VENTURA COUNTY, Calif. -- Whether you're a kombucha loyalists, or someone who would rather pass on the fermented tea beverage, there's a lot more to appreciate then just flavor at one local beverage company that started out in a kitchen.
Bill Moses is the owner of Flying Embers Organic Hard Kombucha, which unlike other brands is made with 4.5 percent alcohol content.
While this venture may be in its infancy, Moses is not a stranger to the space.
In fact, his previous kombucha company, KeVita recently sold to Pepsi for over $200 million.
Even still, he takes the time to check on the day-to-day operations because he has pride in not only what's being made, but who's making it.
“To have a company and a team and a vision, and to watch it grow, and watch it get set to sail, is the epitome of life and success and everything I've ever dreamed of,” said Moses.
But recently, Moses and his longtime friend and business partner, Caspar Poyck said that they were reminded of how the company was almost never formed.
Back in November of 2018, when the Woolsey fire blazed its way through Thousand Oaks.
“It was one of those feelings that just captures you. Here we go again, like how many times do you have to go through this?” said Pocyk.
In 2017, when the Thomas fire was burning through Ojai, the home where Poyck, Moses and others were in the early testing phases of the drink, was also in the line of fire.
Fortunately, a wind gust took the fire uphill, and the only thing they had to fight were flying embers.
Moses said, “I just had a tremendous amount of reverence for fire. Tremendous amount of respect for first responders and firemen.”
It's that respect that's led him to donate a portion of sales to first responders in California.
The company, that officially started six months ago, is now in full operation and Moses hopes that people around town will take just as much pride as he does in what he's created.
“The most important thing to me is being able to generate community value [and to] do things for the community,” he said.