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100

When KaiMatcha first appeared on Steepster with a win-free-matcha promotion, I was quite harsh on them. Not because I am out to be a mean person, but because I prefer to give criticism to any tea companies that may be genuinely trying rather than simply let them do something I do not like – I want as many tea companies to be successful as possible. I think that helps the tea-drinking community.

I did not like their website. I still don’t. In fact, I hate their website. I do not object to a focus on health benefits so much – I think tea should sell itself on taste alone, but I also really believe in the health value of tea, and I know some people have been put off by bad experiences with tea – but I do not get a welcoming feel from the site. When I look at it, I feel like I ought to be ordering a StairMaster and getting some free knock-off Tupperware because I ordered NOW!

Am I wrong about that? Am I wrong to think the general public will feel the same way? Perhaps. Maybe they will look at it differently. I don’t know. I did not offer criticism to KaiMatcha on the basis of, “you suck,” but on the basis of, “I am suspicious that you might suck; this looks sketchy to me.”

But I did see KaiMatcha say in the tea vendor’s thread that they felt they have a very quality product and were disappointed no one was interested in trying it yet. Their confidence in their product was interesting. I ultimately felt that I would wait to see what Steepster said about this company and its product. I kept the review page for KaiMatcha Premium open in a saved tab, and refreshed it every day to be there for the first reviews.

When they rolled in and were highly positive, I immediately ordered a can to see for myself. (The one good thing about their website: they take Paypal, hah.)

It arrived today. I shouldn’t drink any THIS late, but I am really upset about some drama at work I will have to deal with, and I having been wanting to know for myself what it is like. So I decided to whisk up a quarter-teaspoon to try it straight and then just dump half of it.

The can is nice. It is sealed much like the Teavana matcha I’m already used to, with a pop top and a screw cap. When I opened it, wow! What a fantastic, fresh, sweet smell. I mean, really sweet.

It didn’t foam up that great, but I’m 100% sure that this is because I’m not whisking it in wide enough bowls. I really want a good stoneware matcha bowl! With a spout, preferably. I can’t seem to get a darn thing to foam at home, even when I get beautiful foam at work (so it’s not my technique). So “low foam covering 70% of the surface” is actually doing better than all the other matcha I’ve tried so far.

I had this straight, no sweetener at all, and…

It’s totally drinkable. Now I finally understand what people mean when they say that good matcha should not be bitter. This must be good matcha, because it’s not bitter in the slightest and it’s very smooth. A bit sweet, a bit creamy. It tastes like green veggies and not like bitter grass drenched in dog urine. It’s not my thing in the sense that I will never be a big green drinker; but I can tell that it is a very good green even though it does not personally excite me. The very fact that I can drink it straight immediately pushes it above a 90. That it is this good at its price point puts it at least on par with Jade Dragon (one of my few actual green tea loves). This is only a few sips worth, so I will give it some more experimental time and report back if I am adjusting the rating or have more to say about it.

…Oh wait. It’s gone stone cold now (haha, so much typing) and I managed to slurp it (which you can’t do when it’s hot) and discovered an intense creamy sweetness at the back. I’m tired, so I just realized that I was not trying to really aerate my sips for the best taste. Of course, I never remember to do that 100% of the time; but if I drank it more thoughtfully, this would be a very rich and drinkable green. Also, this tells me that this matcha would also be good iced.

I think that’s enough for 100.

Sil

You may have convinced me to try this someday

ashmanra

Yes, I think my hubby and daughter and I are going to destroy my tin in no time flat. I found this to be a very pleasant tea, smooth and buttery. I don’t know if I am a good “whisker” but I got a decent amount of froth using my plain metal kitchen whisk. I do think it will be even easier once I get a real bamboo whisk. I am saving up for some things on the Zen Tea Life website – I love the black bamboo whisk! I don’t know if I can restrain myself much longer….

OwenjMayer

I agree 100% with you about being put off by the website. It makes matcha out to be a huge health fad and feels very commercial. However, since I have faith in my fellow Steepsters I’ll give it a try as I’m finding I like matcha.

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Comments

Sil

You may have convinced me to try this someday

ashmanra

Yes, I think my hubby and daughter and I are going to destroy my tin in no time flat. I found this to be a very pleasant tea, smooth and buttery. I don’t know if I am a good “whisker” but I got a decent amount of froth using my plain metal kitchen whisk. I do think it will be even easier once I get a real bamboo whisk. I am saving up for some things on the Zen Tea Life website – I love the black bamboo whisk! I don’t know if I can restrain myself much longer….

OwenjMayer

I agree 100% with you about being put off by the website. It makes matcha out to be a huge health fad and feels very commercial. However, since I have faith in my fellow Steepsters I’ll give it a try as I’m finding I like matcha.

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Bio

I’ve always been a tea drinker – I grew up drinking Tetley’s Orange Pekoe and their Chai, and considered myself to really like tea.

I’ve been working various retail jobs to put myself through higher education. One day at my store, a customer left a newly purchased bag of loose-leaf behind. We waited for three days for said customer to return, but they (likely not realizing where they had left their bag) did not return to claim the would-be brew. Too bad for them; lucky for me! I claimed the bag, took it home, and awkwardly made my first cup of loose-leaf tea with the only strainer we owned which was small enough.

I haven’t bothered with Tetley since. For the most part (and due to convenience), my patronage is limited to David’s Tea and Teavana. I also order from 52teas and Verdant Tea.

My rating system – hah, I don’t have a rating system. I rate teas a lot like Ebert rates movies. Everything’s relative.

I may often forget to mention it, but you can safely assume everything I drink is sweetened in one way or another – most rock sugar, or honey for green and white teas. I have not yet achieved drinking most tea clear. The few teas I drink unsweetened include milk oolong and genmaicha so far.

The guy in my avatar can be bought at Teaopia or here: http://www.jas-etea.com/products/Jingdezhen-%22Easy%22-Gaiwan-%22Blue-on-White-Phoenix%22-100ml.html

I currently work for Teavana. But I just work there, and my opinions about any of their teas are entirely my own and not meant to be reflective of the views of the company.

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