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I spent the morning updating my cupboard. I haven’t really been drinking much tea since I was last here, but I did sign up for the Obubu tea club before visiting their farm in Wazuka, Japan last fall. My husband and I got married last October and took a trip to Japan for 18 days for our honeymoon. Of course, I had to visit a tea plantation while I was there! It was a great experience, the staff were all wonderful and the setting gorgeous. Plus we got to sample several teas! Would definitely recommend the tour if you are ever in the area.

So anyway, I now have a ridiculous stash of Obubu teas, mostly from the subscription box which is a generous amount of tea. Please feel free to send me a message if you’d like to try a sampling of their teas!

Had a lazy session with this tea on the couch (or tried to, as the pugs tried their best to sit in my lap…). I used a ~200ml kyusu that I also picked up in Japan and did three steeps of 60s, 10s, and 30s.

This is a shaded tea, so it has a somewhat intense and umami vegetal flavor. The first steep especially had a nice intensity, and strong spinach and cooked green bean notes. It felt very thick and silky on the tongue, with a nice creamy quality. There was a touch of pleasant bitterness and light astringency at the tail end of the sip, and a lingering umami aftertaste on my tongue. As it cooled, I picked up more seaweed notes and perhaps a hint of apricot.

The second steep was lighter and sweeter, still with the same vegetal notes but with less intensity. The third steep was a bit too light, I should have steeped it longer than I did. The vegetal notes gave way to a grassier flavor, and it was the sweetest of the three steeps.

Definitely a very satisfying tea, with a nice savory vegetal flavor up front giving way to more sweetness in later steeps. It reminded me how much I love Japanese teas! I’m not going to rate it for now, as I’ve been out of practice so I don’t have a good point of reference.

(here’s a couple of Instagram posts from our Obubu trip):
https://www.instagram.com/p/B4gUNC-gTBt/
https://www.instagram.com/p/B4gVwpEAUyS/

Flavors: Apricot, Astringent, Bitter, Creamy, Grass, Green Beans, Seaweed, Spinach, Sweet, Thick, Umami

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 5 g 7 OZ / 200 ML
Leafhopper

Congratulations on your wedding, if I haven’t said that before. :) That sounds like an amazing trip!

Cameron B.

Thank you, we had a great time! Japan has always been on my list. :)

Martin Bednář

What a wonderful place to spend honeymoon! Happy times!

Mastress Alita

Japan has always been on my list, too! (My BFF has been several times, but has he ever taken me?! It’s probably the one thorn of contention between us, heh). I have a few Obubu teas via Yunomi (I think right now my houjicha and genmaicha stash are both from them). I know I’ve also sampled a houjicha before that was made from this sencha, and I was surprised I got that slight “seaweedy” taste coming through the roast, which I’d never had in a houjicha before.

Cameron B.

@Martin – It was lovely! We’re definitely planning to go back.

@Mastress AlitaBFF no more! ;) I’m not surprised about the seaweed taste, as this is a fairly umami-packed tea! I’ll definitely be breaking out the houjicha soon with the weather getting cooler.

Todd

@Mastress Alita We can certainly remedy that situation some time after all this COVID stuff. <3

ashmanra

Congratulations! That is awesome!

tea-sipper

Happy anniversary whenever that may fall this month. :D

Cameron B.

@ashmanra – Thank you! :D

@teasipper – Thank you, it was yesterday in fact! We’re not celebratory people so we didn’t do anything. :P

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Comments

Leafhopper

Congratulations on your wedding, if I haven’t said that before. :) That sounds like an amazing trip!

Cameron B.

Thank you, we had a great time! Japan has always been on my list. :)

Martin Bednář

What a wonderful place to spend honeymoon! Happy times!

Mastress Alita

Japan has always been on my list, too! (My BFF has been several times, but has he ever taken me?! It’s probably the one thorn of contention between us, heh). I have a few Obubu teas via Yunomi (I think right now my houjicha and genmaicha stash are both from them). I know I’ve also sampled a houjicha before that was made from this sencha, and I was surprised I got that slight “seaweedy” taste coming through the roast, which I’d never had in a houjicha before.

Cameron B.

@Martin – It was lovely! We’re definitely planning to go back.

@Mastress AlitaBFF no more! ;) I’m not surprised about the seaweed taste, as this is a fairly umami-packed tea! I’ll definitely be breaking out the houjicha soon with the weather getting cooler.

Todd

@Mastress Alita We can certainly remedy that situation some time after all this COVID stuff. <3

ashmanra

Congratulations! That is awesome!

tea-sipper

Happy anniversary whenever that may fall this month. :D

Cameron B.

@ashmanra – Thank you! :D

@teasipper – Thank you, it was yesterday in fact! We’re not celebratory people so we didn’t do anything. :P

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Profile

Bio

Hi, I’m Cameron! I’m a 30-something software engineer currently living in Austin, Texas with my husband and our two pugs, Gobo and Ume. I tend to cycle between my different hobbies, and they include knitting, video games, board games, miniature painting, bento, baking, and – of course – TEA! But really, what I’m best at is collecting hobby-related things… ;)

~ 2023 SIPDOWN CHALLENGE! ~
- January Sipdowns: 36
- Total 2023 Sipdowns: 36

I prefer my tea lukewarm or at room temperature and without milk or sugar. I steep Western style, and fluctuate between using mugs or teapots with small cups depending on the season. Occasionally I’ll brew Gongfu style when I’m in the mood. I’ll also often use a kyusu for Japanese teas.

I am always up for a swap! Just let me know if you’d like to try something in my cupboard.

Tea Preferences:
I enjoy both flavored and unflavored teas in many forms. These days, I drink mostly flavored teas, and I tend to gravitate most toward black, green, oolong, and herbal varieties. I do have a special fondness for straight Japanese green teas, however. I also enjoy maté, rooibos, and honeybush. I love matcha and drink it often! Fruit tisanes are not a favorite, but I’m always willing to try them.

I do not sweeten my teas, and pre-sweetened teas are usually too sweet for me. I also do not enjoy stevia.

Fruit: All of them! My ‘go-to’s tend to be in the red fruits, stonefruit, or citrus spectra. I also really love apple, banana, berry, fig, lychee, melon, pear, and rhubarb flavors. Tropical fruits aren’t among my favorites, but I still enjoy them once in a while – especially passionfruit, mango, and pineapple. I am not generally a fan of coconut in tea, though there are some exceptions.

Dessert: I love creamy vanilla and marshmallow flavors, along with anything in the caramel family such as butterscotch, toffee, or maple. Chocolate is also a favorite, though I’m often disappointed by it in tea. And don’t forget anything buttery, cakey, or cookie-y!

Floral: I’m a little bit more particular in this category. I very much enjoy jasmine, even strong jasmine, along with sakura, chamomile, and elderflower. Osmanthus is also a favorite of mine. But I’m not crazy about rose or lavender flavors, and I prefer hibiscus in moderation only.

Spices: I don’t generally find myself drawn to masala chai, but I do enjoy spices combined with other flavors. My favorite spices are the warm ones, especially cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, and cardamom. A bit of heat from black pepper or chili is okay too, as long as it’s not overwhelming! Ginger can be a lovely accent, but I find it difficult to drink as a starring flavor.

Aromatics: I’m obsessed with Earl Grey! I also love cooling flavors such as mint (especially spearmint), pine, juniper, and eucalyptus. I am not a fan of strong rosemary or sage in tea.

Favorite Companies:
3 Leaf
Bird & Blend
Dammann Frères
Harney & Sons
Kusmi
Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms
Lupicia
Simpson & Vail
Taiwan Tea Crafts
TeaVivre

Tea Rating Scale:
90-100: Outstanding! Permanent cupboard resident
80-89: Great – a possible staple
70-79: Good, but I wouldn’t buy it
60-69: It’s decent
50-59: Meh… I may or may not have finished the cup
40-49: Ick. Couldn’t finish it.
00-39: Repulsive, I spat it out

I will sometimes refrain from rating a tea if I feel I’m too biased due to my personal dislikes, or if I suspect the sample has been compromised by age or scent contamination.

Cupboard Spreadsheet:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1ZEuKf1-ppR-VXajO4vV39zU1N3zjFJteEPAynqD2yl0/edit?usp=sharing

Location

Austin, Texas

Website

https://www.instagram.com/tea...

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