Newsletter

Introducing Subscriptions

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These days seem to stretch on forever, no respite in sight. I sometimes find myself gazing out of a window, only to realize my jaw had been clenched the entire time. Make sure to stretch.If you or a loved one are in need of self-care, consider a green tea subscription, which arrives at your doorstep each month with new teas, a note from me, and information regarding the teas' terroir, producer, and cultivar. It is a small delight, but sometimes that is all we need to pull ourselves out of the chaos of the world around us.(For gifts, add your gift note in...

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Storing Teas & How to Prepare Ceremonial Matcha

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Here in California and along the Pacific Northwest, wildfires continue to rage, consuming everything in sight and leaving the air heavy with smoke. Over the weekend, Typhoon Haishen passed through Japan, disrupting travel and shipments (including September's shipment of matcha, which is luckily unharmed). It can sometimes feel as if the world is ending, and yet, we awake with new ideas and perspectives each day. Life continues on.Today is Chōyō no Sekku, an auspicious day in Japan because of the date's doubles 9s (9/9). Freshly cut chrysanthemums—an autumn flower—are displayed in homes and worn on clothing as a symbol of good fortune. The day...

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Japanese Oolongs & Several Shop Updates

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You may be surprised that this year's collection includes an oolong from Japan, and indeed, people that visit the shop often ask if our oolong is from elsewhere. Japanese oolongs are limited in production and rarely leave the country, but they are growing in popularity and I expect they will become easier to find.Why the new interest in oolong tea in Japan? The explosive growth in milk tea and boba is one part of the explanation; the other is that it has been historically desirable to import well-crafted Taiwanese oolongs. As Japanese teas become better known outside the country, producers...

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Release of Hoshinotsuyu Matcha

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Like high quality coffee, matcha begins to oxidize the moment the green tea leaves are ground into very fine powder (approximately 5-10 microns, which is 0.001mm). Ceremonial grade matcha should be consumed within a month of breaking the airtight seal and stored in the fridge whenever you are not using it. Make sure that your matcha is vibrantly green, which is both a testament to the levels of umami and how fresh the matcha is.Shipments from Japan remain difficult, and it currently takes nearly 3 weeks from order for a package to arrive in San Francisco. Nevertheless, we continue to import our matcha in...

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Sora and Koushun

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You may remember a green tea cultivar that I shared at the beginning of last year called sora. It was an early favorite and sold out quickly; when I asked the producer if she had any more that she could ship overseas, she sadly informed me that she was completely sold out too. She did, however, introduce me to the kōshun cultivar that we shared by the name Nemuri Hime. Coming from the same 9th generation producer in Shizuoka, I am thrilled to share the return of both sora and kōshun as part of our 2020 sencha collection. We made...

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