Sakura Tea

Tea type
Flowering Tea
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Cherry, Flowers, Plums, Salt
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Edit tea info Last updated by Shinobi_cha
Average preparation
195 °F / 90 °C 3 min, 45 sec

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11 Tasting Notes View all

  • “Tea peeps? This tea is FREAKING BEAUTIFUL! This is a new tea for me, and from what I was told from the tea seller,, this is a very traditional japanese flavor. Ehh! A Challenge! An...” Read full tasting note
  • “This tea has very interesting steeping directions. However, they help to offset the salt (which preserves the blossoms)… The sight of the tea is very nice—clear liquid with a pink flower floating...” Read full tasting note
  • “This is basically a pickled flower. It is lovely once the petals unfurl. It makes me feel like a princess. Everyone knows that flowers are a princess’ favorite food. The tea itself it a little...” Read full tasting note
  • “Wow, talk about different but so cool. You have to go into this with an open mind and I think I did or at least I hope I did. It was lovely and so very unique. I tried it plain for my first time...” Read full tasting note

From Obubu Tea

The sakura, or Japanese cherry blossom, is one of the foremost symbols of Japan. Symbolizing the intense ephemerality of life, they bloom en masse once a year for a short week or two painting Japan pink and white, then are blown away by the wind in a beautiful shower of petals.

Our Sakura Tea is salt-pickled, the standard way of drinking it in Japan. But the salted sakura petals are quite flexible as well and are great with Japanese sake, mixed with rice (sakura rice), cookies, cakes, and occasionally made into sakura tea jelly among other things. We also highly recommend adding them to our sencha and genmaicha tea for that uniquely Japanese spring flavor.

The flavor of these sakura “cherry” blossoms, being the blossoms and not the fruit, is quite different from the cherry fruit flavor so common in Western sweets (as well as many “Japanese cherry green teas” where the “cherry” is actually cherry fruit flavoring). If you’ve never had sakura-flavored tea before, be prepared for a wonderfully unique experience!!

How to steep Sakura Tea:
1. Take one sakura petal and soak it in warm water for about 5 minutes to remove the salt.
2. After you have removed the salt, place the petal in your tea cup.
3. Pour hot water into the tea cup with the petal inside, then use a spoon to add the salted water to according to taste.

Product name: Sakura Tea
Ingredients: Yaezakura, salt, plum vinegar
Weight of contents: 20 g (holds 15 – 20 blossoms, 1 blossom per cup)
Produced in: Odawara, Kanagawa Prefecture
Expiration: Good for 6 months from shipment
Storage: Seal tightly and refrigerate

About Obubu Tea View company

Company description not available.

11 Tasting Notes

1231 tasting notes

Tea peeps? This tea is FREAKING BEAUTIFUL!

This is a new tea for me, and from what I was told from the tea seller,, this is a very traditional japanese flavor. Ehh! A Challenge! An Adventure! Lets go!

Dry leaf, these pretty blossoms smells like pickles. Oh boy! Most likely they smell like this since they are salt pickled cherry blossoms.

The taste? I get a cute kiss of a sweet cherry taste that is floral. The sakura tea’s flavor flutters softly towards a more savory flavor that’s a little salty. The more I sip away, the more stronger and floral this tea gets.

Full review with lots of gorgeous pictures on my blog, The Oolong Owl

Terri HarpLady

Hmmm….I have a cherry tree…I wonder if I can salt pickle some of the blossoms…

Terri HarpLady

This also sounds like a perfect tea for the book we’re reading in the steepster book club!

Oolong Owl

I’m not sure if they do a special process when they salt pickle it, but it be interesting if you could pull it off! If I had more of these, I’d be experimenting with their other suggestions on how to use the blossoms.


What a beautiful blossom! You are right – it would be AMAZING for a wedding!


That is so cool! I wish there was a tree in the neighbourhood I knew hadn’t been sprayed that I could steal some blossoms from in the middle of the night… :)



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280 tasting notes

This tea has very interesting steeping directions. However, they help to offset the salt (which preserves the blossoms)…
The sight of the tea is very nice—clear liquid with a pink flower floating in it.

The smell of the blossoms and the taste of the tea is like cherry jam, which I like very much. However, it is muted, and there is certainly salt present in the flavor (especially towards the end of the cup) so that wasn’t my favorite…

This is good, but, I wouldn’t buy it. The coolest thing about it (besides the appearance) is that I can now tell what Sakura really tastes like, and so it has pretty much the exact same flavor of cherry that Den’s Sakura Sencha has (though, that one is definitely stronger). I’m curious to also try Rishi’s Sakura Sencha to compare. Either way, I’ve now learned the difference between simply cherry flavor and sakura flavor (the latter being different, though I’m not exactly able to describe it well, it seems more buttery).

Geoffrey Norman

I so want this.


If I had more than that sample, I would have sent some!

Geoffrey Norman

How did you get it? Did you do order their starter pack?


Yes…. sometime around the end of Nov, they had a deal, $15 for the whole starter/sampler pack (incl. shipping) and my wife got it for me as a Xmas gift. Now, I think it’s back to normal at $25 (that should include shipping), but I’m not quite sure it’s worth it. Not that their teas aren’t good, but of the 90g of samples they send you, 5g are genmai (not genmaicha, just popped rice for you to mix with whatever you like… which, to me, isn’t a good deal since if you buy it separate it is very cheap in a store), and 5g are genmaicha (kind of doubling up right?)… anyway, it seems like it would be a little on the expensive side at $25.

Geoffrey Norman

I’m not much of a genmaicha fan anyway, so that wouldn’t really interest me much. The matcha sampler had my attention.


Yeah, exactly. I’d prefer the price of the sampler to be more like $18 or something, and include just their best senchas and maybe the sakura tea since it’s so fun and unique.

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525 tasting notes

This is basically a pickled flower. It is lovely once the petals unfurl. It makes me feel like a princess. Everyone knows that flowers are a princess’ favorite food.
The tea itself it a little salty and winey tasting. I’m guessing the wine flavor is actually the vinegar. Mostly it tastes lightly a cherry with a floral character underneath.

It is a pleasant drink but it takes getting used to. I imagine fresh cherry blossoms to taste much better since they won’t need to be preserved in salt and vinegar. I’m guessing you’ll need to be in Japan during springtime for a treat like that.

Obubu Tea

Actually, it’s the salt/vinegar pickling that brings out this traditional flavor…this is the flavor that is used in traditional sakura mochi etc. It can also be achieved through the leaf as well as the flower. This flavor is popular in Japan during the blooming of the sakura in April, but actually, it takes two-three months to produce so all the sakura-flavored items that you get in Japan in April was actually produced the year before.

By the way, this is one of the best comments I’ve ever read…“Everyone knows that flowers are a princess’ favorite food.” Great!!!


So fresh Sakura don’t taste like cherries? :( thanks for the info. I’ve had Sakura Mochi with the leaves wrapped around them. They are pretty good too. They probably would be great with this tea but I had it with green tea at the time.

Glad I’m at least somewhat entertaining. :)

Obubu Tea

Sakura are actually a different species of tree from cherry fruit bearing trees. But the cherry blossoms themselves in any case taste nothing like cherry fruit. In fact, I’m not sure eating raw cherry blossoms will generate much flavor…the pickling tends to strengthen the flavor.

Sometimes you see “Cherry Blossom Green Tea”…look at the ingredients. Some companies make blends with rose petals, artificial cherry fruit flavoring and green tea…i.e. “cherry” + “(rose) blossoms”. Which is not to say that this combination tastes bad…actually can be very yummy.


Well, I thought I tasted a cherry-ish flavor in this tea, which is why I assumed the fresh blossoms would have that flavor as well. As I recall, the sakura mochi also had this cherry-ish flavor. I was surprised that the leaves and flowers would taste like cherries. Or maybe the flavor I’m describing as cherry-ish is actually something else and I’m crazy.
hmmm…maybe I’ll go to the Sakura Festival at the botanical garden this spring and snag a few flowers to try. :)

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432 tasting notes

Wow, talk about different but so cool. You have to go into this with an open mind and I think I did or at least I hope I did. It was lovely and so very unique. I tried it plain for my first time but based on the flavor I can imagine this a great addition to Genmiacha and Sencha and I truly can’t wait to try it that way.

Flavor: Sweet and lightly floral as you would imagine a cherry blossom to smell. Tiny bit salty but most of the flavor was removed during the 5mins I let the flower soak in warm water, as directed. I then put in a spoonful of water, one at a time using the water the flower was soaking which adds a bit of a salty flavor. I noticed after the second spoonful that the sweetness vanished and the flavor became completely different. I wish I could describe it but let’s just say it was very unique and no it doesn’t taste like water with salt. I am glad I tried it and recommend you give it a try knowing it is a big risk. I imagine this to be a love it or hate it experience for most.

195 °F / 90 °C

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541 tasting notes

I can’t believe I never logged this tea! I’ve had it for quite some time and although it says that the expiration date is 6 months after shipment, these smell beautiful much after that. This is a truly beautiful tea. In the back the tiny flowers have a smell of light umeboshi, salt, plum/cherry, and floral hints. It is simply amazing to watch them steep. I wish I had a decent camera because you can see the veins in the translucent skins of the flower petals. As much as I enjoy watching blooming teas, this feels much more organic. Since I couldn’t find any official steep times quickly I treated this very similar to an herbal. I used only 6oz of tea for one slightly larger and one medium blossom.
Once steeped this actually has a much strong smell than expected. It has a very light liquor that reminds me of white wines. It has a very unexpected ume plum smell. It is very distinct and reminds me of my favorite Japanese ume gum. Any sense of floral smell is very subdued. The flavor is very much the same, very light, subtle, and most of the flavor is on the back end of the sip. It is a very fun and amazing tea that I would advise people try at least once.

185 °F / 85 °C 4 min, 0 sec

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921 tasting notes

Today was a good day, I got to visit my favorite local Asian Market, the illustrious International 888 Store that is as big as a large supermarket and has a huge selection of yummy foods. Also and entire large aisle devoted to tea which I spend way to much time lingering in. Of course there are lots of beautiful tea pots and some clothes as well, what can I say, I love this store and visiting it is one of my favorite things. Also my reviewing schedule for tea is totally thrown off because I got to try a tea that has been on my ‘to try list’ for years! The package arrived last night and I could have tried it immediately, but it is far to beautiful a tea to drink at night, this needs sunlight.

Today I am reviewing Sakura Tea by Kyoto Obubu Tea Plantations and! I was told (more like warned a bit) that this tea is ‘uniquely Japanese’ and may be a bit weird, this warning was completely unnecissary because I love a lot of ‘uniquely Japanese’ things (I mean I eat Beni Shoga straight from the jar and eat seaweed like they are chips, I love Japanese food!) So of course when I see a beautiful and very delicate tea made from cherry blossoms preserved in salt and plum vinegar, I think to myself “I have got to get my greedy little hands on some of that” and several years later, I finally did! The aroma is sweet and a bit tangy, it reminds me of pickled peaches, or more likely pickled plums but a touch sweeter. The floral notes are very subtle and the tartness mixed with salt is a delicious aroma. I admit it, I licked the salt crystals out of the package, I may be a salt addict.

At first I wanted to try the tea without adding any of the salt brine from the initial soaking, just nothing but flower. The aroma is very mild with a blend of sweetness and flowers, it smells very much so like a spring breeze carrying the aroma of flowers from a distance. The taste is as mild as the aroma, delicately sweet and floral with just a touch saltiness. There is also a smooth and nutty aftertaste.

Adding the brine makes the aroma a little stronger and the taste, well, lets just say I might have giggled a bit at how good it was. It leaves the mouth feeling smooth and the taste is creamy with hints of tartness and floral. It is a bit salty, but deliciously so! It does not leave the mouth feeling dried out as one would expect from something salt pickled, but instead invigorates the salivary glands. The aftertaste is nutty and enjoyable.

It was recommended that you can brew it with other teas, specifically Genmai Cha and Sencha, conveniently I have some of both so first let us try the Genmai Cha. It seems strange to say it, but Genmai Cha is a pretty potent tea, at least when compared to Sakura Tea, so the addition of a flower certainly does not overpower the already present taste. It does compliment it very well with notes of sweetness and delicate floral tones. I really enjoyed the subtle sweetness added to what I usually consider to be a savory tea.

Brewing the flower with Sencha was a wonderful idea, really this is delicious. It adds a buttery sweetness and the floral and pickled notes are much more prominent than in the Genmai Cha. I feel a bit bad, I want to get into detailed descriptions on how wonderful this mixture of flavors is, but it honestly boggles my mind a bit. It is one of those moments where I think my Synesthesia kicked in and all I can perceive are colors. Beautiful spring colors swirling in my mouth!

Lastly I found a recipe for a Sweet Sakura Latte and had some time to kill while waiting for Ben to return home from school, so I wanted to try it out. He arrived home the moment I finished photographing the results and I deiced to let him have the first sip, expecting the worst (as a rule he is not a fan of most Japanese foods and teas) but surprisingly he really enjoyed it. We ended up splitting the latte, which was nice. The taste is creamy and sweet with just a hint of the salt. There are strong notes of floral that finish off with a nutty aftertaste.

For blog and photos:


Hm. Somehow I’ve never been to International 888…


I certainly recommend it! I have managed to find some awesome teas there for about half the price I would have to pay online. Plus lots of food!

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32 tasting notes

I’ve been wanting to try this for a long time, so I finally ordered some sakura tea from Obubu Tea.

The tea has a very delicate cherry scent, with a salty undertone, and tastes similar. The taste is much stronger than I expected from a single blossom: uniquely floral and refreshing, mildly sweet, with a hint of salt. You can also add the salted water you soaked the blossom in back into the tea to taste, which makes the flavour stronger and saltier.

If you have glass teaware, I recommend using it with this tea so that you can watch the blossom unfurl itself when you pour on the hot water. You can get several infusions out of each blossom – I’ve drank this tea several times now and usually get four or five infusions out of a single blossom.

180 °F / 82 °C 2 min, 30 sec

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20 tasting notes

This tea is fascinating and very much worth trying. It’s a really marvelous experience to drink clear, sweet nectar scented with cherry blossoms.

The flowers arrive salt-pickled and must first be soaked in warm water before use. The unsoaked salted sakura blossoms smell like a sweet candy. It reminds me a little bit of the smell of salted plum candies from the Chinese grocery store. While the liquor produced from steeping the sakura blossom is clear and virtually colorless, it has a very distinctive sakura taste, like honey, sugared plum and melon. Steeped as recommended, the flowers bloom exuberantly in the hot water and reveal a very sweet and floral taste with a complexity of flavor.

I also used this to flavor my everyday genmaicha and it tasted delicious. It really adds layers of complexity and sweetness to the tea!

The steeped flower is gorgeous, check out my photos here:

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292 tasting notes

This is my 150th review! BOOM! FIREWORKS!

I like to review something special and out of ordinary for my reviews that are multiples of 50, so here’s one I’ve had for a bit that I haven’t gotten around to reviewing.

In Japan, this sakura blossom tisane is called Sakurayu. It’s made by picking fresh cherry blossoms in the spring and preserving them in salt and plum vinegar. The preparation method is a little tricky because of the salt. The method I’ve tried that worked best is to soak the flowers in hot water for about 5 minutes to remove the salt. This should be hot water like you’d draw from the tap. Maybe 140F degrees or less. You aren’t looking to steep the flowers, but to remove the salt. After this, you should put the blossoms directly into your teacup and pour on boiling water. Let them steep another 3 to 5 minutes.

The resulting drink is very light in color, but slightly yellow. The floating blossoms are gorgeous when they open into little fine poofs of pink. The scent and taste are surprisingly more like cherries than I’d imagine. I thought it’d be a bit more floral. I think some of this is actually plum flavor coming from the plum vinegar. There’s a hint of saltiness to this tea that is subtle, but if you save the initial brine from the flower that was soaked in hot water, you can scoop back in a little of this salty and flavorful brine a bit at a time if you want your drink to be a little more salty and flavorful. I personally enjoy it without putting any of this brine back in. It’s very delicate and spring-like.

I have also tried using these flowers to flavor sake. I soaked them in hot water for a few minutes to remove the salt, then put the flowers into my sake carafe and poured some sake in. The carafe was moved to a tall pot of water and then almost brought to a simmer to heat the sake inside. After this, I poured it back into the sake bottle, used a special pump that sucks the air back out, and put it into the fridge for a few hours to chill. I served it chilled and the sake was very sweet with a subtle cherry/floral taste and a really thick creamy texture. There was a tiny hint of saltiness, but it was not as detectable among the sweet flavor of the sake. These petals look just as beautiful in clear (filtered) sake as they do in water, and the flavor is even more delicious, if you like sake.

I really recommend these to any lovers of flowers, cherry trees, cherries, or Japan. This is a soothing spring beverage you can enjoy any time of the year.

UPDATE: I revisited this for the New Year and I found that adding just a bit of sugar really brought out the nice fruity and floral qualities of this and neutralized the saltiness. I only used about 1/4 teaspoon of sugar in a 5 oz cup with two flowers. It was really nice. I think I’ll be using sugar with Sakurayu from here on.

Flavors: Cherry, Flowers, Plums, Salt

Boiling 5 min, 0 sec

Congrats on 150!


Thank you!


I adore the taste of umeshu (a Japanese plum wine/liquer), so would probably love this tea. Don’t know about the salty brine but if it can be removed. The sake idea sounds interesting as well.


It isn’t very salty at all if you soak the flowers a bit and then brew them in separate water. I read on a Reddit post from a former employee of Obubu that the founder is working on a method to preserve them without salt. That would be really awesome if it works out!


Would love to get my hands on some of this tea. Wonder if they ship to New Zealand.


I imagine they do. They ship from Japan.

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863 tasting notes

Ever since that yummy encounter with the Obukucha tea I’ve been wanting to see if pickled cherry blossom would be as good as the pickled plum in that green tea.

Unfortunately that’s a no.

I think it’s because the salted, vinegared blossom also has a sweetness to it, and that’s like putting sugar on salt and vinegar chips. Or at least that’s what my tastebuds equated it with, and that is just gross.

Even once its steeped, as gorgeous as the pink flower looks floating in the tea, it just doesn’t ever have a flavor I can stand. Sweetened vinegar is just not my thing. Oh well, I’m really glad I got to try it and see for sure!


did you try rinsing it first? I have some sakura tea from another seller, and they specifically told me to rinse the salt off before brewing it. Thanks for reminding me actually, I need to try mine soon! :D


Yeah, I rinsed it per the directions. I think my problem was the sweet/salty combo. I like one or the other and not both together (the Obukucha was very savory, which is what I loved about it). I hope you end up liking the latte – can’t wait to read your tasting note about it!

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