Review: Hakoniwado Yame Houjicha

Green Tea, Hakoniwado, Hojicha Tea Add comments
MaryAnn’s Teaview Snapshot
Thumbs up!"Houjicha is a green tea, often very palatable to black tea drinkers, as it has a warm nutty flavor that goes well with food. "
MaryAnn’s Teaview: 7/10
Other Teaviews: Sophie gave it 6.5/10, Vanessa gave it 7/10, Raven gave it 7.4/10
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Hakoniwado is a tea shop offering tea from Yame and Ureshino, the southernmost tea growing regions in Japan. Yame is considered one of best tea growing regions and is well known in Japan. The shop’s web site provides a map showing tea growing areas potentially affected by radiation drift following earthquake damage to the Fukushima Daiichi power plant. The tea shop states that southern tea growing areas on Kyushu island such as Kagoshima, Yame and Ureshino were not in the drift pathway and no radioactive particles were found even in the first tea crop following the accident. I trust talking about this issue won't cause readers to start worrying about this tea -- I found the available level of detail on particle drift, maps included, quite reassuring.

Product description: Yame is known throughout Japan as best tea-production region. Houjicha, while technically a green tea, is often mistaken for a black tea due to its dark color. In fact, the dark color is achieved through roasting, not oxidation. Still, houjicha is often very palatable to black tea drinkers, as it has a warm nutty flavor that goes well with food. Houjicha is commonly known to be very low in caffeine, as a result of the roasting process. For this reason, many enjoy it at night, when other teas would keep them awake.

My experience: Unlike other houjichas I’ve encountered, this tea releases its aroma immediately as boiling water hits it. And a fine aroma it is – complex and nutty. The second day I tried this tea, found myself anticipating the aroma and I was not disappointed. The taste is richer than expected, pleasant earthy nuttiness. I could feel the taste of this tea in my top front teeth, an unusual but pleasant sensation. Overall, the feeling imparted from drinking this tea is of calm balance, a special quality transcending the obvious effects of low caffeine content. I could enjoy this frequently as an after dinner tea. As anticipated, it didn't cause wakefulness. Second infusion did not release as much aroma but still quite good.

— To purchase Hakoniwado Yame Houjicha, or for more specific information on ingredients or the story behind this particular tea, click here to go directly to the manufacturer's web site.

Teaviews Member: MaryAnn MaryAnn
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