It’s two years since we ran a feature on fermentation fever, and that fever still shows no sign of breaking. This was evident at the 8th Annual Fermentation Fest, where we ate our way through everything from kraut to kombucha, all made at home by attendees using ancient methods that harness wild microbes, yielding both good health and amazing flavor. Michael Pollan would have loved it.
Follow the signs, or your nose. The annual fermentation meet-up convened at the Brooklyn Free School in Ft Greene / Clinton Hill:
Beyond tastings, the crowded D.I.Y. event featured fermentation workshops and culture swaps. Angela Davis led a workshop called “Sour Power: Feremented Veggies for Vital Health.”
There were tables for breads, booze, dairy, even cured meats. This one groaned with pickles, krauts and kimchis — featuring everything from Brussels sprouts to bacon.
Organizer Zach Schulman and his sigg-o glowed with health as they piled plates. Their biomes must be booming.
D.I.Y. drinks on offer included mint wine, parsley wine and ginger beer.
Tapping “short mead,” a heady honey wine.
Fruit of the vine: microbes feast on the sugars in peaches and pears, yielding wonderfully funky, sweet-and-sour ciders and saisons.
These brews were wonderfully flavorful, making my mouth as happy as my gut.
Nosy. Participants got up close and personal with specimens, like this 7-month-old ferment.
Photo credit: Clara Waloff