Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: Den’s Tea
Houji-Genmaicha consists of the two harmonious yet slightly contrasting taste components. It is a good alternative to sweetened coffee. It offers a comfortable toasty aroma both from roasted leaf and brown rice. The Genmai (roasted brown rice) sweetens the roasted Bancha leaves.
Learn more about this tea here.
Sometimes, it’s hard to get what you want in this world. Sometimes, I want genmaicha at 10 o’clock at night, but I also want a good roasty, toasty, houjicha. Thank goodness for Den’s Tea. They truly have thought of everything. Now I can have my tea and drink it too.
I used my 12oz tokoname kyusu for this one. Probably overleafing it, I intitally used my typical green tea temperature at 175, but at 3 minutes, the flavor was a bit muted. I punched up the temperature to about 190, taking care to not scorch the leaves by leaving the lid uncovered. Three minutes later – I was in tea bliss. The usual clover honey sweetness and toasted barley notes of the houjicha blended so well with the rice, I couldn’t tell where it ends and I begin. There was a touch of cinnamon spice warmth to round out the cup. I should have known that a little hotter water could coax out the houji from the cha.
This tea is really the best or both worlds. It’s got the fresh-toasted rice flavor from the genmai, and it’s got the roasty flavor of houjicha. To be honest, the bancha used is not the best houjicha base I have ever tasted, but paired with the toasted rice, it makes for an amazing pairing to almost any meal, and as a great bedtime sipper.