Updated: May. 25, 2013
Loose-leaf guricha or tamaryokucha, showing the curved shape of the leaves. Pictured here is the steamed variety.
The pan-fired version of guricha is called kama-guri, kama-iri-cha, or kama-iri-sei-cha tamaryoku. This tea is much more similar in character to Chinese pan-fired green teas. It originated as an export product in the 1930's, sold primarily to Muslim countries, which historically consume Chinese-type green teas.
The steamed version is called mushi-guri or mushi-sei-cha tamaryoku, and is similar in overall character to sencha; it was developed by skipping a step in the production process of sencha, leading to a similar-looking curved appearance to the finished leaf. The steamed version is more widely available in Western countries, but is not common there. It tends to be a premium-priced product.
Guricha tends to be produced on Kyushu island, such as in Saga prefecture. Mushi-guricha is also produced in Shizuoka. Small amounts have also recently begun to be produced in China.
1. Le Tamaryoku-cha 玉緑茶 (ou guri-cha ぐり茶), Sommelier en thé japonais (French language), Nov. 11, 2009.
The notion of the "best" Guricha is subjective, because different people have different tastes. We present the most often-rated and highest-rated teas in this category, and allow you to draw your own conclusions.
Most Often-Rated Teas
Examples of Guricha
The following are examples of the 5 selections of Guricha in our database.