We had the good fortune of connecting with Debbie McCall and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Debbie, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
The thought process for my kombucha business has really been more out of necessity and enjoying the journey. We did not intentionally set out to “start a business”, but demand just continued to increase. We didn’t even have a business plan in the beginning but rather learned it was apparent we needed to plan for larger production than maybe we initially thought.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I LOVE being creative and have learned to work within my passions. I’m working on enjoying the process and not getting bound up by mundane things. Producing our kombucha takes longer, and costs more to produce than other brands, but I wouldn’t want to serve anything less to our friends and family! It’s that uncompromising commitment that results in the amazing taste and health benefits that contribute to our brands’ success.
Many other brands claim to use “mountain water” but we think any water coming from a treatment plant, doesn’t stack up to real water from the mountain. We knew there were additives in treated water, such as chlorination or other chemicals that would impact the live cultures in kombucha. We brew at 8,000ft with water that comes directly from the ground, through a purification system. We didn’t stop there; we also get approximately 98% of our electricity from the sun, and the herbs and teas left over after the fermentation process becomes a probiotic supplement for our chickens. We call it chicken crack, they love it. The eggs they produce are appreciated by the recipients.
The biggest challenges we’ve faced relate to expansion-related decisions – how big and how soon to expand. The nice thing about our business model is that we only expand at the pace we want to expand. It’s so important to have a vision that can guide those decisions.
It’s our mission to help inform the world about the importance of the digestive system and promote healing from the inside out.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
After a walk through the historic downtown of Golden, a refreshing kombucha cocktail is an ideal way to complete a day visiting the town we call home. Of course, it’s a must to visit our little ranch and more specifically, our private/by invite-only, VIP lounge so you can try some of the many kombucha flavors we keep on tap.
Cafe 13 offers our kombucha mango mimosas and has our kombucha on tap. Love having breakfast or lunch there. The food is fresh-baked. It’s one of our favorite restaurants.
But, in our opinion, the real fun begins when you get out of the city! Whether hiking up a private trail, or star gazing on the patio, it’s hard to beat the beauty of this amazing place!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
We’ve had so many people inspire and support us, and anytime you put yourself out there in business, it can become a very personal part of you. Brewing kombucha is like an art to me. To our friends and amazing customers we have walked through this experience with, they have been our inspiration! Often providing the feedback we needed to make product adjustments and giving us the fuel /encouragement we needed to keep growing. I’m a member of Golden Women in Business. The connection with local business owners has been so helpful. I received a scholarship from GWiB for a mentorship with Pinnacle Journey. It’s a mentorship program for small women-owned business owners in Golden Colorado.
I would like to recognize Jen Tompke, the owner of Cafe 13 in Golden. They were our first restaurant!
Meg Smit the owner of Golden Living publication highlighted our family in the February magazine. Our mountain neighbors. We have lots of kombucha cocktail parties.
Our 18-year-old son is a senior at Golden HighSchool. He manages a Chick Fil A and helps us when needed. He’s awesome! And mostly, my husband Jason. His love, support, and encouragement for me to follow my dreams.
Abby Bowan, High Altitude Kombucha social media representative https://goodmorrowphotography.com Natalie Morrow