By Eli Thorton
Weaverville – In the heart of Weaverville, a new craze is brewing. That craze is Jun and at the helm is Shanti of Shanti Elixirs. If you are unfamiliar with “Jun” it is very similar to Kombucha, but instead of fermenting a scoby (symbiotic yeast and bacteria) with sugar and black tea, Jun is fermented with honey and green tea.
Jun is known as the champagne of Kombucha because of the rich flavors and pre- and probiotics that it contains. Jun originated in the Himalayan Mountains thousands of years ago and Shanti Elixirs is the first company on the East Coast to bring that brew to the Appalachian Mountains using locally sourced honey from her personal apiary (Blissful Bee Apiary) and also sourcing from Haw Creek Honey.
Shanti’s story is that of community and empowerment. Growing up in a holistic and Yogi environment, Shanti was exposed to the power of service through her family and traveling the world. The business, Shanti Elixirs, was born out of love for a health-conscious drink that she learned to brew at a Sacred Beekeeping seminar for family and friends.
As Shanti became more involved and knowledgeable with the brew, friends and family wanted more and more. Eventually, the demand led to the creation of Shanti Elixirs in March of 2017. As Shanti is a nurse, holistic practitioner and perinatal educator, her goal has been to educate people about how to be healthy while maintaining a healthy balance with the environment around them.
Community is essential to Shanti, so with already over 120 different venues in the area that serve the elixir such as Maggie B’s on Main Street Weaverville and the Honey and The Hive, Shanti is still striving to get more local establishments in the Weaverville area to embrace this ancient brew. Community to Shanti also involves the world around us and that includes the honey bees, for, without them, the blend would not be possible.
Through the various workshops held at the Lake Eden Arts Festival, Honey and the Hive, The Mother Earth News festival at the Agricultural Center and the Asheville Coffee Expo with their own coffee/Jun Elixir and other various locations throughout Western North Carolina, Shanti educates people about not only brewing Jun, but also the critical role the honey bee has in our everyday world.
The honey bee as a species is in decline, so it is crucial for Shanti to educate and make the community aware of their importance to our ecosystem. If you would like to learn more about Shanti Elixirs visit shantielixirs.com, or check them out on facebook @ShantiElixirs or head to the Weaverville Tailgate Market on your Wednesday afternoon behind Reems Creek Nursery.