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Tamaryokucha (Guricha) Green Tea (Japan)



One day, all the Oita temple monks had seaweed soup for lunch. However, one of the monks noticed Lao Cha was solemnly sipping tea by the window. 

— Sensei, won't you join us for lunch? — Asked the monk.

— This tea is so savory. I'm getting all the nutrients I need just from one cup. There's profound saltiness, nuttiness, and even some sweetness for dessert! 


Tamaryokucha is known for its rich umami and soothing sweetness. Its deep aroma will indulge you in notes of toasted cashews and sappy mangoes when you open it, and the tea taste is savory with hints of Brussels sprouts, magnolia flowers, and a long, mouthwatering, nutty finish. Sencha enthusiasts that look for a slightly more robust alternative will surely enjoy the caramelized and toasted notes with hints of berries from our Tamaryokucha. 

The name of this craft tea translates as coiled green tea. Indeed, the short curly leaves are an iconic part of Tamaryokucha. It is sometimes also called Guricha. This deep steamed tea (fukamushi) is later slightly baked. It helps to increase the flavor and aroma, making the tea sweet and smooth.

This craft tea comes from the year's first harvest in Oita at the beginning of May. This organic fukamushi Tamaryokucha is made entirely from the Yabukita cultivar. Workers steam the leaves for much longer than usual, resulting in particularly strong sweetness and umami. As soon as you open the tea bag, the sweet perfume of this premium tea will capture you. The notes of caramelized nuts intertwine with a hint of mango. Its deep jade color and pretty curly leaves (typical of tamaryokucha) are also impressive. In your cup, the tea will have a beautiful deep green color. Sweet, with only a hint of bitterness and refreshing, you will enjoy its nutty aroma, strong umami, and subtle jasmine undertones. Contrary to sencha, you can brew this tamaryokucha in only 30 seconds.

Oita prefecture is on the eastern part of Kyushu island. On one end, it faces the Inland Sea, and the large Aso caldera is at its back. Tea production exists in various areas, from forests side to mountainous zones. The history of green tea production in Oita goes back to the Edo period. Japanese black tea (koucha) and pan-fried green tea are among its specialties. More recently, there have been substantial efforts in land reclamation in the northern part of Oita. That had allowed the area to increase its green tea production when foreign black tea began to take hold in Japan.

This craft tea can be rebrewed up to 3 times. Rebrewing time should be the same as in previous brews. You need, however, to use hotter water.


Brewing guidelines:

     165℉ / 75℃ for the first infusion; Keep raising water temperature for subsequent infusions    

  1g per 60ml 

   1-2min for the first infusion; then 30sec; +15 for each subsequent infusion 

Customer Reviews

Based on 4 reviews
Ed V

I purchased this Tamaryokucha a couple of weeks back and finally got around to trying it this morning. My review could be summed up in the one word WOW! I am a big fan of Japanese green teas and drink Senchas and Gyokuros regularly. I love them. And this Tamaryokucha is right up there at the top with the best of them. First of all, I pretty much followed the brewing instructions on the website and not the generic green tea instructions on the bag. I started the first brew (4.25g in 225ml... a little heavy) at 70C/158F (which was a little lower than the recommended 165F) for 30 sec. The leaves smelled delicious both dry and wet. And the tea was about as smooth as a Japanese green can get... almost too smooth. It might benefit from those extra few degrees to 165F or maybe a slightly longer steep (45 sec). But don't get me wrong, the tea was excellent... sweet, umami, no bitterness, no astringency. Second steep was at 75C/167F and was richer in color (beautiful jade green) and taste. Third steep was at 80C/176F and was every bit as good as the second in both color, aroma and taste. As a matter of fact, the third steep was so good that I decided to push it to a fourth. This time I kept the temp at 80C/176F and lengthened the steep time to 60 sec. Again an excellent cup of tea. I was temped to go for five but decided four was enough. To sum it up... again WOW! You won't go wrong with this tea. And it is organic to boot.

Tea Friend Tim
Amazing example of Japanese green tea

As this was my fourth Japanese tea of the day (and first of the day from Path of Cha), I was expecting an enjoyable but not necessarily stand out brew: after a trio of other tasty green teas, I did not anticipate the flavors standing out too strongly. But they did, and WOW!!! Incredible umami and vegetal sweetness were strong, making for a standout cup of tea. While most Japanese green teas I have tried tended toward seaweed notes, this tea has notes I would place more toward green bean sweetness with minimal grassiness. Put this on the reorder list!

A lovely treat in tea form.

This Tamaryokucha is wonderful. I am a huge fan of Japanese green teas and this one just hits the jackpot. As soon as I opened the package of the tiny coiled tea leaves I knew I was in for a real treat. Is it possible to be hit with the smell of umami? I thought umami is a taste, but that is really what I felt when I gave the tea the first sniff - this tea is really going to be full of it. Going a little deeper, the tea leaves do have this totally mesmerizing candied cashew aroma, but just as the description notes... it's perfectly balanced with a pleasant saltiness. Once brewed some of the typical grassy, even seaweed-like notes of a quality Japanese green tea come out. Very green but also so full of a variety of flavors and aromas. A lovely treat in tea form.

David Michael White
Super Green Tea

This Green Tea has a delicious as well as powerful scent and flavor! Honestly, I thought I was nearly tea drunk by the time I was starting my second cup. Really amazing tea.