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Over the last few years, I have been on a big gut health kick. After learning that your gut plays a huge role in your overall health and well-being, I’m all about ensuring that my gut is the best in the game. I’ve taken supplements, drank kombucha almost daily, and even brewed my own kombucha. Through all of this, I genuinely feel better; I have more energy and get sick less.
Naturally, I’m always down to try the latest and greatest way to improve my digestive health. When I recently spotted De La Calle’s Tepache drink – which is chock full of probiotics and boasts insanely alluring packaging – I had to take it for spin.
Admittedly, I had never heard of Tepache (pronounced “teh-pah-chay”) until quite recently. It’s a traditional Mexican drink made from pineapple, water, and brown sugar. Similar to kombucha, Tepache is fermented; unlike kombucha, however, Tepache does not include the use of a SCOBY, or a bacteria culture, to ferment the drink. Rather, it uses a base ingredient of pineapple.
The drink is hundreds of years old and has a nearly infinite number of spice combinations – such as Watermelon Jalepeño and Cactus Prickly Pear – to create unique flavors. In addition to packing a fun punch, Tepache is designed to improve your gut health thanks to its naturally occurring probiotic and prebiotic properties. These “good bacteria” help to ensure your immune system is able to fight off “bad bacteria” to keep you healthy and feeling good. Tepache is also high in antioxidants, which protect you against heart disease and other conditions.
While Tepache has been celebrated in Mexico for over 600 years, it has not been widely available in the United States. That is until De La Calle’s founders, Alex Matthews and Rafael Martin Del Campo, decided that it was high time to share the culture and flavor-filled profile of this drink with the world. Derived from Rafael’s grandmother’s grandmother’s recipe, De La Calle’s Tepache seeks to share the rich history of Mexican street culture with the masses.
A Rainbow of Colors
I always get a little nervous when receiving refrigerated products. It’s been about 100 degrees every day where I live, and it’s likely that this package had spent a few days in hot warehouses and trucks before it got to me. When it got to me, though, it was totally cool and looked like it had just rolled off the packaging line.
I got the Mixta Variety Pack ($46.99 for 12 cans) to try as many flavors as possible. When I opened the box, the first thing I noticed was an array of colors: cool blues, fun pinks, and punchy greens that downright made me happy to just look at. As someone who likes sweeter drinks, searching through the variety made me a little nervous. The flavors, such as Mango Chili and Chamoy, certainly sounded interesting, but I wasn’t quite sure what to expect.
Sugar, Spice, and Everything Nice
The first flavor I tried was the Grapefruit Lime. I was dashing out the door to go run some errands and wanted something sweet to sip on the way. Boy, did I pick well! I wish I could go back to the first sip I tried. Tepache, if you haven’t tried it, is less “punchy” than kombucha, but still has a similar slightly fizzy feel. Kombucha can often taste like a sour beer, whereas I would put Tepache more in the cider-tasting category. With its sweet tanginess, it’s unlike anything I’ve ever tasted.
Unlike cider, many of the flavors have a slightly spicy kick. Perfectly sharp, yet light and refreshing, Grapefruit Lime flavor offers something different – but not overwhelming. Flavors like Mango Chili, Watermelon Jalepeño, and Pineapple Spice took some getting used to for me.The spices are definitely noticeable, but still work well with the pineapple undertone. With a slightly smoky taste, these would be absolutely amazing mixed with some tequila on a Friday patio evening with friends.
When I looked down at the calorie count, I was totally floored – only 35 calories? Most comparable drinks fall in the 75-100 calorie range.
Since De La Calle’s Tepache comes in cans, you can enjoy it in just about every setting. It’s Tepache tradition to enjoy the drink in the streets of Mexico around family and friends, so it is only fitting to enjoy De La Calle’s take on it with those you love.
If you’re looking for a new drink to spice up your gut health or swap your soda with, give De La Calle’s Tepache a try. With its unique flavor profile, low calorie count, and versatility, I’m thrilled that this drink’s sweet secret has spread from the streets of Mexico straight to my doorstep.
5 More Reasons to Love De La Calle’s Tepache:
1. All of De La Calle’s Tepaches are less than 40 calories and are low in sugar, so you can feel good about what you’re putting in your body.
2. De La Calle is only getting started with its flavor offerings; expect many more recipes to come in the future from co-founder Rafa.
3. The drinks utilize Mexican art and recipes as inspiration and proudly support the spirit of Mexican street culture, hence the name “De La Calle,” which means “of the street.”
4. Tepache has naturally occurring prebiotic and probiotic qualities, which can significantly improve your gut (and therefore your overall) health.
5. De La Calle offers both a subscription and on-demand ordering model, so you are in the driver’s seat when it comes to ordering.