Houjicha : From Farm to Cup
Houjicha: from farm to cup
What better place to source houjicha then from the true birth place of houjicha itself? Uji!
Like all of our teas, our houjicha is grown at a family farm that has been perfecting the art and science of making the best teas for over six generations.
Our houjicha tea is organically grown in Uji, under full sun, it is not shaded like Matcha.
This step in the process is unique to Japan. Other countries that grow and drink green tea do not steam the leaves. The Japanese add in this step to prevent oxidation.
Are you ready for a challenge?
Imagine this: you’ve got a bunch of tea leaves of different sizes and stems of different thicknesses and you’ve got to steam them all evenly. No underdone stems. No overdone little leaves. Oh, and you’ve got less than a minute to do it.
You know how chefs chop everything the exact same size? They do this because they want things to cook evenly. But nature is no chef. She doesn’t give us leaves and stems of the same size. So the tea steamer’s job is that much harder!
Our expert tea steamers handle this challenge with aplomb, and we are proud of the skill they have cultivated to bring you perfectly steamed tea leaves.
No machine can match their skill.
Kneading & Shaping
The tea leaves are then kneaded and shaped into tiny needles. This multi-stage process ensures a uniform moisture content and gently breaks down the cell walls of the tea to ensure maximum nutrient density and flavor in the brewed tea.
Here’s where the magic happens. When these little needles of tea are roasted, it brings out such a beautiful flavor and color. The rolled leaves turn from green to an amber brown. The flavor is mellowed so it doesn’t have the “bite” of unroasted tea (that bite is tannins, and houjicha has fewer tannins than unroasted tea.) The result is a rich and nutty flavor that is perfect to drink at any time. The tea may then be left whole or ground into a powder for lattes and cooking.