Coffee & Kombucha: Wayne Waszak from KB Kombucha
20 April 2021
From building to bottling, Wayne Waszak has transformed his career and is now doing what he loves. Co-owner of KB Kombucha, Wayne was previously a builder and facilities manager but now spends his days amid a tantalising array of Kombucha products, all sold alongside Emporio Coffee from KB’s flagship store in Taranaki St, Wellington.
We visited Wayne at KB Kombucha, next to Les Mills Gym, to find out more.
You’ve got quite a range of Kombucha on offer
We’ve got ten regular flavours of Kombucha on tap plus we have two ‘guest flavours’ that are always changing. We’re also just launching a very special kombucha using the world’s most expensive tea, it’s called dragon tea.
We also sell salads, hot food, smoothies and juices. It’s all about collaboration, particularly with other local businesses.
Is loving local why you chose Emporio as your coffee supplier?
Partly, yes. I love that Emporio is local, and still Wellington-owned and operated. I love working with Simon and have generally been very impressed with the personal touch the Emporio provides.
KB Kombucha is as sustainable as possible …
Definitely, we reuse all the bottles, all of which, as well as the labels, are New Zealand-made. The cafes we supply (about 20 mainly in the Wellington region) give the bottles back to us to reuse.
We also use ceramic not plastic for the vessels the kombucha is created in. These are probably the only things that aren’t NZ-made, they come in from Germany.
Who are your main clients?
Being adjacent to Les Mills, we obviously get a lot of gym clientele but there are also people who live and work around here, and lots of students.
What do you love most about kombucha?
Kombucha is such a fascinating product, it’s organic, it’s natural!
The business is very a different world from my previous life, I love that. I got involved through a friend, now my business partner, who had started making kombucha. He’s based at our headquarters in Alicetown, where the kombucha is manufactured. He started supplying cafes in about 2017 and I got involved a couple of years ago. We now supply about 20 cafes, mainly in the Wellington region.
It’s a lot of work but I still manage to keep Mondays as golf day!