Some History of Tea in Japan

In an article I recently wrote on tea drinking in the American colonies and the early United States I mentioned that a significant quantity of Japanese green tea was exported here during the latter part of the nineteenth century. Which led me to think that it might be interesting to look at Japanese tea history …

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Japan’s Green Tea Wars

If you know anything about the tea that’s produced in Japan, then you probably know that it's primarily of the green variety. The varieties of green tea grown there run the gamut from so-so to some of the finest green teas you're likely to get your hands on. One type of Japanese green tea that …

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Hang in There, Spring is Coming

As I write this, the northeastern region of the United States has just finished being assaulted by one of those "storm of the century" type events. It's called Nemo (did we just start naming winter storms or haven't I been paying attention?) and it made life rather trying in that part of the world for …

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Teas of the World: Japanese Teas, Round 3

And here’s still more teas from Japan (continued from Round 1 and Round 2): Maccha or Matcha — Powdered gyokuro whisked into water. It used to be reserved for the Japanese tea ceremony, but recently people began drinking it as an everyday tea and using it in cookies, cakes, and ice cream. See Matcha vs …

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Gyokuro Face-off

Gyokuro is a tea that appeals to those tea drinkers who want high quality but also to those who want to go beyond the basics. It is considered the finest of the green teas grown and processed in Japan. Small wonder, then, when a tea gourmand orders a vendor’s version and is very particular about …

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The Growing Popularity of Matcha

When I began exploring tea and tea culture about seven years ago the only thing I knew about matcha was that it was a powdered Japanese green tea used mainly in the Japanese tea ceremony. While it may have had other uses in Japan and elsewhere, here in the U.S., as far as I was …

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The Many Moods of Sencha

As I mentioned to my esteemed editor when I proposed this article, some of the worst teas I've ever tasted were sencha. On the other hand, some of the best teas I've ever had the pleasure to sample were sencha. Which is something that could probably be said about many varieties of tea - Assam …

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Making Sense of Sencha

Making sense of Sencha (a style of Japanese green tea) can be a bit tricky for many of us tea drinkers used to Indian, Ceylonian, African, and Chinese teas. Where tea is concerned, Japanese teas seem a world unto themselves. Processing Sencha is the “secret of its success” for the most part. The first Senchas …

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Review — Genmaicha Tea

The Subject: Genmaicha Tea from The English Tea Store. Water temperature: 180° F Steeping time: 3 minutes Tea type: Green (Japanese) Scents, flavorings, etc.: Toasted rice kernels Aroma, dry: Planty, grassy green tea aroma with toasty rice overtones Aroma in the cup, plain: Planty, grassy green tea aroma with toasty rice overtones Taste, plain: Planty, …

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Green Tea to Go

The ideal tea situation for me means sitting at my table outside, listening to birds chirp as I pour small cups from my cast iron tea pot, the leaves having plenty of room for their gentle unfurling and floating. But of course, the reality quite often falls short of the ideal, and I’ve got to …

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