Cary entrepreneurs make a splash with their Kombucha

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Two guys in Cary are brewing up something a little different.

A couple of Cary entrepreneurs are producing their version of Kombucha, a fermented tea with major health benefits.

They brew it, carbonate it, bottle it and deliver it to businesses all over the Triangle.

And after a year and a half in business, they just landed a major contract with Whole Foods for their brand, Tribucha.

Now investors from everywhere are calling.

Their Kombucha looks almost like liquid gold.

But this fresh drink is actually a sweet tea mixed with medicinal and culinary herbs.

Made from fermented tea and poured from kegs, this small manufacturing space in Raleigh has become a gold mine for Jon York and Adrian Larrea.

"We've got a cooler full of kegs," Larrea said. "Those kegs are all gone. Half the stuff in these fermentation tanks is sold before it's even done fermenting."

They start with organic sugar and brewed tea, then add some bacteria and yeast and let it ferment.

The caffeine and sugar come out in that process, and what's left is a probiotic drink they carbonate. That helps digestion and -- some claim -- gives you energy.

York is the brewmaster.

"When we were trying to develop our flavors, I wanted to make sure we stuck with a lot of medicinal herbs," York said. "Things that would make people healthy other than just the probiotics and the good acids that help your stomach."

Larrea noted that on the West Coast, "almost every yoga studio, bar, and every little cafe, every little coffee house, they all have Kombucha."

Sas and Citrix now sell Tribucha on site. Whole Foods just signed a deal to sell it at stores across the Southeast.

"If the right people hear what we're doing, and they see how we're doing it and why we're doing it," Larrea said, "this is an operation that can scale up huge."

Tribucha costs about 5 dollars a bottle.

It will take a few months before you start seeing the drink at Whole Foods because York and Larrea are going to have to amp up their production.

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