Review of Japanese Green Tea

8 of 103 of 53 of 565 of 100

As the other reviewers mentioned, ignore the directions. I prepared the tea using 8 ounces of 175°F water for four minutes (which is a bit longer than is generally suggested for green teas, but I find I like it that way).

The tea in the square, nylon bag is chopped, but not as finely as most bagged tea and is mixed with a bit of matcha. As it brews, it smells like fresh, chopped plants. Not grassy, but almost like the smell of weeding a garden or picking beans. The color of the liquor is a bright, mossy green.

While the flavor is extremely mild, I'm not sure that "weak" is exactly right. There's a really sweet taste and a vegetal character similar to mild spinach. The "seafood" flavor of nori that seems to be present in most Japanese teas is detectable, but more into the background than normal and sort of attenuated by the sweeter flavors. There's no bitterness (even the "good" bitterness) at all. As I sip it, there's almost a hint of peppermint. There's a lot of flavor, just not the balance that belongs in Japanese tea.

Since this tea is manufactured by ITO EN for Costco, I have a hard time believing that the flavor profile is unintentional. I rather suspect that this tea is blended to appeal to those wanting something better than grocery store tea, but are nevertheless unaccustomed to Japanese green tea. Though I can only describe the flavor as "nice", it's not particularly satisfying.

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