Then, another discovery from the amazing Fancy Food Show, we hear the story behind Revive Kombucha. Co-founder of Revive Kombucha, Sean Lovett, tells a story of how a mission to make a Kombucha that is not only healthy, but tasty and supporting the environment, can grow from small farm stand into a rapidly growing vision.
Matt LightnerExecutive Chef, Ninebark, Napa
Over the last decade, Lightner has become a name synonymous with culinary excellence.Born and raised in the Midwest, Lightner first moved to the West Coast in 1999, where he graduated culinary school and began his cooking career working in kitchens from Oregon to California including chef de cuisine at L'Auberge in Del Mar, California.
From there, Lightner set path overseas where he worked in some of the world's greatest kitchens including a stage at Noma in Copenhagen and an exclusive 18-month program at Mugaritz in the Basque region of Spain where he developed and perfected the techniques and flavors he is incorporating into the NINEBARK repertoire.Upon arrival back in the U.S., Lightner became the executive chef at Castagna in Portland, Oregon where he was named one of Food & Wine's “Best New Chefs in America" and was nominated “Rising Star Chef" by the James Beard Foundation two consecutive years in a row. In 2012, Lightner moved to New York City, where he opened Atera and received 2 stars from the Michelin Guide in the first six months of business. At Atera, he went on to receive 3 stars from The New York Times, 4 stars from New York Magazine and was included in Bon Appetit's “Best 50 New Restaurants" and Esquire's “Best New Restaurants" lists.
Founder, Revive KombuchaWhen Revive Kombucha launched at the Santa Rosa Farmer’s Market in 2010, it was their mission to make an amazing tasting kombucha that people loved and felt good about. They put theired their hearts into it, and it worked, making a great Kombucha that was organic, vegan, raw, packed with probiotics.
Back then it was just a tiny operation, with Rebekah and Sean Lovett, brewing and self-distributing bottles to local grocers, working their cart at the farmer’s markets and driving kegs to nearby restaurants. They started by selling one flavor, The O.G., and with one foot in front of the other, they grew from their little mom and pop operation, into one of the best-selling Kombuchas in Sonoma County. Now they have eight flavors, still organic, still vegan, still raw, and each with their own distinct craft brew style, including their caffeine-free Free Ride, and their ultra-low sugar Ascend.As they’ve grown, Revive has also taken the lead on environmental production and bottling practices. They’re as sustainable for the earth and positive for their community as they know how to achieve. They source certified organic, fair-trade, non-GMO certified ingredients, and seek out local products, purveyors and partners. They use water recycling and reclamation to further reduce their environmental impact and most notably. And, they run the only bottle exchange program in the United States. Every bottle they sell can be returned to be washed and used again. It wasn’t easy to make Bottle Exchange work, but with the partnership of their customers and stores, they’ve retrieved and reused over 75% of their bottles, day after day, for five years. That’s thousands of tons of bottles kept out of the manufacturing and waste stream!