Yamamotoyama

Recent Tasting Notes

81
drank Hojicha by Yamamotoyama
14 tasting notes

Although it doesn’t say on the package, I can tell by looking at it that it is bancha. Sure, it may be the lowest grade of Japanese green, but I think it is ideal for Hojicha. You wouldn’t want to waste a good sencha or, heaven forbid, a gyokuro, on this type of process. Because of it’s low-caffeine content, I drink it in the late evening without any side effects. Today, I steeped the tea three times in my gaiwan before calling it quits.

Flavors: Brown Toast, Cedar, Dry Grass, Roasted Barley

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 5 g

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85
drank Jasmine Tea by Yamamotoyama
2 tasting notes

Jasmine Tea is my favorite tea of all because it was the first of all tea I had ever had with my grandmother when I was 5 years old. She had given me the love of tea.

I first purchased Yamamotoyama Jasmine tea at Koreana Plaza now known as KP Asian Market in Oakland, CA (they have a variety of affordable teas $1.79 and up). First of all, I really like the box and packaging (starting to like the color pink too). Each tea pouch is individually sealed in an aluminum/paper pack (the first I have seen and pretty innovative, maybe just to me). It gives that sort of easy feeling when you want to carry on the go and I usually do. Of course, you can recycle the box but I’d like to keep it.

Usually, how strong you want your tea to taste weighs heavy on this brand. It can turn out pretty strong for just a single tea bag. I am the kind of person who likes strong fragrant smell and taste so I usually steep it for maybe 4 to 5 minutes but according to the package, 1 to 3 minutes is about right or as they say, “to desired taste”.

What else can I say about it? It’s super fragrant in taste and smell so it’s best to follow the box and steep 1 to 3 minutes if it’s your first jasmine green tea (I had some in the past that are way weaker in taste and smell). You can order from the website: http://www.yamamotoyama.com

Flavors: Flowers, Jasmine

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec 2 g 8 OZ / 236 ML

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One of my favorite frugal morning cups – a regular purchase for me at Mitsuwa (though I’m really there for the ramen at Santouka of course).

Brewed in an Indian made Korean style infuser cup.

Dry, I find Yamamotoyama to produce one of the more aromatic Genmaichas I’ve had – though by no means complex, the toasted rice and grassy tea (Bancha?) synergize with all the sweet potency you could desire.

Spring Bud-green liquor holds a few dozen microscopic leaves that dance along the eddies of heat before descending to rest uneasily on the bottom of the cup.

Dusty, grainy, and faintly grassy in the nose. Simple, earthy, easy-drinking, lightly toasted, with no real vegetal notes or bitterness as long as you don’t stew it. Hints of peanut husks. Delicate yet faintly creamy mouth-feel.

Second and third steep with boiling water for 30 seconds and 1 minute respectively.

Satisfying and sufficiently energizing to be a “daily drinker” if you were so inclined.

Preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 0 min, 30 sec 3 g 6 OZ / 177 ML

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drank Genmai Cha by Yamamotoyama
532 tasting notes

Sipdown!

Nothing too special about this one – brothy, a tad salty-smelling, good for The Cold That Won’t Quit.

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drank Genmai Cha by Yamamotoyama
532 tasting notes

This is a very strong-tasting genmaicha, and I’m not sure how I feel about it. Very umami, somewhat astringent, really brothy.

I may have oversteeped this, though – the directions I was given said 1 tbsp for 30 seconds to 1 minute at 176-194F. I did it for 1 minute at 177F. I’m really having trouble finding a genmaicha I like, it seems.

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72
drank Oolong Tea by Yamamotoyama
8 tasting notes

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Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 0 sec 1 tsp 10 OZ / 300 ML

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Like bancha, hoji-cha has a completely different personality and taste from sencha. At one point I was somewhat addicted to this tea, but I have not consumed any in a long time. Happily, in my recently discovered cache, I found a full, hermetically sealed bag of this tea, in addition to the remains of another bag. This tea is roasted (and looks like little pieces of dried wood!), so I decided to brew up the remains since roasted tea generally holds up better over time than unroasted.

The result was good. The liquor is a dark apricot color and the flavor is exactly as I recall hoji-cha having been. I’ll report back once I’ve opened the other bag, which should produce an even better pot.

This tea is very inexpensive (hoji—cha in general, but also this brand in particular), yet the flavor is unique and appealing to me. It’s not that I like everything, mind you. I dislike the taste of barley tea, for example. People who are expecting something along the lines of sencha or another green green tea may be disappointed with this beverage, as it bears little resemblance to anything but itself!

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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84
drank Sencha by Yamamotoyama
1174 tasting notes

This “everyday” sencha from Yamamotoyama is an excellent example of why I love Japanese products. Supposedly this is the analogue to Lipton in Japan, where people drink sencha many times each day—and tea is much more frequently imbibed than coffee. So one might surmise that the flavor would be mediocre. Not so! It’s a very decent quality sencha, and the price is ridiculously low. I have consumed my share of these bags over the years, but when the Japanese grocery close to my former place of residence closed down, I pretty much moved on.

While moving, I discovered a secret cache of a Japanese tea, including this one, and though it is old (albeit unopened and stored in a tin box far from heat and light), it still tastes very good and brews up a delightful greenish gold. I’ll be plowing through this bag in no time, and now that a huge megaplex Asian market has opened up within walking distance of my new place, I’m sure that I’ll be exploring the higher grades from this brand as well—in addition to some more obscure offerings in the tea aisle—which is vast!

I suspect that the naysayers are not following the prescribed instructions (which I added to the profile). Note that Yamamotoyama indicates that a tablespoon (not a teaspoon) should be used for 200ml of water. Also: a very short steep is key to success with this tea. Finally, there are some small particles amongst the leaves, so you need to use a very fine-gauged sieve or filter to remove them in order to avoid bitterness.


second infusion: very good!


third infusion: still good! now bright yellow.

Preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 1 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML
carol who

Yeah for local tea! It has its good points – fun, try new things, no shipping :) and the bad – too available, spend all the money on tea and not food! :(

sherapop

So true, carol who! I’ve been known to spend the bulk of my time and money during an alleged “grocery run” on tea! I’ve already been ogling the selection at this new megaplex, which appears to be run by Koreans, but they have covered all of the Asian tea bases… watch out!!!!

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80
drank Genmai Cha by Yamamotoyama
235 tasting notes

I purchased this at the PAT Asian market yesterday while at the vet (they are right near each other). I wanted to try a different Genmai cha . I looked for a package that didn’t have clear cellophane to let the light in thinking that if the company did that, it’s going to be better quality. This one was about $5 for 200g. When I checked out the brew times I could see there were decent brew temperatures too.
I checked the reviews first before having it and was disappointed it had some bad reviews. That was because there are two Genmai cha’s on Steepster. One with a hyphen and then this one. This is the one I’ve got. Matches the package.
Opened up I could see it was a nice sencha not a green tea. Some of the rice was popped too. I haven’t had a lot of genmaicha so far but I think that’s a good sign it’s a decent quality.
Brewed at 190F for 30 sec. This one has a deep grassy vegetal taste from the sencha along with the toasty rice. A nice balance. Some genmaicha’s are more toasty rice but I didn’t get that from this one. There seems to be a lot less caffeine than the other genmaicha I have too.

Preparation
190 °F / 87 °C 0 min, 30 sec 1 tsp 0 OZ / 8 ML

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80
drank Genmai Cha by Yamamotoyama
235 tasting notes

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80
drank Genmai Cha by Yamamotoyama
235 tasting notes

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42

This tea is interesting.. I bought it on a whim at an asian market today and I’m glad I’ve tried it. I’m not sure I’ll drink it again. It’s a very savory tea. When it steeps it smells exactly like roasted rice and it tastes like it too. I don’t get a lot of green tea flavors out of it.

Amanda 'SoggyEnderman' Wilson

Back when I drank primarily tea bags, this was one of my favorites. I haven’t had it in forever though, so who knows if I would still like it.

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93

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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93

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Preparation
3 min, 15 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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93

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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93

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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93

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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93

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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93

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec

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94
drank Jasmine Tea by Yamamotoyama
298 tasting notes

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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94
drank Jasmine Tea by Yamamotoyama
298 tasting notes

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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94
drank Jasmine Tea by Yamamotoyama
298 tasting notes

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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94
drank Jasmine Tea by Yamamotoyama
298 tasting notes

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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94
drank Jasmine Tea by Yamamotoyama
298 tasting notes

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Preparation
3 min, 0 sec 12 OZ / 354 ML

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