Den's Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

100

Steeped this a bit long, and used a bit too much leaf. But I decided to just dump the rest of my sample in, since I wouldn’t have enough for two more anyway. It’s not bad, just a bit more astringent than I would prefer. Still yummy, though. :) I love the smoothness and the thickness that the matcha gives it. I’ve decided I need to get some straight matcha at some point. Maybe in a couple months, after I recover from the massive tea spree I’ve been on the past few months!

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 1 min, 0 sec
the quiet life

2nd steep is sweet and delicious – more like how I was hoping the 1st would be. I steeped it for less time the 2nd time around, too, which helps when using so much leaf.

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100

I reeeeeeally don’t want to do work today. This week. This month, really, lol. So I decided another cup of tea was in order. It is, after all, a more delicious way to spend my time. :P I was in the mood for genmaicha and was feeling pretty sad that I hadn’t brought my ginormous bag of Kyoto Rice with me today, until I remembered that I DO have my Den’s samples with me! Though I drank my Genmaicha Extra Green teabag sample, I still had the whole loose tea sample of it. Yay!!

I gotta say, the loose leaf version has a really scary look to it, hahaha. Everything’s covered in the matcha, which gives it this glowy, fuzzy, so-bright-it’s-unnatural green look. I found it minutely entertaining. :P (This is the time of day where I go a liiiiittle bit crazy from wanting to go home so badly.)

Anyway, I think I didn’t use enough leaf per amount of water, as it doesn’t taste quite as strongly awesome as it did with the teabag, but it’s still tasty, and still hits the spot! :D

One hour and 5 minutes until I can go leave…

Preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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100

LOVE this! This is just the right combination of everything. I love the smoothness of it, and the roasty taste of the rice. I’m definitely going to have to get some of this!

I’m also really loving the fact that Den’s Tea really transports me back to the time I spent in Japan. It’s funny how tastes can do that!

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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86

Mmmm houjicha. ♥ This has a smooth, nutty flavor that I really really like. :D I’ve definitely had this in restaurants before (well, maybe not Den’s, but some kind of houjicha), and it gives me such a good, relaxed feeling, I can’t help but enjoy it! :)

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 0 min, 15 sec

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62

This isn’t my favorite sencha ever, but it’s quite tasty! :) It’s smooth and earthy. I like it! But I’m still searching for my favorite sencha.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 0 min, 30 sec

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25

YAY! My Den’s sampler came yesterday! Unfortunately, the first tea I tried (this one) was expressly the type of green tea I DON’T like. :( It just tastes too vegetal for me, with some bitterness I’m not a fan of. I can tell, though, that this is high quality stuff. It’s just not the type I like.

Oh well. On to the next cup!

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 0 min, 30 sec
Ricky

Sencha took me several tries to overcome it. Same with Earl Grey and Chai. Now I love all of them. Some more than others, but you get the point =P

the quiet life

Oh, I love sencha! I just don’t love this sencha, unfortunately. :( Until recently, I didn’t know there were different types of sencha, haha, so now I have to find the kind I remember from Japan! :P I’m glad to hear you’ve overcome Earl Grey and Chai. Those are two other favorites of mine! :)

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90
drank Pineapple Sencha by Den's Tea
355 tasting notes

Best part of sencha: knowing that great resteeps are yet to come.

This tea is so delicious, and hopefully will help me on my eternal quest to drink more greens. Light, sweet, buttery, and with an intoxicating pineapple aroma. I still have a small sample bag of their orange sencha that I need to try.

Cofftea

I wish this was closer in price to The Tea Farm’s pineapple green! Their orange is good so I’m hoping this one is a heck of a lot more pineappley than TTF’s version.

Bethany

It is VERY pineappley. If you love pineapple, you’ll love this. It reminds me of those sugary sweet dried pineapple pieces you can buy at the grocery store.

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90
drank Pineapple Sencha by Den's Tea
355 tasting notes

Second steep. Much grassier and more floral, with a hint of pineapple sweetness.

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90
drank Pineapple Sencha by Den's Tea
355 tasting notes

Wow, this is good. Like, really good. Perfect combo of sweet grassy Sencha and really sweet pineapple. The pineapple isn’t overwhelming but definitely complements the Sencha beautifully. It’s like the sweetness of the Sencha flows right into the sweeter pineapple. I also got a free sample of their Orange Sencha with my order, so I’m curious to see how that compares.

So far I’m really loving Den’s Teas!

TeaEqualsBliss

One of these days I would love to try Den’s Teas! :P

Cofftea

Yeah they can be quite addicting:) This is on my shopping list!:)

fcmonroe

I’ve got some of this unopened. Next time I use up a tea, maybe I should break into this one!

Jillian

I went ahead and got their $3 Starter Set – apparently they’ll even refund the amount with your first purchase of $15 or more.

Cofftea

Jillian, you can get that w/ no other items in your order?

Jillian

I did, and they didn’t seem to have a problem with that. *shrugs *

Cofftea

…facepalm… Oh well, I probably would have gone w/ Den’s for my matcha set anyway.

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88
drank Sencha Fuka-midori by Den's Tea
355 tasting notes

Definitely steeped too long last time. Shut down steeping as soon as I finished pouring in my water (it took about 10-15 seconds since I had to wait for the leaves to absorb the water), and it’s much sweeter and lighter this time. No bitterness at the end. Upping my rating, and putting this on my shopping list!

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88
drank Sencha Fuka-midori by Den's Tea
355 tasting notes

My Den’s order came today! Talk about super quick service. I reallllly want to try the matcha, but it’s too late in the evening for that. So I decided to try this out first, which came in my sampler.

This is pretty freaking great. As I’ve said a million times before, I generally don’t love green teas. But this is sweet, soft, and so soothing. There is a bitterness at the end of the sip that I don’t love – I’m not sure if I steeped too long or if that’s supposed to be there; Den’s website does mention a bitterness with this sencha.

This is the beginning and end of my sample, since I made a whole pot. Will report back on the next steep.

Cofftea

You’re smarter than I am. I tried mine at 9pm lol.

Ricky

Haha, I should have made something stronger than a white tea. I’m literally falling asleep right now. Wait so you got Den’s $3 sampler or made individual purchases? Or both?

Bethany

Both! I got the sampler, Pineapple Sencha, Genmaicha Extra Green, and Matcha Kaze.

fcmonroe

I was stupid and forgot to order the sampler. I guess I missed my chance, since it is for new customers only!

Cofftea

Ricky, it’s w/ purchase only. Fcmonroe, well it’s not like you wouldn’t want to buy large amounts of all the teas anyway lol:)

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54
drank Green Kukicha by Den's Tea
260 tasting notes

The Final Sipdown: Day 15.1

This sample came to me from Micah right when I was beginning to build up a real appreciation for kukicha. I was thinking that all kukicha was universally magnificent, and then I tried this sample.

That sounds like a dig. It’s not meant to be. Because in the same way that superheroes are really only as impressive as their enemies make them out to be, having a relatively mediocre tea can only make the good ones taste even better.

Not-so-great teas save me from taking the good teas for granted. One cannot even near-accurately label anything to be the peak of greatness without a decent spectrum of experience in the matter.

Looking at my prior rating on this tea, I find myself not wanting to adjust it. The drink is not…the best. It’s got this dull bitterness about it and lacks butteriness. Curious, I find myself going back to read my log and comparing this to the pith of an orange pretty much nails how this tea tastes to me.

The aftertaste is full of chlorophylly goodness, but it can’t save the tea. It has been said that the journey is more important than the destination, and while I only half agree with this, the journey that this tea travels to get to the finish does not boost, complement, or do anything to positively affect the aftertaste of the tea. Which is unfortunate.

And so, I bid adieu to Den’s kukicha sans regrets and look forward to future encounters with eager eyes.

Teas Downed: 25

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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54
drank Green Kukicha by Den's Tea
260 tasting notes

I’ve been on a really big kukicha kick lately, so when I got some of this from Micah in a tea swap it was one of the ones I decided to try first.

First off, I want to say that I think that kukicha is really pretty. I think it’s something about all those linear strips of varied, yet tonally cohesive greens. It makes me want to pull the colors into a room with some warm medium wood tones and fresh cream fabrics. […Am I bleeding HGTV yet?]

This particular tea, while pretty, unfortunately couldn’t run with the refreshing aesthetic it inspires [at least in my head]. It wasn’t nearly as buttery as the kukicha I’ve been inhaling [Samovar’s] and while it had grassy and nutty tones to it, it was missing a lot of that sun-kissed sweetness that makes grassy teas enjoyable to me.

In a way, the taste almost reminded me of the pith of an orange, but without the citrus taste and residual tartness. It rested somewhere in limbo between bland and bitter, in a way that wasn’t completely off-putting, but also wasn’t enjoyable.

Fortunately, some sweetness eventually began to arrive on the aftertaste and grew in volume on my breath, but it wasn’t enough to make it good. I’m going to take the water temperature down into the 160’s on the next go round, maybe steep it a bit longer, and see if I can get this tea to bloom.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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78

Double cup using premium sencha perameters- 1 TB tea/4oz water. As this is steeping it almost looks like a layered jello salad. The leaves are laying on the bottom of my ingenuity under the cloudy liquid which is topped by light green foam.

HOLY ASTRINGENCY! This definitely has pucker power. My tongue literally folds over on itself adding to the mouth feel that the matcha gives it. This would most definitely wake you up in the morning!

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 1 min, 30 sec
Cofftea

2nd infusion, 180 degrees steeped 30sec per their suggestion. There is definitely some astringency left, but there is also some matcha which gives it a thick mouth feel like the 1st infusion.

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78

This came as the tea for their Lucky Gold Tea. The color is a lime green which is surprising because of the matcha. This is a sweeter version of mecha. The matcha gives it a lovely, thick mouth feel. The one thing I can’t figure out though, is if this is just premium sencha dusted w/ matcha why are the steeping parameters different from those of premium sencha? I’ve also never seen a tea that is suggested to be steeped for a shorter time for the 2nd infusion so that’ll be interesting…

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Cofftea

I was quite hesitant to do the 2nd infusion at 15 sec as the website suggests, but I was shocked that it wasn’t much lighter in liquor or flavor than the 1st.

LissaMarie

mm this sounds interesting!

Cofftea

3rd infusion, 20 sec. almost identical to infusion 2.

Cofftea

4th infusion, 25 sec. Still a very good cuppa although there’s definitely more sencha then matcha by now.

Cofftea

5th infusion, 30 sec. Progressively sweeter.

Cofftea

6th infusion, 40 sec. 1st Liquor that’s noticeably lighter. Not as sweet, a bit astringent which gives the flavor palet depth and complexity.

Cofftea

7th infusion, 1 min. Very light, but still good. Astringent, yet sweet. Calling these leaves done. The only thing I hate about finely chopped leaves like this is that they’re a slimey mess after a few infusions.

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100
drank Lucky Gold Tea by Den's Tea
865 tasting notes

This was the sole reason I ordered the unflavored matcha I was out of from Den’s Tea instead of trying one from another company. I love it when companies have weird/strange/unique product offerings! This is made w/ premium sencha extra green so see my review there.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 1 min, 0 sec

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90
drank Matcha Kaze by Den's Tea
31 tasting notes

See previous note for this tea

I didn’t mention this in the last note and wanted to add that this matcha is very smooth, among all of its other great qualities.

My first matcha ever was Teavana’s matcha… which is absolutely disgusting – unless you like drinking bland flavored water with the texture of sand. That experience almost turned me off to matcha completely until an awesome tea friend of mine opened my eyes to the realization that all of Teavana is the epitome of evil.

I have had a couple of different matcha’s since that tragedy, but none as smooth as this. There is no grainy texture to this matcha, even after getting pretty darn close to the bottom of the bowl. It feels like drinking tea and not like chewing on sandy seawater.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C
Cofftea

Their organic has a thicker mouth feel, but it’s also very smooth. Thanks for the warning about Teavana’s. I was wondering about theirs.

Janefan

Sadly, Teavana’s matcha is the only one I’ve had (that and the Lupicia flavored/sweetened ones). And I think it’s ok, having nothing to compare it to. (Probably like a Lipton drinker who thinks it’s fine until they try "real tea) So, I expect to be blown away by the DoMatcha Ceremonial Grade that is patiently waiting for me to finish the Teavana stuff…

Cofftea

I hope you have better luck than I did Janefan.

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90
drank Matcha Kaze by Den's Tea
31 tasting notes

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90
drank Matcha Kaze by Den's Tea
31 tasting notes

Delicious! With each sip I get a touch of sweetness on the tip of my tongue, then a few seconds later I can feel the slight tingling of bitterness on the back of my tongue and throat. The overall flavor is amazing – grassy, vegetal, frickin’ awesome. It is more mellow than I thought it would be… but maybe I screwed up the ratio of matcha to water. After I finished the bowl, my mouth is a little dry, though.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C
Bethany

Alright, I’m sold on this stuff. I’m gonna do a Den’s Tea order this week!

IdentiTEA

Awesome! I can’t wait to read your notes on it.

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70
drank Matcha Kaze by Den's Tea
10 tasting notes

I had to correct the brewing instructions on here. 2 scoops at 16oz of water?! that’s almost 3x the suggested amount of water, even for a usucha. I seriously doubt that would make a pleasant matcha.

I typically do 2 scoops from my chashaku to 1/3rd cup(2.6oz/80ml) of 175F water. Den recommends only 1 scoop for that amount(Usucha is typically more water/less scoops, while koicha is more scoops/less water). Definitely use a sifter on this matcha, it tends to clump very easily, resulting in an over-powering grassy-bitterness when mixed with water if not sifted.

Likely due to my quantity of scoop, I find that it froths very easily (using a chasen, not a frother) – Not a bad thing, quite good if anything. The matcha “powder” colour is an almost vibrant green, suggesting minimal oxidation exposure (usually indicative of quality – the higher the oxidation (darker the shade of green), the lower the quality and more bitter. The more vibrant-neon green, is the less oxidized, and the higher the quality/taste). The sweet notes is minimal at best, but the bitterness is not high as some lower end bulk-matcha company stuff you get out there from tea-chains or supermarkets. I’ve had much better matcha(koicha), but the price more than makes up for its shortcomings, for your every-day drinker. Not ideally suited for desert-drinks. Den sells a separate “ingredient-grade” matcha for that, it’ll be easier on your wallet to buy that instead.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C

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98
drank Gyokuro Kin by Den's Tea
31 tasting notes

Oh my good golly gosh! This tea is fantastic. It is a lot sweeter than I thought it would be. The grassy/vegetal flavor just glides across my tongue. Absolutely no bitterness, but just a hint of astringency.

The color of this tea is a beautiful bright green. It makes me impatient for spring to arrive…

I think I am going to cheat on my buddy, Sencha, and hangout more with Gyokuro today.

Preparation
150 °F / 65 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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100
drank Organic Matcha by Den's Tea
865 tasting notes

CRAP! I found almost a half of a container of this that’s a year old! I must have gotten distracted w/ Frank’s matchas or something. Dispite the nose dive in color, this is actually still pretty good.

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100
drank Organic Matcha by Den's Tea
865 tasting notes

I had quite a spicy dinner so I decided to put my daily matcha in some yogurt. I didn’t have vanilla so I went w/ Boston Cream Pie. The flavor of the yogurt was stronger than expected and some spoonfuls had more matcha flavor than others. Not too bad though.

LiberTEAS

Have you tried their Miyabi Matcha? I ordered some of this… I think I may just have to make some for my next cuppa!

Cofftea

No, the only other Den’s matcha I’ve tried is Kaze. Very good.

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100
drank Organic Matcha by Den's Tea
865 tasting notes

1 scoop/3oz water. Getting to the bottom of the canister so I think I didn’t get as much on my scoop today- it tastes a bit weak.

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C

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