagram.

Founder Interview Disclaimer

The views, opinions and positions expressed within our Founder Interview Series are those of the interviewee alone and do not represent those of Kombucha Summit (Good Culture Kombucha Limited). The accuracy, completeness and validity of any statements made within this article are not guaranteed. We accept no liability for any errors, omissions or representations. The copyright of this content belongs to the author and any liability with regards to infringement of intellectual property rights remains with them.