Tea type
Green Tea
Green Tea
Butter, Seaweed, Vegetal, Grass, Roast nuts, Smoke
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Loose Leaf
Edit tea info Last updated by partea
Average preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec 7 g 10 oz / 308 ml

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A little luxury

There’s nothing like a little gyokuro to make life feel luxurious. It’s one of the highest grades of Japanese tea. The leaves come from single buds and are shielded from the sun for two weeks before harvesting, which results in a sweeter, more nuanced tea. Most Japanese emperors drink it slowly to savour its distinctive flavour. (MK Kosher)

Ingredients: Japanese green tea from Shizuoka Prefecture.

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21 Tasting Notes

655 tasting notes

Grassy-sweet, vegetal (seaweed), and buttery. Lately, that’s all I’ve wanted in a cup. I think I may have OD’d on all my flavoured and unflavoured black teas, or maybe it’s the indecisive weather here on the northwest coast. I just want greens, funny herbals, and chais made on stove top- all of which are teas I didn’t care much for last year.

The main con with this tea is the price. I’m not sure if this is a top notch gyokuro specimen, but it’s alright for now. Like some of the lighter tasting teas, each consecutive sip builds up on a foundation of flavour. While the first few sips were watery and lackluster, the bottom of the second cup consisted of a creeping sweetness with a moist nutty aftertaste.

On a side note, living a 10 minute walk from David’s Tea this year is not going to be a happy thing for my tea budget.

3 min, 0 sec

Ha! I do a lot of my shopping at Uptown so I always try to ignore the store as I walk past it, pretend it’s not there. Be strong. :)


I’m near the one at Hillside. I know someone who works there on Saturdays, and she’s always notifying me about upcoming things. Life’s hard. :)

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709 tasting notes

The beau bought some of this the other day without looking at the price. Considering our general dislike of green teas (or at least a lack of enthusiasm for them) I wasn’t very impressed with him. We tried it out last night and I must say that I wasn’t impressed. I won’t give a numerical rating for now as I had only a few sips, but this was little more than hot water to me. I couldn’t pick out any sort of taste, not even vegetal or buttery as expected. It eas extremely mild and way too pricy. So far, I’m not impressed.


I’ve been thinking of trying the Gyokuro from Teavana (I can get it in person). Is it not worth it even if you like greens, do you think? The price has been rather offputting…


How did you end up brewing it? Gyokuro is one you need to use a lot of leaf.


@Camiah – I DEFINITELY need to give this another go sometime. If you can afford, I always endorse trying a tea for yourself. If you can get it in person, I’d say to just pick up maybe 10 grams or so to give it a shot It’s pretty dense though, so you don’t get much of it. : (

@Brittany – The beau brewed it up according to whatever the bag instructions were. I think it was 1 tsp per cup, though honestly I’m not positive. If it does require more than that (say 2 tsp of their Gyokuro) that would make this tea around $4 per cup. For me, that’s way too pricey.


Using 1 gram of leaf per 1 oz is a good start. It sounds very strong (and it is), but that’s usually how I’ve read to brew it via Japanese instructions. Gyokuro is pricey as it is, and having to use so much leaf just makes it an occasional luxury tea for me.


Temperature is the kicker, here — try brewing it around 145* or 160* for the first infusion, and increase by 15-20* each time. It starts out thick, sweet, and brothy (with that delicious “umami” everyone talks about), and slowly changes into a sharper, sencha-like tea.

If that doesn’t work, you might have some bum Gyo :(


Thanks for the advice, Brittany and Cole. I will try to keep both your comments in mind on the next shot. I should probably also use my gaiwan like a sensible person.

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1662 tasting notes

buttery? yes. grassy? a little. unique? yeah, I’ll give it that…
However all of these things are overshadowed by the fact that this is yet another green tea which makes me nauseous :(
I couldn’t even finish a second steep…
—funny, the teas that I expect will be ok are not, and vice versa. le sigh


so sad….if you want to use it in a recipie…its great sprinkled on salmon, or crushed in a mortar ’n’pestle and emuslified in butter as basted on fish


sadness indeed! :(
thankfully I only bought the cup… so I have none to use up!


but I do love me some fish… mmmm…

Winter Salo

Good thing you only had the cup – I hate it when I have tea sitting around that there’s no way I can drink again.

Kashyap: Never thought of putting it on fish will have to try that. Great tip.


yes, I agree that is the worst! I usually end up giving it away to whoever wants my handmedowns…


Do you tend to try your green teas on an empty stomach? Or near empty stomach? For some reason, green tea can nauseate when you are drinking it without much in your stomach. I’ve come close to throwing up before. Anyway, I find that heavier/nuttier green teas will keep this nausea at bay – Try David’s Toasted Walnut! Or Genmaicha, if you haven’t already.


This particular instance was maybe 2 hrs after breakfast… so I was neither hungry nor full. Maybe I’ll try it shortly after lunch sometime. I really do enjoy most Genmaichas. The rice seems to cut the ick factor for me.
As for toasted walnut, I did try that! It was nice :)
thx AliP!!

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464 tasting notes

I’m glad I got this for free because of their Earth Day promotion because if I had paid money for it, I would have thought it was a really waste of my money. This tea tastes and smells like seafood soup and tastes a little like it too. It’s got a seaweed/mussel quality to it. It’s definitely not what I’m looking for in a morning tea. At least it was light and smooth?

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658 tasting notes

This is the first Gyokuro I’ve ever tried. It was nice, but not astounding. It tasted like a nice but standard sencha to me. Light, buttery, slightly grassy. I’ll have to try some other Gyokuros to compare. Also, why am I following package instructions lately? It’s not working for me. I went with 2 minutes and this was starting to turn bitter. It would definitely have been nicer starting with shorter infusions.

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149 tasting notes

This tea is alright for what it is, a Japanese green tea. The reason for a lower rating is that it is supposed to be a Gyokuro.

This tea had the complexity of an average sencha, and didn’t really develop much beyond. Though this might be because I made it in the traditional method of quick brews.

160 °F / 71 °C 0 min, 30 sec

With my limited exposure to Japanese green teas enjoyed this one, but I agree with you that it’s not complex or dynamic like the price tag and label suggests it should be! :)


I really wish I had bought their sencha to compare. And thank you again for the sample CrowKettle! I don’t have a David’s Tea near me (well I travel all over, but I never seem to find one).

I guess how I distinguish between a sencha and a gyokuro is that in the gyokuro I should be tasting a salty , freshly sauteed kale greens, and some faint hint of water-chestnuts. A soft full bodied umami flavor. But a flavor that should warm your mouth and develop the longer you let it sit on your tongue.

If my travels take me back to Japan I am going to stock up on as much tea as I can (and share the teas too!).

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740 tasting notes

Well this smells…interesting. Like something from the sea. But not like ocean air, which I love. Something else from the sea, that doesn’t really smell all that great. I didn’t get that at all in the dry scent, only once it steeped.

Yep it tastes like something seafood-like as well. And despite growing up next to the ocean my entire life, I do NOT like seafood.

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18 tasting notes

This is really good! I was worried it would be too fishy, seaweedy but it isn’t. It’s a smooth, balanced vegetal goodness. If I hadn’t already tried the dragon pearls I would say that this is the best green tea I ever had. But nothing will top those jasmine-scented dragon pearls, those were love at first sip!

The second steep of this was just as good as the first! I did extend the steep time by a minute but no more being afraid it would turn bitter on me. But I’ve yet to be able to savor that last sip at the bottom of the cup on the first brew. I can imagine it would be delicious! You see, my two year old stole it. Yes, I made the mistake of sharing my tea with him early on and now he see’s me drinking and demands a sip. Every. Single. Time. Sometimes he’s content with just a sip and will let me enjoy my tea in peace. Not today. I thought when I gave him his obligatory sip of this he would say “yuck” and walk away..I mean what 2 year old would like a real green tea?? Mine would. And not only did he like it , he made me share sip for sip and then got to savor the last mouthful. Little bugger. Maybe he should be writing these reviews.

So, even without being able to savor that last mouthful of goodness of the first brew this stuff earns high marks. Not as high as my beloved dragon pearls but pretty darn close! I heard you can get tea-drunk. Not sure if that’s true but if it is I would imagine it’s tea like this and those delicious dragon drops that could help someone achieve that state.

165 °F / 73 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 16 OZ / 473 ML

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84 tasting notes

First Gyokuro I’ve tried, and it did smell good dry So I though I’d give it a go.
Definitely vegetal and grassy, but I didn’t get any of the smooth buttery flavour that other people seem to. This one turned bitter almost right off the bat, though I think that was due to the staff person using water that was too hot since I didn’t let it steep long at all. It seemed slightly sencha-like to me, but even that didn’t redeem it in the long run.

175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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442 tasting notes

Another tea I got in-store to sample. This time the girl knew how to brew a green and didn’t burn the leaves, something I was extremely grateful for when I took my first sips. This one is definitely vegetal, but less so than others I have tried. The flavour was a delicate one, not overpowering like I expected it to be, which was a pleasant surprise.

Not my favourite straight green, but I did finish the cup of this one.

2 min, 0 sec

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