Houjicha

Tea type
Green Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
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Caffeine
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Certification
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Edit tea info Last updated by Jason
Average preparation
185 °F / 85 °C 3 min, 15 sec

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6 Tasting Notes View all

  • “I HAVE MISSED EVERYONE. Real life has pretty much put the brakes on my tea adventures. I don't even have time at work to sip anything, and have resorted to drinking pretty awful bagged stuff...” Read full tasting note
    82
    teaplz 186 tasting notes
  • “My love of all things roasted and toasted has lead me to a tin of this tea. The look of the dry “leaves” was a little startling after spending the last year looking at quality tea leaves. Of...” Read full tasting note
    80
    LFINCH 161 tasting notes
  • “Not too too much to say about this tea. Sadly this is my last sample from Samovar.. for now at least :) I've had Adagio's Houjicha and for the most part, I found it to be a little more smokey but...” Read full tasting note
    68
    mattscinto 52 tasting notes
  • “I have had this tea on my shelf for far too long. I've just been too lost in my black teas that I ended up forgetting that I had this in the first place. But here we are, trying it out at...” Read full tasting note
    78
    raffi 53 tasting notes

From Samovar

Origin: Japan

Flavor Profile: Roasted and nutty, malty and dark, woodsy and smooth, rustic and robust.

Tea Story:You would never guess this is a green tea. By toasting the mature growth leaves of Japanese green tea bushes to a woodsy brown, this smooth, straightforward, hearty brew is very warming. Try this classic Japanese tea as a digestiv after dinner for a full, satisfying finish. According to Japanese studies, roasting green tea lowers the caffeine level, and aids in digestion and circulation. 

To extract the malty, nectar notes, be sure to infuse the leaves with boiling water. This tea is a great alternative to black teas if you are looking for that dark, strong taste, but do not want the caffeine of black tea.

Samovarian Poetry: Classic, stout, vigorous & deep. Amber infusion with a roasted nutty quality.

Food Pairing: Chocolate chip cookies, banana bread, and cheesecake- bold flavored deserts that would match the strong roasted aromas and chocolaty, roasted barley flavor of the Hojicha delightfully. Sip the Hojicha alongside Japanese home cooking: tempura, udon or ramen noodle soups, or hearty Yakitori skewered grilled chicken.

About Samovar View company

Samovar's is dedicated to preserving the simplicity and integrity of the tea traditions and inspiring people to practice peace through drinking tea.

6 Tasting Notes

82
186 tasting notes

I HAVE MISSED EVERYONE.

Real life has pretty much put the brakes on my tea adventures. I don’t even have time at work to sip anything, and have resorted to drinking pretty awful bagged stuff (Numi, I’m looking at your fanning-frenzied teas, and they’re not hitting any of the sweet spots).

This weekend, I finally had a bit of room to breathe, so I decided to steep up some Houjicha, a tea from Samovar that I’ve yet to try.

So, let’s get talking about the dry leaves, because there’s some interesting stuff going on here. Houjicha is a roasted green tea, so the leaves are brown and very autumnal. Think dry papery leaves that have fallen off the trees come October. The ones you loved to jump around in as a kid. You’d go out of your way to step on them on the sidewalk. CRUNCH. Yep. Houjicha.

The smell is pretty intriguing as well, because it someone had stuck this under my nose, and asked what sort of tea I was sniffing at, I’d immediately shout out, BLACK. But I’d be wrong. Houjicha smells like a black tea. Not as dark as an assam, but maybe something like an extremely tippy yunnan. Something like that. It’s definitely smelling roasted, but not really in a coffee-like way. In a nutty sort of way. It’s intriguing, but the entire smell is a bit… plain. I don’t want to throw around analogies like Liptons-like, but it was sort of on the same plane of existence as a “default” bagged tea.

So I steeped this one up at a pretty low temperature (my Samovar sample bag said 160-180, so I went down the middle), and my infusion was surprisingly light in color. Amber-lite. Like if you had taken some fall leaves and stewed them down. Maybe I’m going a bit far with this autumn motif, but HAY, on the East Coast it’s getting cold outside! And that means, DRINK MOAR TEA.

The smell, now the smell of the infusion is really, really interesting. Very roasty, and toasty, but also sort of floral? It definitely no longer smells like a Plain Jane black. There is intrigue in the cup.

Sipping it, it’s clear that there’s a green tea under the heavy robes of brown. Because seriously, this tea is sweet. Very, very sweet, in a dark nectar kind of way. Maybe buckwheat honey, but less aggressive and assertive? There’s plenty of candied nuts notes – think hazelnuts that have been roasted and rolled in sugar – and it’s anchored by this sweetness that just lingers in your mouth. The sweetness that is what makes Japanese greens oh so wonderful. And the finish is long. Very long. In between sips, that sugared note just keeps going and going.

As it cools, it gets even sweeter. Seriously tastes like roasted sugar at this point, and it’s pretty damn tasty. It’s still one of the plainer, quieter teas, but I’m sure this would make an excellent session sipper. I’m going to steep a second cup up at boiling (according to Samovar, this invigorates the tea and gives us more malty-black-tea notes), and see what happens.

But yes, I recommend this one. It’s pretty interesting. And I wouldn’t expect anything less from Samovar.

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec
Angrboda

O HAI!! First Takgoti, now you! It’s like early christmas :D

JacquelineM

Hello hello hello!!!

Auggy

Hello again! Nice to see you back! (You’re back right? Not just visiting?)

Stephanie

It’s good to “read” you again! Your notes are always fun to read! :)

sophistre

We’ve somehow regained a takgoti and a teaplz in the same week. It’s like lost tea-soldiers are being drawn back to the motherland somehow. Crazy.

LENA

Yay! Welcome back! I’m still tinkering with this tea to find the best temp/steep time.

teaplz

I’m going to try to pop in every now and then when I drink tea, but I haven’t been drinking that much, since I really don’t have much time on the job to actually relax and make a cup. And if I do, it usually goes unfinished completely, or cold.. or I just have time for a teabag or some ill repute.

THAT BEING SAID, I miss everyone here, and I miss tea! :( Hopefully I can figure something out to be able to drink more right now, but the options are looking pretty bleak. :\

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80
161 tasting notes

My love of all things roasted and toasted has lead me to a tin of this tea. The look of the dry “leaves” was a little startling after spending the last year looking at quality tea leaves. Of course I know what Houjicha consists of…but still, the tea is pretty ratty looking to say the least. The tin contained mostly ragged leaf fragments and a good portion of sticks and stems. It smells kind of like a puffed cereal…and roasted tree bark. Houjicha has an interesting, comforting flavor to me. It’s one of those teas that seem so simple and plain but the taste ends up being complex and reassuring.

I’ve had this tea both hot and cold and both are lovely in their own way. The hot tea made my stomach feel nice and warm and settled. I can totally see why it would be used as a digestive aid. Houjicha has that tummy-friendly feeling as well as a unique roasted, nutty flavor. Not medicinal…but helpful and tasty. When the tea was chilled it had a nice mix of nuttiness, deep malt and a lingering sweetness. I must say that I’m a fan. And it’s technically green tea…not my usual oolongs or black teas. Yay! I can’t wait to try other Houjichas, but for the time being, this suits me just fine.

Ricky

Must restock on houjicha!

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68
52 tasting notes

Not too too much to say about this tea. Sadly this is my last sample from Samovar.. for now at least :) I’ve had Adagio’s Houjicha and for the most part, I found it to be a little more smokey but not as smooth as this tea. I felt it was a good trade off; I’d rather sacrifice a little bit of smokyness for smoothness any day. Regardless, it had some good nuttyness and definitely was woodsy as the description says. There are twigs in the tea leaves after all…

This tea is a great staple and if your in the mood for drinking a smooth, nutty tea, this is the one. I’m all for exotic tasting teas, but this is one I could see myself having every day without objection.

Preparation
3 min, 0 sec
Cofftea

Have you tried Den’s Tea’s version?

mattscinto

Not yet. Got any samples? :P

Cofftea

No, unfortunately not.

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78
53 tasting notes

I have had this tea on my shelf for far too long. I’ve just been too lost in my black teas that I ended up forgetting that I had this in the first place. But here we are, trying it out at last!

I remember when I first got this tea, I read the description and it sounded like I’d really like it, so I went ahead and did what I normally never do: buy a large tin of it before getting a chance to try it. When I received the tea, I remember smelling it and being kind of thrown off my feet at first. That was NOT what I was expecting at all from a green tea.

But here we are, months later, and I’m taking another sniff of the leaves and I’m not sure why I was so thrown off when I first smelt it. Sure, it’s not exactly what I’d expect, but it isn’t a bad kind of smell. So I decided to pack this one into my traveler and head into work with it today.

First impressions: Yes, this is good. It’s definitely got that roasted texture to it. It’s dark for a green tea (though I have yet to have too much experience with greens) yet still quite light. I guess I should say that for a green tea, this is a very full bodied tea. Your taste buds get flooded with roasted, nutty, malty flavour that is hard to describe.

Personally, I get more of a greenish smell from this tea than I do in its taste.

Side-note: The leaves in their dry state are very brittle and quite long at times. I noticed immediately that once I poured hot water over them, most of them turned into smaller pieces of the leaves, as if the water snapped them like a twig before they went soft. Interesting…

I can definitely see myself coming back to this one this winter. The only question now is, why was I turning my back to this one for so long?

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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75
37 tasting notes

Interesting tea. Quite malty with hints of roasted nuts. For me it has a similar flavor profile with Ryokucha, with little less punch.

Preparation
205 °F / 96 °C 5 min, 0 sec

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91
28 tasting notes

Absolutely fantastic. Great color, great flavor. The flavor is very heavy, thick, and smoky. It’s one of the best roasted teas I’ve ever had. Definitely worth ordering. I tend to steep this one a bit longer than usual, I feel it really gets better and rarely over-steeps.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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