Castle Antiques continues to morph, with Nectr Kombucha joining the Schleifenbaum family in downtown Haliburton.

Lucus Esson, of Nectr Kombucha, said The Nectr Hive (brewery) will relocate to the corner of Maple and Highland streets, where a new, dedicated space at Castle Antiques will not only brew, but also showcase the kombucha process to the public.

Esson and Anna Lowes (her married name), of Castle Antiques, said the collaboration brings together Nectr’s “innovative” kombucha brewing and Castle Antiques’ “rich heritage, blending a unique mix of vintage charm and modern wellness in a historic setting.”

Esson said, “partnering with Anna and Castle Antiques not only aligns with our vision, but also elevates our ability to craft exceptional kombucha.”

Lowes added, “integrating Nectr’s brewing operation into Castle Antiques provides a fantastic opportunity for visitors to engage with the art of kombucha-making. We’re thrilled to bring this experience to Haliburton and further enrich the health and vitality of our community.”

The two businesses are planning a future launch event but the date has yet to be determined.

At Castle April 23, work on the space on the parking lot side of the building is continuing. Lowes provides a tour, saying her former office is being converted into two areas; a fermentation room and a space where the boilers and finishing occurs. There are windows looking into the kombucha rooms.

“You’ll be able to see what’s going on as it’s happening,” Lowes said.

She said there will be different flavours available at only Castle, limited runs and seasonal runs, as well as flights of kombucha to try “and just have a lot of fun with it.”

Lowes said it fits in nicely, as Castle Antiques is now more than just an antique shop; combining vintage antiques with modern wellness via a vegan and gluten-free café. It is also now home to Paquito Loco and The Music Room.

Since its founding in 2020, Nectr Kombucha has grown from Haliburton County’s first commercial kombucha producer to a brand available in more than 40 locations.

Esson said they were moving over this week from Little Hawk Lake Resort. Then, it will take another couple of weeks to get up-and-running. “Within the next couple of weeks, we’ll be producing in there.

“I think it will be really good. I’ve always had an idea of having a central location. I think it will be really nice for the community to see inside the process. But also with Castle Antiques, there are so many people coming through here. When they’re able to see that it’s made right here by us… they’ll feel more of a connection and be more likely to try it out.”

Esson has done most of the work the last four years, with help from summer students, so he will welcome Lowes’ staff to help out. It will allow him to focus more on marketing.

Esson actually reached out to Lowes. She’s “loved his product since day one.” They were the first business to stock his kombucha. “It makes sense here,” Lowes said.

Esson and Lowes said the grand opening “promises to be a vibrant celebration of the partnership, featuring kombucha tastings, live music, and a look at the new facility. This event will be an excellent opportunity for the community to engage with the process behind Nectr Kombucha and enjoy the unique atmosphere of Castle Antiques.”