80

Yay, back home from an exciting day of eating dim sum and going to the Asian market! I just recently got a Japanese cookbook and needed to stock up on dried noodles, miso, sauces, etc. This was my only tea purchase from the Asian market, which let me tell you, is impressive. They basically had an entire aisle of tea in various mysterious packets and I wanted to check them all out, but I didn’t want to subject the boyfriend to that when he was already being sweet enough to go shopping with me. I just happened to see this package in passing, and since I love kukicha I decided to give it a try. It was only about $7 for the 150g packet, after all. The stems have that familiar straight and stick-like appearance with a mix of rich green and lighter cream colors. Dry scent is a touch grassy but really sweet.

I would say this tea is definitely worth the price! The beginning of the sip has more of an umami presence that I normally find in kukicha and almost tastes like sencha. However, the middle and end have that unmistakable sweet flavor that just says “kukicha” to me. It’s also very smooth with no astringency or bitterness whatsoever. Definitely worth the price at just over $1 per ounce! I’ll have to make another trip to the Asian market sometime soon just to check out all of their teas.

Flavors: Creamy, Seaweed, Smooth, Spinach, Sweet, Umami

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML
Ubacat

I have a Korean/Japanese market nearby I’ve stopped in for teas occasionally. I’ll have to check to see if they have this tea. The cashiers at that market are so friendly! It’s a great place to shop.
Good luck on the Asian cooking!

Cameron B.

The market I went to seemed to have everything – Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indian, etc. It was huge and we were there for quite a while, ha ha.

They also had Maeda-en’s sencha and genmaicha, and they were some of the very few packages with English on them. :P

Ubacat

I’ve become a bit of a tea snob when it comes to sencha and genmaicha. lol I find most of the packages from Maeda-en are clear (letting the light in) and the quality is not the greatest. If you can find packages that do not let light in, I find the tea is better.

Cameron B.

Yeah, you’re right, it was in a package that was partially clear. However, it seems quite fresh and I’ve already transferred it to a tin. :)

Most of the other teas were in totally opaque packages, but they also were mostly in Chinese/Japanese so I would’ve needed to spend a lot of time looking through them all, and I didn’t want to make the boyfriend endure that, ha ha!

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Comments

Ubacat

I have a Korean/Japanese market nearby I’ve stopped in for teas occasionally. I’ll have to check to see if they have this tea. The cashiers at that market are so friendly! It’s a great place to shop.
Good luck on the Asian cooking!

Cameron B.

The market I went to seemed to have everything – Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Indian, etc. It was huge and we were there for quite a while, ha ha.

They also had Maeda-en’s sencha and genmaicha, and they were some of the very few packages with English on them. :P

Ubacat

I’ve become a bit of a tea snob when it comes to sencha and genmaicha. lol I find most of the packages from Maeda-en are clear (letting the light in) and the quality is not the greatest. If you can find packages that do not let light in, I find the tea is better.

Cameron B.

Yeah, you’re right, it was in a package that was partially clear. However, it seems quite fresh and I’ve already transferred it to a tin. :)

Most of the other teas were in totally opaque packages, but they also were mostly in Chinese/Japanese so I would’ve needed to spend a lot of time looking through them all, and I didn’t want to make the boyfriend endure that, ha ha!

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Bio

Hi, I’m Cameron! I’m a 30-something software engineer currently living in Austin, Texas with my husband and our two pugs, Gobo and Ume. I tend to cycle between my different hobbies, and they include knitting, video games, board games, miniature painting, bento, baking, and – of course – TEA! But really, what I’m best at is collecting hobby related-things… ;)

~ 2021 SIPDOWN CHALLENGE! ~
~ December Sipdowns: 0
~ Total 2021 Sipdowns: 489

I prefer my tea lukewarm or at room temperature and without milk or sugar. I will often sweeten iced tea. I brew Western style, and fluctuate between using mugs or teapots with small cups depending on the season. Occasionally I’ll brew Gongfu style when I’m in the mood. I also use a kyusu for Japanese teas.

I am always up for a swap! Just let me know if you’d like to try something in my cupboard.

Tea Preferences:
I enjoy both flavored and unflavored teas in many forms. These days, I drink mostly flavored teas, and I tend to gravitate most toward black, green, and oolong varieties. I do have a special fondness for straight Japanese green teas, however. I also enjoy maté, rooibos, honeybush, and herbal tisanes. I love matcha and drink it often!

Fruit: All of them! My ‘go-to’s tend to be in the red fruits, stonefruit, or citrus spectra. I also really love apple, banana, berry, fig, lychee, melon, pear, and rhubarb flavors. Tropical fruits aren’t among my favorites, but I still enjoy them once in a while – especially passionfruit, mango, and pineapple. I am not generally a fan of coconut in tea, though there are some exceptions.

Dessert: I love creamy vanilla and marshmallow flavors, along with anything in the caramel family such as butterscotch, toffee, or maple. Chocolate is also a favorite, though I’m often disappointed by it in tea. And don’t forget anything buttery, cakey, or cookie-y!

Floral: I’m a little bit more particular in this category. I very much enjoy jasmine, even strong jasmine, along with sakura and chamomile. But I’m not crazy about rose or lavender flavors, and I prefer hibiscus in moderation only.

Spices: I don’t generally find myself drawn to masala chai, but I do enjoy spices combined with other flavors. My favorite spices are the warm ones, especially cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, and cardamom. A bit of heat from black pepper or chili is okay too, as long as it’s not overwhelming! Ginger can be a lovely accent, but I find it difficult to drink as a starring flavor.

Aromatics: I’m obsessed with Earl Grey! I also love cooling flavors such as mint (especially spearmint), pine, juniper, and eucalyptus. I am not a fan of strong rosemary or sage in tea.

Favorite Purveyors:
3 Leaf
Bird & Blend
Dammann Frères
Kusmi
Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms
Lupicia
Taiwan Tea Crafts
TeaVivre
Yunnan Sourcing

Tea Rating Scale:
90-100: Outstanding! Permanent cupboard resident
80-89: Great – a possible staple
70-79: Good, but I wouldn’t buy it
60-69: It’s decent
50-59: Meh… I may or may not have finished the cup
40-49: Ick. Couldn’t finish it.
00-39: Repulsive, I spat it out

I will sometimes refrain from rating a tea if I feel I’m too biased due to my personal dislikes, or if I suspect the sample has been compromised by age.

Cupboard Spreadsheet:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ZEuKf1-ppR-VXajO4vV39zU1N3zjFJteEPAynqD2yl0/edit?usp=sharing

Location

Austin, Texas

Website

https://www.instagram.com/tea...

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