Gather up these supplies: 6 black tea bags, 1 cup of sugar, coffee pot or pan to heat water, gallon glass jar, coffee filter, and cheesecloth.
Wash your glass jar and cure with white vinegar (rinse). Scoby must be handled with clean hands that have also been rinsed with vinegar.
Fill the coffee pot to 4 cups and brew the water. Place 6 tea bags in the hot water and allow to steep. While water is still warm, dissolve 1 cup of sugar in the tea. Stir with a wooden spoon. Allow the tea to cool.
Pour the tea into a gallon jar and fill with water until approximately 3⁄4 jar is full. Place scoby, scoby tea reserved, into the jar. Pour reserved tea on top of scoby. Cover jar with cone-shaped coffee filter and wrap in cheesecloth. Wrap a large rubber band around filter if desired.
Stick a thermometer strip to the jar. Place the bottle in a dark place. During cold weather months, wrap heat mat around the jar. 78-80 degrees. If it gets too warm, loosen the mat.
Scoby will grow with each fermentation process and can be divided to share or ferment more at a time.
Start tasting the tea on day 10 to decide if the kombucha is tangy enough. Remember, don't use a metal spoon, use a plastic or wood spoon to sample.
When the kombucha is to your desired taste, prep your bottles for the 2nd fermentation by rinsing each 16 oz bottle with white vinegar.
Peel and chop the ginger. Divide ginger among bottles. Remove scoby with clean and vinegar rinsed hands, and place in a bowl with 2 cups of kombucha tea. The reserved tea will be used for your next batch or to sit in the gallon jar with the scoby until you make another batch.
Pour kombucha tea into each jar using a plastic funnel. Do not fill over 3⁄4 full. During the 2nd ferment, you'll burp the bottles daily. Slowly uncap and allow air to escape the bottles. Place bottles in the refrigerator after 3-5 days.
A small scoby may develop in each bottle and this is completely normal.
If desired, strain kombucha into a glass before drinking. Use a plastic strainer.