Reviews of Teas & Herbal Teas from Japan

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D. Gray

(14 reviews)
Picture of Furyu: Awa Bancha

Furyu: Awa Bancha from Yunomi

Style: Bancha – Region: Tokushima, Japan

90 / 100 Aroma: 10/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 3/5
Jul. 13th, 2017

This is a very curious tea. It is not aged or fermented in the typical manner in which teas are aged or fermented. Instead, the leaves are pickled. (Yes, you read that right.) You can actually smell this right away when opening a package of the tea leaves. They smell a lot like stuffed grape leaves, and the scent is in...

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Picture of Green Tea (Ato-bi process)

Green Tea (Ato-bi process) from ITO EN

Style: Green Tea – Region: Japan

95 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 11th, 2017

This is some truly delicious green tea. It took me a while to brew it just right. But, with 80C water, with 3/4 tsp of leaves, brewing for 2 minutes 30 seconds, in a 4 oz gaiwan, increasing the time by 30 seconds each brewing, it was delicious. The scent is creamy, sweet, and vegetal. It's not as sweet as gyokuro (shad...

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Picture of Sencha (Sen-cha), Loose-leaf

Sencha (Sen-cha), Loose-leaf from Yamamotoyama

Style: Sencha – Region: Japan

75 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 10th, 2017

This is one of my go-to green teas for daily drinking. It has a vegetal flavor with some greener, sweeter hints, but really isn't as sweet as fukamushi (green tea with a longer steaming period) or gyokuro (green tea that's shaded before harvesting). But, I like how unobtrusive it is. It's easy to drink this as a drink ...

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Picture of Hoji-cha, Roasted Green Tea (Loose)

Hoji-cha, Roasted Green Tea (Loose) from Yamamotoyama

Style: Hojicha – Region: Japan

80 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 10th, 2017

This tea has a beautiful, roasted scent and flavor. Depending upon how it's brewed, sometimes I taste hints of vegetal green tea. Other times, it's largely a roasted flavor without any bitterness and only a slight astringency, if any. It really reminds me of autumn, and it imparts this relaxing feeling that really help...

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Jason Rowlands

(4 reviews)
Picture of Organic Japanese Sencha

Organic Japanese Sencha from DAVIDsTEA

Style: Sencha – Region: Shizuoka, Japan

79 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 5/5
Jul. 9th, 2017

Of all the pure teas I've gotten from David's, this is the first one to not stand out from the crowd. It is not a bad tea at all. Like mostly everything I've tried at David's, it is above average. It is just not as impressive as some of the other Greens and Oolongs I have purchased there. This is one of the lowest p...

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Teuvo

(31 reviews)
Picture of Kabuse Cha

Kabuse Cha from Unami

Style: Kabusecha – Region: Japan

65 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 2/5
Jul. 1st, 2017

I took the dégustation comparée (comparative tasting) of three green teas of a higher quality. This is one of the three I was served.
I got a zhong with dry leaves in it, a small cup, and a thermos of water.
I was recommended to finish with this tea, so I tasted this one last.

The leaves are very dark green and ...

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Alex Zorach

(1311 reviews)
Picture of Organic Karigane

Organic Karigane from Mighty Leaf Tea

Style: Kukicha – Region: Japan

76 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
May. 13th, 2017

Thank you to Mighty Leaf for this sample! Overall I haven't been as impressed with the green teas from Mighty Leaf as the black ones, but I like this one a bit more. This was a very atypical example of a kukicha / twig tea, much more full-flavored than I expected.

I was intrigued by how the leaf smells...it smells...

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Picture of Organic Sencha

Organic Sencha from Mighty Leaf Tea

Style: Sencha – Region: Japan

58 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 2/5
May. 11th, 2017

Thank you mighty leaf for this sample! This tea had a very pleasant flavor but was nearly aromaless, although what aroma it did have was nice.

Dry leaf initially doesn't smell great, but when I breathe in more deeply, there's a very pleasant smell that suggests sweetness. The leaf looks fairly large and also rathe...

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Difflugia

(39 reviews)
Picture of Organic Decaf Sencha Green Tea Bag

Organic Decaf Sencha Green Tea Bag from Yamamotoyama

Style: Sencha – Region: Japan

65 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Apr. 24th, 2017

This decaf certainly smells delicious. The dry teabag smells just like a sencha should. It's fresh, grassy, and a little seaweed. The tea is fine fannings, almost dust.

The tea steeps a bright green. The aroma, though a bit muted, is vegetal, like raw green beans.

The first taste is a strong, but pleasant bittern...

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Alex Zorach

(1311 reviews)
Picture of Bancha

Bancha from Harney and Sons

Style: Bancha – Region: Japan

82 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Mar. 29th, 2017

This may be the best bancha I've ever tried. It's better than a number of lower-end sencha's I've bought in the U.S.

The dry leaf is green for bancha and has the most delightful aroma, the best yet of any bancha I've tried. It smells a lot like coffee cake, a sort of sweet, baked good smell with hints of cinnamon,...

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Tracy

(4 reviews)
Picture of Sencha Overture

Sencha Overture from Adagio Teas

Style: Sencha – Region: Japan

65 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Mar. 18th, 2017

I'm not a fan of the "grassy" flavored green teas, and this one has that fresh scent without reminding me of newly mown grass. The flavor is medium bodied, when I steep for 3-4 minutes, not overpowering or bitter, A nice green tea for a mostly black and oolong drinker

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Tchuggin' Okie

(83 reviews)
Picture of Natur Pur Bio-Grüner Sencha Tee

Natur Pur Bio-Grüner Sencha Tee from SPAR

Style: Sencha – Region: Japan

60 / 100 Aroma: 5/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Mar. 16th, 2017

Not being experienced specifically with Sencha varieties of green tea, I didn't know what to expect when grabbing a box of this to bring home from Austria. [This tea is sold in SPAR supermarkets, fairly ubiquitous over a lot of Europe and available online.]

I just figured, "organic green tea, should be good". An...

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Alex Zorach

(1311 reviews)
Picture of Kagoshima (Kagoshima Sencha)

Kagoshima (Kagoshima Sencha) from Harney and Sons

Style: Sencha – Region: Kagoshima, Japan

80 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Jan. 9th, 2017

I usually think of tea as being more about the aroma than the flavor, but this tea was intensely flavorful, and I thought its flavor was what made it most interesting and enjoyable.

This tea was very similar overall to the Organic Sencha also sold by Harney & Sons. The main difference I noticed initially was that t...

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Monk

(19 reviews)
Picture of TJ34: Organic KuKi Cha Green Kamakura

TJ34: Organic KuKi Cha Green Kamakura from Upton Tea Imports

Style: Kukicha – Region: Japan

73 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Nov. 23rd, 2016

I just received a package of this Kukicha today, and immediately decided to give it a go.

Lately I've been brewing in a pseudo-gong fu style...using a lidded tasting set as my gaiwan (actually works quite well). But I recently ordered a couple of gaiwans that should be here soon.
Steeped 2 teaspoons in 4 ounces o...

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Tchuggin' Okie

(83 reviews)
Picture of Blueberry Green

Blueberry Green from Murchie's Tea & Coffee Ltd

Style: Flavored Green Tea – Region: Japan

77 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 4/5
Oct. 27th, 2016

Upon seeing this new tea for sale in the Victoria Murchie's store, there was no question I would get it and like it. Murchie's consistently delivers good to great tea, and blueberry is one of my favorite flavors; therefore, I bought a 50-bag box straight up.

The risk was rewarded. The green tea shines through an...

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Virginia Mastromarino

(6 reviews)
Picture of Hoji-cha, Roasted Green Tea (Loose)

Hoji-cha, Roasted Green Tea (Loose) from Yamamotoyama

Style: Hojicha – Region: Japan

90 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Oct. 4th, 2016

This is a very special tea. Its aroma and flavor transport you to magical places. I love this tea.

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spaflam

(166 reviews)
Picture of Japanese Green Tea

Japanese Green Tea from Kirkland Signature / Costco

Style: Green Tea – Region: Japan

40 / 100 Aroma: 4/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 1/5
Aug. 17th, 2016

Meh. I had this at a SPA no less - I guess they buy their green tea bags in bulk from Costco. While this was drinkable, it was by no means enjoyable. On a cold day I guess it beats a cut of hot water? But so weak and non-descript tasting.

Meh.

There are better options out there.
Sometimes, in an attempt to s...

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John Bilsbury

(4 reviews)
Picture of Matcha Japanese Green Tea (Imperial Grade Matcha)

Matcha Japanese Green Tea (Imperial Grade Matcha) from Teavana

Style: Matcha – Region: Japan

73 / 100 Aroma: 7/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 4/5
Jul. 9th, 2016

An acquired taste for some although I like it - not the cheapest tea to buy and not really worth it if youre not into it. Can understand that as the color is not initially appealing to new tasters. I find it better than economy greens which often lack flavor

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Alex Zorach

(1311 reviews)
Picture of Organic Sencha

Organic Sencha from Harney and Sons

Style: Sencha – Region: Japan

83 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 4/5
Apr. 29th, 2016

This was one of the best senchas I've had from a tea company that is not a Japanese company.

It smells amazing! The dry leaf is incredibly aromatic, and the aroma is rich, sweet, and very interesting. It has sweet vegetal notes which quickly develop into a warm, mellow, nutty, and slightly toasty aroma, hinting at ...

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Brytta Sóþword

(289 reviews)
Picture of Hoji-cha, Roasted Green Tea (Loose)

Hoji-cha, Roasted Green Tea (Loose) from Yamamotoyama

Style: Hojicha – Region: Japan

90 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 5/5
Mar. 24th, 2016

This was surprisingly good. The flavor had a nice soothing aroma and taste in a "ah, this is the kind of food adults like" sort of way. It strikes me as a particularly good tea for certain brisk days.

The fact that I like it and that I got a decent size bag of loose leaf for about two and a half dollars makes it one...

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spaflam

(166 reviews)
Picture of Tea of Inquiry (Loose)

Tea of Inquiry (Loose) from Republic of Tea

Style: Genmaicha – Region: Japan

80 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 5/5 Value: 3/5
Mar. 14th, 2016

For a genmaicha (which I enjoy in spring/summer) I really love this one - probably my favorite roasted-toasted brown-rice note-filled tea. Even good over ice - and unsweetened for a true grain-filled experience. I actually love this one - but if you are not a Genmaicha lover - you may not want to try this one. More ...

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Picture of Brown Rice Tea Genmai-cha (16 ct.)

Brown Rice Tea Genmai-cha (16 ct.) from Yamamotoyama

Style: Genmaicha – Region: Japan

60 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 4/5
Mar. 14th, 2016

Super cheap and - if you can get it (try H-Mart or other Asian grocers) it's a good bagged Genmaicha option. Refreshing in summer with a roasty-toasty aroma. Grassy notes - and also a sweetness (I do not get a "Honey Smacks" note).

Can even be OK over ice.

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Picture of Genmaicha

Genmaicha from Harney and Sons

Style: Genmaicha – Region: Japan

50 / 100 Aroma: 6/10 Flavor: 3/5 Value: 2/5
Mar. 14th, 2016

Roasty-Toasty but not worth the price - there are better (and also worse - see my other Gen Mai Cha reviews) versions available. If you are a Gen mai lover (Roasted rice/grain notes) this is a decent choice but no holy grail. Very nice in summer.

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Tchuggin' Okie

(83 reviews)
Picture of Coconut Green Tea

Coconut Green Tea from Trader Joe's

Style: Flavored Green Tea – Region: Japan

83 / 100 Aroma: 9/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 5/5
Feb. 15th, 2016

Even though I like the flavor of coconut -- a lot -- I admit a great deal of skepticism upon learning of the new existence of this tea. Coconut in tea? The idea struck me as one of these "Be different just to be different" deals, destined to go the way of others such as 7Up Gold or Crystal Pepsi in sodas. Maybe it is...

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Alex Zorach

(1311 reviews)
Picture of Japanese Sencha (Sachets)

Japanese Sencha (Sachets) from Harney and Sons

Style: Sencha – Region: Shizuoka, Japan

77 / 100 Aroma: 8/10 Flavor: 4/5 Value: 3/5
Dec. 20th, 2015

An exceptional sencha from a tea bag; without a doubt the best sencha I've ever tried from a tea bag, and better than a lot of examples of loose-leaf tea.

The dry tea bag has a very fresh and pleasing aroma, like loose-leaf sencha of very good quality, suggesting sweetness.

Brews a very light-colored cup with a b...

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