The Canned Tepache Brand You'll Soon Find In Whole Foods

If you love trendy fermented drinks such as kombucha and kefir, you might know that the tradition of fermented beverages is an age-old and worldwide one. In Eastern Europe, you can sip beet kvass, which My Fermentation describes as a deep purple ferment made from beets and salt; In Finland, you might be offered sima, a fermented lemon soda made to greet the arrival of spring (via Adamant Kitchen); And in Guyana, you might down a cool glass of sweet potato fly, a tonic made from sugar, grated sweet potatoes, and additional flavorings including ginger and lime peel, per Gastro Obscura. But spend some time in Mexico, and there's no doubt you'll come across tepache.

An omnipresent Mexican beverage with origins in the states of Oaxaca and Veracruz, tepache is made by fermenting pineapple peels with the unprocessed brown sugar known as panela or piloncillo (via Mexico in My Kitchen). The resulting drink is sweet, fruity, and lightly fizzy, the perfect antidote to a sizzling-hot day, and its probiotic bacteria are thought to benefit the gut microbiome. Traditionally made at home across Mexico, one brand has been preparing and canning the ancient beverage for sale in the U.S. since last year, and as of this week its product is available at Whole Foods stores nationwide.

De La Calle's tepache flavors include Orange Tumeric and Mango Chili

If you visited your local Whole Foods Market this week, you may have noticed a new probiotic drink for sale, packaged up in a rainbow of attractively shaded cans ranging from sunny yellow to bright fuchsia: It's De La Calle tepache, a product that's the result of a business union between an American entrepreneur and a Mexican food scientist. As recounted on the brand's About page, Alex Matthews discovered cool, refreshing tepache on a Mexico City trip and became enchanted. Later, he was introduced to Mexican-born Rafael Martin Del Campo, a fermentation nerd who prepared the drink from his grandmother's recipe. De La Calle was born and last year started selling canned tepache in about 4,000 retail locations (via a press release). As of this week, those locations will expand to include more than 500 Whole Foods stores across the country, plus select Target, Kroger, and The Fresh Market locations.

"We are delighted to be launching nationwide with Whole Foods Market as it furthers our vision to introduce tepache to a broader audience across the country," De La Calle co-founder and CEO Matthews said in the press release.

Made from organic pineapples and turbinado sugar, De La Calle's carbonated tepache comes in additional flavors such as Grapefruit Lime, Watermelon JalapeƱo, and Cactus Prickly Pear, contains less than 45 calories per serving, and is rich in probiotics and vitamin C. You just might want to add it to your cart the next time tacos, quesadillas, or elotes are on the menu.