Top Leaf

Tea type
Green Tea
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Dandelion, Green Beans, Honey, Seaweed, Sweet, Umami, Round , Vegetal, Butter, Butternut Squash, Citrus, Creamy, Honeydew, Spinach
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Loose Leaf
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Edit tea info Last updated by fancyteacup
Average preparation
165 °F / 73 °C 2 min, 30 sec 4 g 12 oz / 355 ml

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47 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Green tea of the mid morning here. This is another sensational, fresh & beautiful tea from Mellow Monk. I took this to work with me to concentrate on finishing it off (so I can justify buying...” Read full tasting note
  • “Revisiting a bit of this as I close-up my night of swap prep. In the past 2 weeks I have yanked over 120 different teas from my cupboards! Woot! Sharing the TEA LOVE :) I’m going to have another...” Read full tasting note
  • “Once again, I’m drinking a neglected Sencha and wondering why the hell I haven’t been drinking this more regularly. The first cup was made using barely steaming water, steeping the leaves for a...” Read full tasting note
  • “Thank you TeaEqualsBliss for sending me some of this tea! It’s A-MAZ-ING and I’m glad that I had this opportunity to try it. This is so good. I love the light grapefruit notes of this tea. The...” Read full tasting note

From Mellow Monk

This is our top-of-the-line honcha, or traditional green tea. Top Leaf™ Green Tea is specially pampered in its own separate corner of the tea orchard. Not only does this tea receive extra fertilizer (organic, of course) during the growing season, but at harvest time, the growers pick only the top layer of young tea leaves. The result is a distinctive, more subtle, gentler flavor. This tea is always first flush.

You’ll taste the TLC (Tender Loving Care) that goes into this special tea. Treat yourself to one of the best green teas in the Aso tea-growing region—Mellow Monk® Top Leaf™ Green Tea.

Top Leaf™ Green Tea comes vacuum-sealed for freshness in foil packets. Each packet contains 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of tea, enough to make 40 to 50 cups of brewed tea.

To brew, use 1 heaping teaspoon of tea leaves for an 8-ounce cup or mug. The water temperature should be about 75 degrees Celcius (167 degrees Fahrenheit). (For more on water temperature, see here.) For the first steeping, let the tea brew for about 3 minutes. For the second and third steepings, let the tea brew for about 30 seconds to 1 minute.

About Mellow Monk View company

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47 Tasting Notes

882 tasting notes

Thank you for the lovely sample Alphakitty! The leaves have a beautiful deep green color. The aroma is slightly vegetal and sweet with hints of butter. It’s sweet and has a bit of a buttery\vegetal taste to it. I want to say that there is a bit of a light(and I mean LIGHT) citrus flavor in the background. I reeeaalllllyyy enjoyed this tea. It’s been a minute or two since I’ve had a nice green :]
Thanks again!


A minute or two? :P


Yeah… It was a really long minute though :]

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190 tasting notes

mmm! sipping on this while carving a pumpkin today! It is really delicious tea, that tastes vegetal and buttery smooth. I am almost out of this tea, and will most definitely have to restock after this sample is finished!

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39 tasting notes

Drinking the last of my Top Leaf sample presently. It’s quite good. I enjoy this more than most of the sencha teas I’ve tried. It’s characteristic smoothness is very appealing. The deep grassy flavor is maximized with with almost zero astringency (at least the way I brew it: < 1 minute). It’s a very refreshing and invigorating tea for early morning drinking. First time I tried this was actually at a tea gathering with friends in the evening, and having been away from Japanese green teas for a while, I found myself at a low tolerance to their higher caffeine levels (relative to whole leaf Chinese teas) and could not get to sleep that night.

Anyway, I find this kind of tea very well suited for the morning, especially when it’s still dark out. Drinking before and during dawn is one of my favorite times for tea. It’s a liminal and contemplative time, when I feel completely free of distractions. And I’m finding the Mellow Monk teas I’ve tried to be apropos in that space. Not just anything will do here. A more astringent sencha would be like the shock of a bad alarm clock, starting your day with a nervous jolt. I can’t have that.

Honestly, I’m generally much more fond of the shaded Japanese greens, as I had indicated in my tasting note of Mellow Monk’s kabusecha (Shaded Leaf). I enjoyed the kabusecha quite thoroughly, and this tea doesn’t fall that far beneath it. I would take this over a standard sencha any morning. Though if I had my way, and money was no concern, I’d be going for the finest gyokuro all the time (which is really my favorite of the Japanese greens, far and away).

For the price, which is less than half of Mellow Monk’s kabusecha, Top Leaf is much more reasonable for the possibility of drinking a good Japanese green tea daily. And it’s certainly a tempting prospect…

170 °F / 76 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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95 tasting notes

A delicious and wonderful sencha. Not-too-intensely vegetal (cooked greens) in the first infusion, slightly less vegetal with a hint of stringency in the second, and pleasantly astringent in the third. A great value indeed for the price!

First infusion – 5 g. per 8 oz. water, 65 deg., 50 sec.

Second infusion – 5 g. per 8 oz. water, 60 deg., 1 min.

Third infusion – 5 g. per 8 oz. water, 55 deg., 10 min.

150 °F / 65 °C 0 min, 45 sec

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25 tasting notes

This is my favorite! I love this like no other. I also love the company. Their customer service is awesome! I love how they use the personal touch. Their shipping is fast, and inexpensive. I especially love how they listen and respond to, not only their own customers, but also the tea drinking community, in general. They are very in-touch. They are also a green certified company, and all of their teas are organic.

Top Leaf is my top choice. It is sweet and berry-like, and has that slightly citrus tangy lip smacking quality. There’s also a hint of sweet butteriness, like corn on the cob. I love the smell of the dry leaf, too. It smells of sweet mellon and honey suckle. The color is quite beautiful. I always order a lot, because I drink it down, fast. It leaves me feeling centered, clean, and relaxed. I crave it all day long.

160 °F / 71 °C 2 min, 0 sec

Wow, I must say you got me interested in this tea company. I’m a big fan of flavored tea, but I have turned to good quality natural plain tea lately. However, I don’t have much luck with the greens so far, I have yet to find one I really do enjoy. I’m adding this one to my next purchase list, cause I never heard of a «sweet and berry-like» green tea before :-)

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22 tasting notes

Been on a bit of a Japanese green kick and I have tried a handful of senchas, gyokuros and a highly touted shincha over the past few months — I must say Top Leaf is the cream of the crop. For my tastes, and wallet this is the best sencha I have found yet!

Everything about this tea is very well rounded, without a single glaring flaw or characteristic dominating the flavor profile or aroma. Top Leaf brings the entire gambit of Japanese flavors together seamlessly into a full bodied and near perfectly balanced cuppa creamy green greatness: sweet, creamy, savory, nutty, vegetal, mildly oceanic with a forgiving faint citrus-like astringency. Really I can’t emphasize enough how well balanced these elements are in this particular tea, its certainly an accomplishment!

Another high point, Top Leaf is relatively flexible and forgiving with regards to brew temp and time which is not a characteristic shared with many other senchas I have encountered. It brews wonderfully mellow and sweet at gyokuro-like temperatures ~ 120 and can tolerate a full minute of 180 for the savory 2nd steep without getting overly bitter. Anything in-between is great too of course! Really, you have to completely blow it (in sencha standards!) to muck this one up.

Overall a great great sencha and certainly worthy of a spot amongst one of my favorite teas. Its exceptionally well balanced bordering on exquisite! I have gone through 3.5 oz and recently ordered more! In my opinion, you’d be hard pressed to find a better quality japanese green for the price.


Achievement unlocked: daily drinker status!

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8 tasting notes

First tea from Mellow Monk. They had a promotion going on after Top Leaf won an award.

Smelled very…. green, similar to fresh cut grass. Its a good smell, but not at the top of my list. With the first steeping it was shockingly smooth yet the flavor was distinct and noticeable, not in an overpowering way. The flavor demands and holds your attention. The second steeping, while having a fainter flavor is remarkably similar in quality to the first.
Verdict: Beautiful and delightful, this tea is under-priced. No reason you shouldn’t treat yourself to top notch, award winning tea.

175 °F / 79 °C 3 min, 0 sec

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348 tasting notes

While it may be intense for some on the foretaste, it settles into a grassy, berry-sweet middle ground unlike any sencha I’ve ever tried.

Full Review:

165 °F / 73 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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4 tasting notes

I’m pretty new to the whole loose leaf tea scene, so my palate might not be as discriminating as that of a true tea connoisseur, but even I can tell that Mellow Monk’s Top Leaf is without a doubt a tea of very high quality. I’m giving it an 100 because I haven’t tasted anything better yet.

I received my order only a few days after I placed it, which was a pleasant surprise.
The tea itself is fairly smooth and has a delicate grassy taste to it that, for some reason, makes me think of the ocean.

170 °F / 76 °C 2 min, 0 sec

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10 tasting notes

I agree with TeaEqualsBliss – this tea has a buttered veggies kind of taste which I personally enjoy quite a bit. Delicious.

170 °F / 76 °C 3 min, 30 sec

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