This is the first houjicha I’ve been able to say emphatically that I like. I am always intrigued by the roastiness but sometimes put off a little by how intense it is. This kukicha is very roasty, toasty, and earthy without tasting like dirt. It had a nice sweetness and mildness, even after a three-minute preliminary steep as suggested. I’ve decided what this tastes like is when you’re eating a walnut and some of the inner shell lining is still stuck to it. You know? It’s nutty and with a touch of that woody nut shell taste, but sweeter. I got a second infusion before spilling the leaves all over the sink, and it was much milder and even sweeter. I’ll have to try the Den’s version of this some time.