Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: Aiya
Matcha Infused Genmaicha is a traditional Japanese Sencha blended with toasted brown rice and premium Matcha green tea. The refreshing flavor of Sencha combined with the nutty flavor of toasted brown rice, plus the resilient color and mild sweetness of Matcha make this tea distinctly delightful.
Learn more about this tea here.
Having previously tried Aiya’s Organic Matcha Infused Genmaicha, I was happy to have this opportunity to try this: their conventionally grown Matcha Infused Genmaicha Green Tea, not only to compare my tasting notes from the two teas, but also to experience more of Aiya’s exceptionally high quality tea!
The dry leaf smells a lot more vegetative than I expected … I noticed very little of a toasted rice scent and more of a leafy/grassy green scent with notes of warm, nutty toasted rice in the background. Once brewed, however, the toasted rice notes really came forward! My kitchen was filled with the deliciously roasty-toasty scent of genmaicha, and my mouth began to water as I anticipated my first sip.
Similar to the Organic Matcha Infused Genmaicha from Aiya, I noticed that the brewed tea did not have a cloudy appearance, nor was there Matcha sediment at the bottom of the cup or the teapot. I also noticed when I measured the Genmaicha into my teapot, that there wasn’t a lot of loose powder to the dry leaf. Usually, with Genmaicha blends that have been enhanced with Matcha, there is a powdering of green dust as well as a cloudy cup of tea. This is one area where this tea from Aiya is remarkably different from other Genmaicha teas of this sort.
The flavor is so lovely! No wonder this tea won second place in the North American Tea Championship. This is deliciously sweet, nutty, and warm! Genmaicha usually evokes thoughts of autumn for me because of its warm, roasty-toasty taste, and this experience is no different. And because I am hoping for a speedy spring and summer so that I can enjoy autumn once more, my thoughts of autumn this afternoon are definitely welcome!
But there is also a freshness to the taste, courtesy of the Japanese Sencha base. The green tea tastes sweet, grassy, and has just a hint of savory bitterness that sort of perks the palate up and keeps the flavor interesting. I taste the sweet notes of the Matcha as well, and there is the slightest creamy note from the Matcha which is quite a nice complement to the warm, toasty rice flavor.
I found this experience with the conventionally grown Matcha Infused Genmaicha to be similar to that of the Organic variety, but I think that the flavors here might be a little less distinct. The tones of the rice, the savory quality of the Sencha and the sweet, creamy notes of the Matcha are less defined here, providing a more homogenized flavor that is at once sweet, savory, warm, toasty and creamy, with the toasty rice notes standing out as the strongest notes, and the savory notes lingering on the tongue in the aftertaste. And to tell the truth, I enjoyed both teas very much, and this experience was not so unlike the other that I would choose the other over this one based solely on taste alone. However, I probably would choose the organic because it is organic. Both teas are of excellent quality and superior taste!