I’ve been trying to kick the coffee habit, and I’ve been looking for teas to replace it. I’ve had my fair share of “coffee flavored blacks”, but I prefer to keep my tea as pure as I can. With that said, someone suggested hojicha as an alternative. Hojicha is a little trickier to find in the US, but in Japan it’s pretty much the defacto tea served at meals. This hojicha is a little better than most. Nice and smooth. Some nutty and roasty notes but nothing too overpowering. This tea is actually really good cold too!

While hojicha is a green tea, it doesn’t taste anything like green tea. It doesn’t really taste like coffee either. I think this is a great gateway tea though, especially for those that think green tea is too vegetal. And it doesn’t really get a bitter which is a nice change of pace from most greens.

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So the short story is, a few years ago I was VERY MUCH into tea. And then a lot of things happened, and I got out of tea for a while. And now, I’m back.ⁿ

To me, tea is the missing puzzle piece for my healthy lifestyle. When I drink tea I am encouraged to eat healthy and be active. I drink tea because I simply enjoy the taste, but the health aspects are just an added bonus.

I love all types of teas, although greens and oolongs tend to be my favorite. I’ll drink herbals if I’m feeling a little under the weather. And recently I’ve been getting more into young shengs (also chasing that elusive “cha qi”).

Unless otherwise stated, I drink my teas straight. I’ve been doing gongfu mostly these days, so I use a ceramic gaiwan with an electric kettle. For greens and some oolongs, I’ll do a western style with a glass mug or regular infuser. I try to specify if my brewing parameters are outside the norm.

I’m kinda strict when rating my teas. I rarely give a tea above a 95. Teas that I really like I keep in the 95-85 category. I’ve yet to give a tea 100 yet. So, if you see a tea about 95, that means I thought it was an amazing tea!

ⁿ – Note: I did step away from tea for a while.. again. But now I’m back for REALZ. Usually I have to put this interest on hold when real life takes over, so I’m hoping for no major life events these days.


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