Red Leaf Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

69

From my latest RLT order;

I picked up a 30g size at distinctive level flavouring because I’ve found that’s what I enjoy most of my matcha at. I don’t actually know why I chose apricot though; I want to try a new fruit flavor, and I guess because this doesn’t have many reviews it seemed like an interesting gamble. The smell of the dry matcha was… Concerning.

There’s a very fake/artificial presence to it and my immediate thought was “Oh no, distinctive was definitely too strong of a flavour!”. It’s not really an uncommon thing for RLT fruit based flavours to taste very chemical, especially at the higher flavour levels. And, I also had no idea what sort of prep method would be the best one to use here. Ultimately I went with cold milk in the hope that it’d maybe mute the flavour of the matcha a little bit and taste creamy; I’ve had some really good creamy apricot teas so I know that flavour pairing can taste great is executed well.

Honestly; it’s not as bad as I’d have expected just based on the smell of the dry matcha. It doesn’t taste natural but it’s not overly artificial or chemical tasting either and I’m going to consider that a win! However, even though it’s not terrible there is something off about this. Fruity milk in general is so hit or miss though. If it was creamier, with perhaps some vanilla added in I think it could work splendidly but just plain milk? No.

Next time I make this I’m going to try a different prep method; hot water, making added in to cake or cookie mix? I sense there’s promise here – I just have to find the way to best utilize this flavour of matcha.

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96

I did not participate in the matcha madness taste test, but I read lots of results, so don’t read on if you’re still trying not to be spoiled.

Between their name your price opportunity, and their blind matcha taste test, Red Leaf has been successful in making me their customer. After everyone’s thorough taste test reviews, I had to give their Deluxe Matcha a try. It has been on sale for a while now, at $20 a pound! I’d love to take advantage of that deal but, I worry that I just won’t drink that much matcha before it starts to go stale. (Or maybe I would, but who knows, I like to have variety in my my matcha). So far, the package sizing is my one complaint; I wish there was a medium size (say 40g or 3oz) The sample size can’t be resealed and the full pound bag is too much for me at the moment.

Other than that, this is a fantastic matcha, especially for the price. I have been drinking it iced, without milk. It is smooth, vibrant, fragrant. I haven’t had any problems mixing it together or frothing it up. This is the first matcha I’ve had in recent memory that tastes so specifically different from other matchas, rather than varying tones of green grass flavors (though Red Leaf’s Emperor Matcha is out of this world and distinct in a different, more delicate way).

This matcha is stunningly floral, almost as if it were a jasmine-flavored matcha. It is sweet in a natural-tasting way and gently vegetal, with no bitterness or savory/seaweed flavors. The mouthfeel is full and present, even made with water it does not feel thin or plain. If you have ever been skeptical of matcha or want to like it but have always ended up with something too sour or bitter, I highly encourage you to try this one. The smell and taste is like a spring day, not too girly or perfumey, but amazingly fresh and delicious. A powerful iced tea for this summer season and an amazing all-around matcha.

Flavors: Floral, Flowers, Grass, Green, Honey, Jasmine, Vegetal

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drank Almond Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
338 tasting notes

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78

Finally cracking into the larger sizes of matcha I got in my last order instead of the sampler; I thought this “mini vacation” would be a good excuse to bring a little with me and finally give one a try.

This is one of a couple that I’ve never tried before that I got in a larger size; I really like pistachio and I had enough faith that I’ve tried enough of RLT’s matcha to know what flavour works best for me and order appropriately. So that said this is the basic grade matcha (because it’s more than likely going to get used up in milk so I’m not springing for something higher quality) but the distinctive level of flavouring.

Of course, I don’t have a chawan or chawask at my Dad’s house and you can only take so much teaware with you on a three day trip so I made this one the same way I used way back when; in a cup with a fork. I’d forgotten just how poorly that whisks everything up; but it did the trick well enough.

It tasted so good! Very distinctly pistachio, and really creamy! Growing up, I absolutely adored pistachio pudding; I remember when they sold it in those premixed pudding cups. My little chubby heart shattered when they stopped selling it that way. I guess it wasn’t a popular enough flavour? You can still buy the boxes to mix up yourself but it’s not the same – I can never make it the right consistency. Point is, that’s what the flavour reminds me of. Not much nuance or depth to it, but it’s very enjoyable.

Also; I think this matcha will have a better “share-ability” factor because pistachio is supposed to be green. Every time I try to share matcha with a coworker they get freaked out because of the colour. “It’s strawberry? Uhh, but Strawberry shouldn’t look green…”

It’s been a while since I did a swap and I’d love to try more straight teas or teas from companies I order from less frequently/have never ordered from so if we follow each other on Steepster and you’re interested in doing a swap please send me a message!

OMGsrsly

That sounds good. I loved pistachio pudding but rarely got it as a kid. I might have to buy a packet and revisit it. :)

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85
drank Matsuri Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
36 tasting notes

I’ve historically not been the biggest fan of Matcha and have pretty much shied away from trying it further. I used a gift certificate for this one though, I figured why not? And I have to say I’m glad I did!

I do still prefer other kinds of tea over Matcha, but I’m no longer fully counting it out of my rotation. This matcha definitely has a pleasant sweetness to it that you can bring out even further with the smallest dab of honey. You definitely taste the green grassyness that matcha, and indeed green tea, are known for as well but they aren’t over powering like some out there. Additionally plenty of Matcha’s have more of a steamed vegetable taste and this one thankfully DOES NOT. There is a very slight bitterness when you first sip but then it disappears, which is another huge bonus for this Matcha.

Please note I used the traditional bamboo whisk method for preparation and used two bamboo scoops of matcha for 8oz of water [I don’t like it too strong ;-) ]

Flavors: Sweet, warm grass

Preparation
8 OZ / 236 ML

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Found this in my sample drawer last night while I was inventorying and organizing for this weekend’s get together. I don’t yet have something to shake matcha in nor do I have the bowl and whisk. Latte it is.
I’m getting a sort of powdery feel in the back of my mouth on the first few sips of this, not pleasant. Maybe I need less matcha? I put in 3 tsp like usual. Stirring doesn’t take away this sensation. I don’t know what I did but I don’t think I will be able to finish drinking this before I leave for work :/

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74

Sipdown (119)!

Finished this one off cold shaken in a timolino of water like I’ve done with the other flavors from RLT’s sampler – guess I’ve kind of set myself up to do this sampler with the first tasting in cashew milk and the second in water.

I definitely liked this better in water, which was interesting to me because I liked the cashew milk version a whole lot too. It lost a great deal of the creaminess/melted ice cream flavor I got to experience trying it that way but it gained a much more clear, focused flavour instead – butterscotch candies, exactly like displayed in the picture for this matcha.

I used to call those Grandma candies, ‘cause my grandma kept a tin of them and scotch mints on the front dash of her van. They were always scalding hot and partially melted from sitting in the open sun all day, and the wrappers were a bitch to take off but they tasted so good. I’ve been thinking about those summers I spent with my Grandma in Eyebrow a lot lately; whether it’d be a realistic idea to move there…

It’s a very quaint village community, mostly retired seniors. The houses there sell for like $200.00 among residents, not sure what utilities would ring in at every month. Finding a job would likely be pretty hard; there are only two or three local businesses (one is owned by my Aunt) so I don’t really know how I’d make an income – though my expenses would be a lot lighter than they are now. Hell, I don’t even know if most of the houses there have progressed past dial-up internet: it’s actually been years since I’ve gone to visit.

I just know that it makes me happy there; it’s such a quiet, peaceful place. It’d be a great place to finish up class though, if the internet thing worked out. I don’t know if I could survive without the internet. For realsies. It’s nice to think about, anyway…

Ubacat

There’s always lots of work for Home/Medical care worker for seniors.
Yes, know what you mean about those areas being peaceful. Life in general is just too fast with too much to do all the time.

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74

This one has been on my personal wishlist for a while and I was very excited to get to try it recently. Like the others from the sampler, I made it in cashew milk.

The dry matcha smells very strongly of butterscotch; it reminds me of Butter Ripple Schnapps, which is a favourite drink of mine. It’s a little grassy too from the matcha itself.

This was very delightful; the butterscotch flavor really comes through and creates a sugary sweet drink that reminds me of melted down Butterscotch Ripple ice cream; it’s not nearly as boozy anymore so it’s reminding me less of Butter Ripple Schnapps. The mild nuttiness of the cashew milk compliments the sweetness very well also, and there’s a gentle vegetal note from the matcha itself – it’s not as grassy as the dry leaf smelled but it is present.

This one was very interesting and tasty and I’m really happy I finally got to try it. I imagine it would also work wonderfully in a hot latte as well – butterscotch is a very adaptable flavor. So far, this is my favourite of the matchas from this sampler that I’ve tried.

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72

Sipdown (121)!

Finished off the last of my sample of this blend just in a timolino shaken into some cold water; the flavor didn’t differ drastically from the cashew milk version apart from the obvious absence of nuttier notes and a thinner mouthfeel. It’s still very rich and more of a iced coffee/latte type drink than a cup of more traditional java.

I’ve spent all day binge watching episodes of Wil Wheaton/Felicia Day’s internet series tabletop – there are so many games I want to pick up now, either as a Father’s Day present for my Dad (I’m going up on the 28th to 30th to visit and see their new house in Regina so I’ve got time to get my Father’s day present) or a birthday present for my brother who turned 17 on the 17th.

Someone needs to kick me off their site though; I have to do cuppings for at least two of my tea samples for class today otherwise I’m gonna be hella overwhelmed on Tuesday when I finish the cuppings off…

Kristal

My best friend has bought cashew milk from the local farmer’s market. I’ve tried two kinds that she’s bought: one flavoured with vanilla bean and the other one with cacao. The vanilla had a bit of a funny aftertaste but the cacao one was quite yummy :).

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72

I’m not a coffee person so on the rare occasion that I do decide I want to partake in some java I usually go for actual coffee, not coffee flavored tea. To me those two things are separate, and for a reason. However, I still couldn’t resist trying this flavour – I had this gut feeling that it was going to be done well.

Like the previous matcha from this sampler, I made this in cashew milk. It mixed up such a bright, cheery green too and the smell was definitely freshly brewed coffee; quite roasty.

I was surprised by just how strong and sweet this one is; and I know that sweet kick isn’t from the cashew milk either since it’s unsweetened – but with the level of rich sugaryness it made me think I was drinking more of a Iced Coffee/ Iced Cappuccino type drink like you can get from Starbucks or Tim Hortons or whatever your coffee shop of choice is. At the same time, though it was quite sweet, it maintained a nice level of roast in the flavor and had some surprising caramel notes. And of course, from the milk, there was a faint nuttyness that worked really well with the coffee flavor. It probably only made the idea of drinking some sort of fancy sweet coffee drink stronger, if I’m being honest.

I wouldn’t buy this one again if I’m being honest; I just don’t do coffee – but it was surprisingly more nuanced than anticipated and like my gut told me it was in fact well done. So I do recommend trying it if coffee and sweet coffee drinks are your thing.

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96
drank Deluxe Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
441 tasting notes

The name has it right right! If there ever was a deluxe matcha this is it!Thank you Red Leaf for supplying samples for our Matcha TTB. I will definitely be buying more of this. It’s like drinking a good green tea. Grassy notes. Slightly floral. A bit of bitterness. All complimented by almond milk but the almond milk makes sure to stay out of the way and let the loveliness of this matcha take over. Nom nom nom. I really want to try this out the traditional way!

Flavors: Floral, Grass

Preparation
1 tsp

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99
drank French Noir by Red Leaf Tea
1 tasting notes

No notes yet. Add one?

Flavors: Fruit Tree Flowers

Preparation
200 °F / 93 °C 4 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 7 OZ / 200 ML

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70

Sipdown (123)!

Finished this one off hot in plain water yesterday at work; I worked a 3-11 shift – the first I’ve done in weeks. I actually love working evenings/late nights – but because I’ve got a very open availability I get scheduled all over the place and lately I’ve been doing 9-5 shifts; definitely not my favorite thing.

I think this was marginally better hot/in water – while it still tasted very floral, especially given this is cranberry matcha, it was also much less artificial/perfumey tasting. I definitely continued to get an “unsweetened cranberry juice” vibe from this one. I’d totally drink it again; but I can’t see myself actually ordering more. There are so many other flavors that appeal to me more.

Fjellrev

I always preferred evening shifts when I worked in retail too. NOT a morning person!

And good to know that this isn’t as artificial. I’ve kind of gotten scared away by their fruit flavours after trying a few and finding them to be way too artificial.

Kristal

Interesting- as much as I am not a morning person, I personally prefer the early shifts because then I have the rest of the day to myself. But then again when I was in high school and early college I always preferred afternoon/ evening shifts because back then I would stay in bed until I had 10 minutes until I had to leave (I’m bad, I know). To each their own, I guess!

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70

I’ve never really thought of cranberry as a flavour that I needed to experience as matcha; however when I saw it as one of the options for the sampler I knew I had to try it out. Cranberry is a consistent favourite flavour of mine in teas. Opening up the sample packet, it definitely smells pretty strongly of cranberry – like an unsweetened cranberry juice.

I prepared 1/2 tsp. of the matcha in my chawan, but with cold cashew milk instead of regular milk or water. The cashew milk doesn’t froth very well, but it gets very thick and it takes a long time for the matcha to resettle and separate.

This definitely nails cranberry right on the head, but with a very floral and perfume like component. I think this is in part from the matcha itself, but also from the flavoring used. Sometimes Red Leaf Tea’s fruit blends have a tendency to taste somewhat chemical or artificial and I think that’s happening a little bit here. While I don’t mind the floral notes, the “perfume” is very fake tasting and detracts just a little from the overall flavor. I would absolutely be nervous trying this one as a flavor level like “Robust”. I can’t even imagine what it would be like at the “There’s matcha in there!?” level – probably bad.

It is weird experiencing the flavor cold and paired with the light flavor of cashew (from the milk) but in a pleasant way. Harney & Sons has a blend called Boston which is the pairing of cranberry and almond, and the pairing of flavors here reminds me of that tea. This aspect of the matcha works well for me; though obviously not everyone is going to have access to cashew milk to try it this way.

I think I’ll have fun tinkering around with this blend; there’s room for improvement for sure, but if you like the taste of cranberry it’s absolutely worth giving this one a shot!

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90
drank Panettone Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
202 tasting notes

Long time no see, Steepster! I’ve been hard at work on a few projects, and have thusly blocked all fun sites from my computer! Yes, ALL. So no Steepster or Chatzy and I miss you all terribly, hopefully I’ll be back soon :)

Anyway… long days of work need lots of caffeine, and I’ve been getting it mainly in the form of cold matcha (soy) lattes. Protein and caffeine, what else do you need? I’ve ordered quite a few flavors from Red Leaf and found I’m not a fan of their fruity flavors, but their dessert ones are always quite nice. So I was a bit unsure about this one since Stephanie mentioned it tasted more like the candied citrus found in panettone, rather than the cake. Well, she was right! Total candid orange peel taste, and it’s divine. Absolutely one of my favorite Red Leaf flavors. Not artificial at all like I find most of their other fruit flavors. This is spot-on and I’m loving it. I’ve tried mixing it with French Butter Cookie and Bavarian Cream matchas to help give some of that pasty flavor, and they’ve both been wonderful. This is definitely a reorder for me. Probably in the large size.

Mine was distinctive flavoring with their standard matcha.

Flavors: Citrus Zest, Orange Zest

Preparation
Iced 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Marzipan

We thought maybe we made you mad in chat. Glad to see you!

kieblera5

cookies!

Stephanie

Yay! Glad you liked this one as much as I did :D I will have to mix it with Bavarian Cream next time as well

cookies

Hi!
Thanks for the review of the matcha, Stephaine. I’d never have tried it otherwise!

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83
drank Coconut Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1438 tasting notes

This stuff smells like heaven!! from the box yet again.
I often think and even say I don’t like coconut but then I smell a pure sweet young coconut scent and remember that I do adore some coconut. Happy sighs.
It’s very creamy on it’s own. Just the way I love it! :D
I’m not sure what level of flavouring this is but I do wish it was a bit less. I can’t really taste the matcha.

Also, it looks like I am the first person to review this in almost a year?!

Roswell Strange

Technically my last note for this one was two months ago :P

Indigobloom

Oh! haha I only briefly perused the notes. Looks like I forgot to expand the further notes sections.

Kirkoneill1988

i shall try this someday

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drank Almond Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
431 tasting notes

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94

Thank you Red Leaf for giving me a chance to name my own price and try an amazing matcha. Due to my matcha novice nature and the price of high quality matchas, I have only tried some of the more “smoothie grade” level of matchas. This was a stunning departure from those teas. First, right out of the pouch, I noticed the Emperor’s Matcha was much finer, smoother, velvety in texture than other matchas I had tried. It was also a much richer color. I used my usual proportions of tea and water, knowing it might be too strong, but though I would try it anyway. I drank this hot after being whisked in a bowl. It frothed up nicely and despite my lack of sifter, it blended in generally smoothly. The flavor of this tea is the usual distinctly vegetal matcha green flavors; this was not too overpowering nor was it sour or bitter. The matchas I had been trying lately were too sweet with flavoring, or just sort of generally green in flavor, sort of forward and vegetable-sour. Emperor’s Matcha was exceedingly smooth in look, feel, and taste. This isn’t “creamy” in a dessert way, but it is gently, naturally sweet and mellow, sort of like vanilla grass in the best way possible. No need for milk or sweetener, this is my new favorite pure matcha. Certainly an inspiration. Thanks again Red Leaf Tea!

Flavors: Creamy, Grass, Green, Smooth, Vanilla, Vegetal

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80

I just got home from an epic adventure, and by epic adventure I mean I went to Target! So, fun story, I have special needs when it comes to body care products, specifically I need ones without aloe because of my stupid allergy. EVERYTHING HAS ALOE, so the hunt for specific aloe free products is a pain. I need special shampoo, the selenium kind for my sebhorrheic dermatitis, and half of the blasted things have aloe, but you know in hair and skin care I kinda get it. What I do not get is why wipes have aloe, I spent a good 20 minutes checking and double checking all the wipe brands till I found an aloe free one…and you can bet I bought extra refills. I really do feel like I am on an epic quest whenever I have to buy body care stuff.

So, it is Monday, meaning it is MATCHA TIME! Woo! Today we are taking a look at Red Leaf Tea’s Rose Matcha, from their flavored Matcha line. This one is made from basic grade (classic) delicate flavor and regular non-organic Matcha. They have other flavor and grade options, and one day I would love to try the different flavors with a higher grade, but I am super cheap, so for now this is what we got. The aroma is super rosy, which is good, because I love roses in my food. It borders between rose perfume and a full bloom rose garden, mix in the fresh vegetation and grassiness and you have a Matcha that smells like summer in an English garden, memories of childhood tea parties in a rose garden while wearing Victorian dresses pop into my head.

I decided to pull out my tiny Chawan to have this traditionally first. Whisking it was a bit of a pain, but I did get a bit of a froth after a while. The color is not the prettiest, but since it is basic grade that is not too surprising. The taste is not too bad, it is a touch bitter like kale, but after an initial hint of bitterness it explodes into oddly fairly mellow rose. Let me explain, the rose takes over as the main taste and it is very distinct, but it is not like taking a drink of rose perfume. The rose lingers for quite a while as an aftertaste.

Next is the obvious latte, the real way flavored Matcha shines. I find that mixing a bit with water making a paste and then mixing with milk and if needed sugar makes for a much easier blend, especially if you do not feel like breaking out the hand mixer (I am lazy) Also I apologize for the awful cup, I just today decided to get a nice clear glass one to make it prettier. The taste reminds me of one of my favorite drinks, rose milk, an Indian drink mixing Rooh Afza Rose Syrup and milk, it was a delicious summer favorite that I miss drinking (I ran out of the syrup and never replaced it) basically it is roses and milk, what makes it different from the Indian drink is it has a grassy undertone and is not as sweet (could of changed that if I wanted to, but I liked it not so sweet) and with a slightly nutty finish. The rose lingers in the back of the mouth and in the nose for quite a while, and it has a slight dryness at the finish. I am curious to see how these would be baked into cookies with some saffron and cardamon, like a Matcha Falooda blend!

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2015/06/red-leaf-tea-rose-matcha-matcha-monday.html

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drank Deluxe Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
1546 tasting notes

I randomly grabbed this one out of the leftovers from the head to head blind taste test. When I realized which one I had grabbed I got a little excited. This is good stuff.

I mixed about 1 heaping tsp of powder and some Splenda with a couple ounces of milk and whipped it with a spoon. I used a double walled tumbler like they sell at Starbucks for frappes. It is tall and narrow so the tea foams up very easily even with a spoon. The powder all mixes in pretty easily even in cold milk.

Then I grabbed a half cup of crushed ice, ran it through the shaver and added it to the tumbler. I have Xantham gum to thicken it but didn’t add it today. Then I filled the tumbler with milk and stirred.

The color is nicely dark green like a Starbucks frappe. That’s where the similarity ends. When I was mixing this I thought it had a black tea aroma. As I taste, it is very much floral like an Alishan oolong. The sweetener is not really necessary as this is nicely sweet on its own. Seemed very smooth with no grit. The only thing I found to complain about is it disappeared long before I was ready.

This was my top rated pick from the test, easily blowing away the competition.

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100
drank Deluxe Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
202 tasting notes

After reading all of the rave reviews of this matcha I had to give it a try. So good call with that experiment, Red Leaf! It definitely worked on me :) I was specifically interested in the floral notes Lion promised in his review. I do love matcha, but some of them can be very vegetal which I don’t love, so floral sounded like a nice option.

So I decided to just go for the full pound option thinking I could toss it in smoothies or baked goods if I didn’t love it. Thankfully I do! It is truly as delicious as the reviews stated. Not bitter in the least and intensely floral, like a concentrated high mountain oolong. It is beautiful shaken in water (a way I generally don’t like matcha) and so so sooo good as a latte. I can’t get enough of it. I do have to say I’m almost convinced it has to be a powdered oolong though, right? I can’t think of any greens (even Chinese greens) that have such intense floral notes.

Admittedly I was unsure of whether to give it 100 or not. On one hand it is absolutely divine! But there are a few cons. Besides the small sample size, it is only available in a 1lb non-resealable bag. And because the floral notes are so strong it really clashes with any syrups I may want to flavor it with. While those are both kind of big issues for me, overall the tea is so tasty I decided to give it the full 100 it deserved. I definitely recommend picking up a sample size if it sounds like something you’d be interested in.

Flavors: Flowers, Green

Preparation
Iced
K S

I haven’t opened my one pound bag yet. I didn’t notice it was not resealable. Good to know in advance so I can make plans. For a solid mixer matcha, Red Leaf Teas starter matcha is equally impressive to this one, quality wise, without the awesome floral notes.

Marzipan

RLT refused to give me the reward for my review, saying it wasn’t good enough. Lost a customer in me.

Skysamurai

!!! I totally agree it tastes like an oolong!!!

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57

Red Leaf how do you make it smell so good?! The color of the matcha tells me its a bit of a lower grade. Going to do my usual where I’ll mix the matcha with some hot water while the almond milk is warming. Then froth the almond milk while it mixes into the matcha. And i think i broke my frother. Arg. Anyway.

First sip all foam. Not my best foam. I want to really like this but thus far it’s just meh. It tastes a bit too artificial. Not bad just not what I thought. Might taste amazing in a drink or smoothie though.

Red Leaf Tea

Please note that color of flavored matcha teas changes when mixed with natural flavor. There seems to be a reaction of some sort that affects the color of the final product to more yellow-green. At this point it can only be changed if we start using artificial flavor, which will not happen anytime soon.

Skysamurai

AH ha! That is good to know! And thank you for not using artificial flavor. That is why I love buying your matcha! Don’t worry even if I dont like a flavor I will still remain a fan =]

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94

Back from my little break only to discover, it is Memorial Day, huh, time really seems to fly! Memorial Day to many is the official start of summer, to me the start has always been ‘when it is warm enough to swim in mountain creeks’ so some years in Pennsylvania did not have a summer. It is a beautiful day for a holiday (even if the lack of mail will throw my whole week off) and Ben and I spent it mostly painting, lounging, and partaking of a few fancy sales. I hit the thrift and got a new dress and a pair of really beautiful cups (one is Japanese and the other is possibly Korean celadon, yay for half off sales) and went to Michael’s for new paint brushes, because I always need more.

Today marks the first ever Matcha Monday! A showcase of all things Matcha, usually just straight up Matcha but possible also food and of course various lattes. The first one to be showcased is Red Leaf Tea’s Manju Matcha, they are currently doing this neat promotion where you pay what you want for, a good old Name Your Own Price kinda thing, which is pretty cool. Manju Matcha is from glorious Shizuoka Prefecture, home to Fujiyama and famous for its teas. For a fun bit of trivia, Manju is a Japanese sweet, similar to Mochi, and often filled and made with Matcha. The color of this Matcha is lovely, I do not feel my photography does it justice, it is the vibrant green of spring growth, like someone distilled the season into a fine powder. The aroma of the Matcha is very sweet, almost fruity (like bananas, but very faint, I kept thinking I was just imagining things) with strong notes of sweetgrass, freshly mown hay, a touch of nuttiness and a tiny hint of distant flowers.

After sifting and then whisking the Matcha, the fruity notes have vanished, what is left is sweet hay, sweetgrass, a bit of robust grassiness, and a finish of distant flowers. It is pleasantly sweet to the nose.

Ok, tasting time! I did my first session with this Usucha or thin style, this is the more familiar whisked into a foam style that Matcha is well known for. It is both sweet and brisk, with a thick and smooth mouthfeel. It starts out sweet like sweetgrass, hay, and a touch of flower nectar. The taste then transitions to slightly bitter green like a blend of spinach and kale, adding a bit of an umami element to the Matcha. The finish moves around to sweet again with a blend of honey and flowers. It is a really good Matcha for everyday drinking, blending sweetness and umami in a very perfect balance.

I decided to have another session with this Matcha, but this time I went for Koicha or thick style, this is the hardcore stuff, usually only specific teas are reserved for Koicha, usually this Matcha is extremely costly as it is made from older plants and is usually hand picked. Manju Matcha is not really suited for Koicha, but I wanted to experiment, so, why not? The taste is…intense, both intensely umami and intensely bitter. Like having a mouthful of kale, grass, and sauteed spinach. This slowly fades to a gentle sweetness and and aftertaste of distant flowers long after the sipping experience is over. How does it compare to actual Koicha? No idea, I have never had it…way too poor for that stuff!

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2015/05/red-leaf-tea-manju-matcha-matcha-monday.html

Flavors: Bitter, Flowers, Hay, Honey, Kale, Spinach, Sweet, Sweet, warm grass, Umami

Preparation
155 °F / 68 °C

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55
drank Guava Matcha by Red Leaf Tea
286 tasting notes

Matcha TTB

Tried this one as a smoothie with breakfast. It had a lovely tropical aroma, but the taste just didn’t live up to the scent. It didn’t really come across as guava to me, just a generic, slightly artificial fruit flavor. It was okay, but not something I’d reach for again.

Flavors: Artificial, Fruity, Guava, Tropical

Preparation
1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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