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Reiterpallasch
Nov 3, 2010

strength accessories?

Fun Shoe

anakha posted:

I'll be travelling to Tokyo at the end of the month, and I'd like to stock up on sencha and hojicha while I'm there. I prefer cold-brewing my loose-leaf tea, so I'm not sure that getting the higher-end stuff will be worth it, though.

Do you guys have any shop or brand recommendations? Thanks!

Go to any of the high-end department stores and look for the tea counter in the basement where all the food stalls are--the "flagship" department stores (Isetan in Shinjuku, Mitsukoshi in Ginza, probably some other ones) carry very good teas there. a brand i buy a lot of is Marukyu Koyamaen, a Kyoto-based tea concern that should be distributed at most high-end department stores in Tokyo; they specialize in shaded teas but also have a bunch of consistently blended, reasonably priced senchas and kabuses.

If you wanna nerd out hardcore, visit a tea shop called Chachanoma, close to Harajuku station. They specialize in single-estate, unblended teas sold by cultivar, which is unusual in the world of Japanese teas (now dominated by Yabukita cultivar monoculture, except in high-end shaded teas). You can try and taste and compare, say, a high-end Yabukita with Shizuoka 7132 with Koushun there. Plus the sweets and shaved ices are fantastic.

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anakha
Sep 16, 2009


Say 'Thank you, Ershin'.

Say it.



Reiterpallasch posted:

Go to any of the high-end department stores and look for the tea counter in the basement where all the food stalls are--the "flagship" department stores (Isetan in Shinjuku, Mitsukoshi in Ginza, probably some other ones) carry very good teas there. a brand i buy a lot of is Marukyu Koyamaen, a Kyoto-based tea concern that should be distributed at most high-end department stores in Tokyo; they specialize in shaded teas but also have a bunch of consistently blended, reasonably priced senchas and kabuses.

If you wanna nerd out hardcore, visit a tea shop called Chachanoma, close to Harajuku station. They specialize in single-estate, unblended teas sold by cultivar, which is unusual in the world of Japanese teas (now dominated by Yabukita cultivar monoculture, except in high-end shaded teas). You can try and taste and compare, say, a high-end Yabukita with Shizuoka 7132 with Koushun there. Plus the sweets and shaved ices are fantastic.

Thanks a lot for the tip!

Truck Stop Daddy
Apr 17, 2013


Muldoon

Taobao order finally shipped today! Stuff looks nice in the photos. The agent or I seem to have messed up a bit tho. Instead of ordering 250g of shui xian and 250g of shui jin gui, I've ended up buying half a kilo of shui xian... Might be a bit too much...

Truck Stop Daddy
Apr 17, 2013


Muldoon

Got my taobao order today! Everything made it here in one piece, and the stuff seems nice. Picked up some hand painted ceramics and tea. Wastebowl, pitcher, tea plate/boat and a pair of cups + 500g Shui Xian. Drinking it now and it seems nice. Huge leaves and not a whole lot of broken bits. Itís still way too much for me, I want to drink other stuff than Shui Xian this year...

Truck Stop Daddy fucked around with this message at Mar 1, 2019 around 08:50

Jhet
Jun 3, 2013


That all looks nice.

0.5kg is a lot? I shudder at that thought. Maybe a lot of one tea, but I won't show you my drawer. When I do somehow over order I just weight out small bags 25g-100g and give them away to people who might like them with little handwritten instructions.

Truck Stop Daddy
Apr 17, 2013


Muldoon

Jhet posted:

That all looks nice.

0.5kg is a lot? I shudder at that thought. Maybe a lot of one tea, but I won't show you my drawer. When I do somehow over order I just weight out small bags 25g-100g and give them away to people who might like them with little handwritten instructions.

Probably going to give some of it away. Had originally ordered 250g Shui Xian and 250g Shui Jin gui for variety. Already have some kilos of tea to drink, some cakes and such... Itís a luxury problem.

Took more than a month to get the stuff, but Chinese New Year was in there delaying stuff. So I guess you can expect to get your stuff in two weeks usually. Didnít pay customs either, even though correct price was on the packaging??? Perhaps it was included in the shipping costs. Buying through an agent was easier than expected.

thotsky
Jun 7, 2005

hot to trot


If you're in Oslo I'd trade you some really good Bai Hao and some really bad Lychee Black.

Rabbit Hill
Mar 11, 2009

God knows what lives in me in place of me.

Grimey Drawer

Biomute posted:

some really bad Lychee Black.

Is that from Harney & Sons, by any chance? I recently ordered a 7.5 oz tin of their Lychee Black on a complete whim (why??) and just had my first cup this morning -- it smells like cloying floral perfume and doesn't taste much better.

Truck Stop Daddy
Apr 17, 2013


Muldoon

Biomute posted:

If you're in Oslo I'd trade you some really good Bai Hao and some really bad Lychee Black.

Iím in Nordland, so Iím 1000 km off... Thanks for the offer though! Could always throw some of it in the mail I guess

Truck Stop Daddy fucked around with this message at Feb 28, 2019 around 19:30

thotsky
Jun 7, 2005

hot to trot


Rabbit Hill posted:

Is that from Harney & Sons, by any chance? I recently ordered a 7.5 oz tin of their Lychee Black on a complete whim (why??) and just had my first cup this morning -- it smells like cloying floral perfume and doesn't taste much better.

Nah, Teavivre. The tea is by far the most broken up and low grade I have had from them, but I can dig some Sri Lankan tea dust so that's not really the issue; it's the synthetic perfumed lychee flavor/smell. It's really only drinkable as ice tea with lots of sugar and lemon if you ask me.

stealie72
Jan 10, 2007

Their eyes locked and suddenly there was the sound of breaking glass.


Found out that there is a tea store near a client of mine, so got a couple to try.

I was excited to try pu-erh, but was a little suspicious when it was completely loose leaf. It tastes like a really good version of the tea at my favorite dim sum place, but is not remotely earthy or any of the other scary things that I've read about it. Did I end up with a lite version?

https://tealabcle.com/pu-erh-organic/

chunkles
Aug 14, 2005

I tell you the truth: one of you chumps will betray me


I've had some good loose leaf pu erh that is not incredibly strongly flavored, if you like it keep drinking it. The color on that looks right anyway

That said you can definitely get some powerful earthy cakes if you want

effika
Jun 19, 2005
Birds do not want you to know any more than you already do.

Finally got around to trying the Yunnan FOP black tea that Upton included in my last rooibos order. (Getting to drink caffeine like once a month isn't fun.)

It is delicious and smooth, a bit earthy/grainy with a touch of smoke, and paired excellently with the Pirouette chocolate wafer stick thingy I dunked into it. Nice clean mouthfeel without being too astringent.

A++ will drink again in 4-6 weeks.

hope and vaseline
Feb 13, 2001



Beautiful Taiwan Tea haul: 2 oz each of Ali Shan, Li Shan (both winter 2018), Muzha TGY, and charcoal roasted Yushan. Really excited to dig into this as its been a couple of years since the last time I got some gaoshan! Having a tasting with a friend tomorrow and I'll report back on anything exciting from this batch.

ntan1
Apr 29, 2009

sempai noticed me


Reiterpallasch posted:

Go to any of the high-end department stores and look for the tea counter in the basement where all the food stalls are--the "flagship" department stores (Isetan in Shinjuku, Mitsukoshi in Ginza, probably some other ones) carry very good teas there. a brand i buy a lot of is Marukyu Koyamaen, a Kyoto-based tea concern that should be distributed at most high-end department stores in Tokyo; they specialize in shaded teas but also have a bunch of consistently blended, reasonably priced senchas and kabuses.

This is a month late but no department store in Tokyo sells Marukyu Koyamaen. The closest would be Kyoto.

The Shinjuku Isetan holds Kanbayashi, which is an Edo-established producer Maccha (and notably just about as famous), but my experience with Kanbayashi sencha and maccha is that Koyamaen is more balanced and complex.
Ginza Mitsukoshi holds Ippodo, which produces a consistent sencha that I buy, but I still like Koyamaen even more. It's worth noting that I like Ippodo more than Kanbayashi
Daimaru in Tokyo has Fukujuen, which is also well established, but I like Ippodo more.
Takashimaya in Nihonbashi has Yamamotoyama, which likes to produce nori as well. However, it's also not as good as Ippodo.

In any case, the point is that Koyamaen is harder than you think to get in Tokyo, and that I suppose mail ordering it is the best.

It's also worth noting that Tsujiri (not to be confused with the 4-5 other stores also called Tsujiri) now has a store in Ginza, and I have been meaning to try their maccha and sencha for a while.

gamingCaffeinator
Sep 6, 2010

I shall sing you the song of my people.


ntan1 posted:

This is a month late but no department store in Tokyo sells Marukyu Koyamaen. The closest would be Kyoto.

The Shinjuku Isetan holds Kanbayashi, which is an Edo-established producer Maccha (and notably just about as famous), but my experience with Kanbayashi sencha and maccha is that Koyamaen is more balanced and complex.
Ginza Mitsukoshi holds Ippodo, which produces a consistent sencha that I buy, but I still like Koyamaen even more. It's worth noting that I like Ippodo more than Kanbayashi
Daimaru in Tokyo has Fukujuen, which is also well established, but I like Ippodo more.
Takashimaya in Nihonbashi has Yamamotoyama, which likes to produce nori as well. However, it's also not as good as Ippodo.

In any case, the point is that Koyamaen is harder than you think to get in Tokyo, and that I suppose mail ordering it is the best.

It's also worth noting that Tsujiri (not to be confused with the 4-5 other stores also called Tsujiri) now has a store in Ginza, and I have been meaning to try their maccha and sencha for a while.

I love Yamamotoyama's sencha. A little Japanese cafe in Denver serves it. It was my first experience with sencha though, so I might be biased.

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ntan1
Apr 29, 2009

sempai noticed me


They're good. A solid flagship department store isn't going to sell bad tea in Japan.

The differences between those five different brands I mentioned isn't going to be significant unless you drink Japanese green tea every day, and buying based on the quality that they advertise (they're fair with this) will end up being fine.

Even as a person who drinks green tea every day the difference is subtle.

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