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Why should we be sour faced when everything is so yeastful! Kis in Kvas (vinegar and yeast) – an excellent idea that was the brainchild of Goran Žerdin and Sanja Čakarun – is a brand of fermented products that bring aficionados a wide selection of unforgettable tastes.

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How did it all begin?

Goran and Sanja are fans of fermentation and can expound upon the wonderful world of useful microorganisms for hours on end without spuming stupidities and making the listener go barmy.

Goran became hooked on fermentation, an ancient method of preserving food, some years ago when he began making his own kefir and kombucha at home. Observing the mysterious procedures and the tiny battles of epic proportions that unfurl between microorganisms in preserving jars grew into a fondness that became the leavener of their vision – to prepare fresh, healthy, and good quality fermented food according to traditional recipes from around the world.

In creating new specialities and testing fresh combinations they are led by their curiosity and an ever-increasing amount of knowledge, which helps them develop more demanding and obscure recipes. Goran’s passionate experimenting with ingredients and intense smells (which sometimes annoy his neighbours) is perfectly balanced out by Sanja, who helps refine the recipes to create specialities that are snapped up with pleasure by an ever-increasing multitude of amateur and professional cooks, and especially eaters.

What should you know about the Kis in Kvas brand and shop?

The tastes for which Kis in Kvas is famous are rather special. Complex, intense, surprising, inspiring – stemming from tradition and yet modern – they open the doors to the infinite diversity of the world of fermentation with a selection of products that are typical of Asian cuisine and which are slowly but surely making their way onto Slovenian dining tables. It would be a sin not to try the specialties that line the shelves of the Kis in Kvas shop, most of which boast the organic certificate – all sorts of fresh and unpasteurised tempeh, spicy and non-spicy versions of kimchi, miso pastes and soy sauces, natto and amazake.

For all those of you who are only beginning to get to grips with the complex tastes (for our part of the world) of less traditional fermented products, Sanja and Goran will be pleased to share some advice for home use, while fermentation buffs should ask them, or attend one of their courses as soon as possible, and inquire about their recipes for refreshing yeast, delicious chutney, or some completely new idea to make use of the vegetable leftover from your garden.

Mouth-watering Umami!

The future will be delicious! All those of you who are constantly on the lookout for elusive flavours should note in your diaries the date on which the shelves of Kis in Kvas receive fresh deliveries of kimchi. There are rumours in the world of microorganisms these days that Sanja and Goran recently ordered a tonne and a half of Napa cabbage from the Kmetija Novak farm in Savlje.

© Suzan Gabrijan