Soocha Tea

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Recent Tasting Notes

78

This is a unique and pleasant tisane that reminds me of nothing so much as toasted nori, in flavour and scent. There’s a light note of complementary sweet nuttiness that rounds the flavour off. It would be an excellent choice for people looking for something caffeine-free that will still provide much of the satisfaction you’d get from a good Japanese green tea.

Flavors: Nori, Nutty, Sweet

Preparation
180 °F / 82 °C 3 min, 30 sec 3 tsp 8 OZ / 250 ML

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drank Barley Sprout by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Gongfu!

Though this tisane has a bit of a cooked leafy green vegetable note that I don’t always love, I found myself craving something just a bit greener for my session today and this ended up being a solid choice as it shares many of the tasting notes that I do tend to enjoy in a nice Chinese or pan-fired green tea. Y’know, for the rare occasions that I venture outside of my Hojicha comfort zone.

It’s fresh with a lighter, bright sugar cane type of sweetness but also packs a bit of a nuttier punch. Roasted chestnuts, hazelnut, and peanut oil on the back end of the sip. The liquor is slick, and free from any bitterness or astringency. I think it’s pretty hard to go wrong here whether you’re a little more green tea adverse (like myself) or a fan of more nutty and vegetal Chinese and Korean green teas.

Tea Photos: https://www.instagram.com/ros_strange/?img_index=1

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Ekv_IC9qBM

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97
drank Yuja Balhyocha by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Ever since TO Tea Festival I’ve fallen in love with this tea.
So much so, in fact, that I couldn’t wait until next year’s festival to restock. It’s rich and citrusy with bold flavours of decadent dark chocolate, charred peanuts, and roasted barley from the Balhyocha itself with a zesty yuzu top note and a very peppery finish. So dynamic, distinct, and delicious! Thankfully, I have a fresh bag to dig into and this charming new teacup to drink it in!!

Tea Photo: https://www.instagram.com/p/CzuKyGaO-qh/

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oaLbwFxyaJ4

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97
drank Yuja Balhyocha by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Already thinking about when I’m going to order more of this…

I had it Western this afternoon and it was just as lovely as it was gongfu! Yuzu notes were a little bit stronger with more of a pithy zest and slight peppery quality that contrasted so well against the deep, deep chocolate notes of the base tea. It’s so impressive to me that this is a completely unflavoured blend. It’s highly aromatic, punchy but natural tasting, and really complex.

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97
drank Yuja Balhyocha by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Gongfu!

This morning’s session. There weren’t a lot of teas that I knew I would be purchasing in advance of attending the festival – I was mostly interested in just sampling and seeing what stood out to me! However, this is the exception; as soon as I saw Soocha Tea would be a vendor I was eager to finally get my hands on this unique fusion of Korean tea and yuzu! It lives up to the anticipation; from the first steep this flavours are intensely rich with deep notes of bittersweet cocoa mixing in such a balanced way with the peppery and zesty bright yuzu rinds. It’s highly dynamic, joyously playful yet still elevated and nuanced. Truthfully, I almost missed leaving my apartment on time this morning because I was so immediately engrossed in the tea. If anything, I regret not getting more in person when I had the chance – it’s that stellar!

Tea Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/CoGFNlnu8Uh/

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=poyUSM5BGLE

Martin Bednář

I don’t expect I will ever try this, but it’s in my wishlist now.

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drank Balhyo Cha by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Gongfu!

Started the morning with a session of Balhyocha from Soocha in my little tea space – now with several new plant friends!! I’ve been on a really intense kick of Soo’s Yuzu Balhyocha ever since TO Tea Festival; it may actually be my favourite tea discovery of 2023. Well, so far at least! I almost brewed that tea up again today, but I opted for the straight Balhyocha instead since my stash of the Yuzu is getting light. I’m glad I did because the immediate notes of robust, thick, and full bodied chocolate and raw cacao with heavy roasted peanuts, charcoal, and just a hint of chestnut honey were a much needed reminder that so much of the magic of the Yuzu Balhyocha is, well, the Balhyocha itself! I knew that intellectually, but tasting it on its own was so visceral and intoxicatingly delicious. I definitely needed to experience it again isolated to reignite my appreciation on a more emotional level!!

Tea Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/Cq3YCsEOD25/

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oQrE0y6FPEM

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drank Balhyo Cha by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Sipping on some Balhyo Cha in this gorgeous teacup from *TeaWithJann and possibly the cutest ever macarons!! The tea is naturally sweet with flavours of caramel glazed roasted peanuts, cocoa, dark honey, and jammy red fruits which is the perfect darker sweetness to compliment and contrast these brighter macarons!

Photo: https://www.instagram.com/p/CWjWTk9r2vv/

Plus, can we talk about how stunning the cup is!? I was immediately attracted to the unique geometric shape of this teacup and the colourful Spring time flowers that look practically hand painted. Jann’s eye for vintage teaware is amazing, and it definitely makes me understand why she felt she needed to limit herself to one colour of teacup!

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtSyX7if2mw&ab_channel=ROMES

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drank Balhyo Cha by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Gongfu!

Mmmm…

This makes for a very cozy and warm tea session, and I’m actually still not over how delish the dry leaf aroma of this tea is; rich cocoa puffed wheat cake and peanuts!! The taste is equally yummy, but with some stewed red fruits notes mixed in with the cocoa, grains, and toasted nut flavours that make up the majority of the flavour! Puffed Wheat Cake is still a pretty good descriptor, but maybe if you crossed that will a really nice peanut brittle. Mouthfeel is creamy…

I’m definitely no Balhyocha expert, but I do think this is one of the best I’ve tried!

Photos: https://www.instagram.com/p/CIEYYhgAJ9O/

…I did not steep that much loose tea in the gaiwan, don’t worry!

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GbpgGZYQLww&ab_channel=TheBrummiesVEVO

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drank Sejak by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

S is for… Sejak!

This was my first tea of the day on Sunday, which was pretty outside of my norm. Outside of focusing on “S” teas, though, I just was genuinely craving green tea. The light toasted barley, nutty, and corn silk profile is hit the spot in a super satisfying way!

Photo: https://www.instagram.com/p/CODaLQBgmsf/

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRMOygwB8q8&ab_channel=HugoHamlet-Topic

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drank Sejak by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

I was asked a few days ago to share a photo of some green teaware by my tea friend Kate on instagram – sorry that it took a few days, but here’s a beautiful pink and pistachio teacup that I adore:

https://www.instagram.com/p/CA3e_pOgSlH/

This was also a great excuse to try this Korean green tea that she so kindly included as a gift with my last order!! As you can see, I drank it a bit more Grandpa Style in the cup this afternoon; I really enjoyed this one a lot! Way more than I expected to; actually – I’m not really a big green tea drinker. It was very fresh and sweet though, with lovely nutty chestnut notes! Thank you for the kind gift!

Song Pairing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmtF-UsQ6HM&list=LL1M1wDjmJD4SJr_CwzXAGuQ&index=21&t=0s

derk

Beautiful cup :) Where did you buy it?

Martin Bednář

It is indeed wonderful cuppa. And chesnut notes in green tea are quite nice.

Roswell Strange

@derk – It’s from Bitterleaf:)

ashmanra

Beautiful cup! I went “oooooooo” out loud! I love the flowers with it. Great photo!

Daylon R Thomas

Damn that’s pretty. The hyacinth, and everything in the background blends.

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drank Mistletoe by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

If you own mistletoe I feel like it’s virtually impossible to not want to steep it up during the holidays! This was such a lovely mug though. The flavour itself is a little hard to describe but it reminds me of baked pumpkin or butternut squash with just a bit of cinnamon and nutmeg. Naturally warming and cozy with a woody nuttiness to the undertone as well. Just a genuinely very lovely tisane!

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drank Mistletoe by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Geek Steep Holiday Episode – “Steep”

We’re taking a two week break from our usual episode format to enjoy the holidays and catch up on some of the fandoms we’ll be focusing on for the last part of our first season, but we didn’t want to not put out any episodes at all so instead we’re doing two “mini episodes” – one for Geek and one for Steep, each focusing on three signficiants fandoms or teas that we either discovered or rediscovered during 2020…

I wont spoil my three tea picks from this week – you’ll just have to listen to the episode!

This was the tea that I drank during recording though! It’s 100% not a coincidence that I chose to drink Mistletoe for the recording of one of our two holiday episodes – this is a delicious herbal tea that works year round but it felt especially lovely to be drinking it this time of year/in this context. It’s warm, nutty, sort of buttery and squash/pumpkin like, and a little bit spicy with cinnamon adjacent flavours. Such a delight!

This did not make it into my top three picks – but it is probably my favourite straight herbal tea from the year – probably more than the snow chrysanthemum that I do deeply fell in love with. Veryyyyy tough call on that one, though.

Our Website: https://www.geeksteep.com/
Our Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/geeksteep/

Listen to us on Buzzsprout:
https://www.buzzsprout.com/1286036/podcast/website

DB topic:
https://steepster.com/discuss/42133-geek-steep-a-new-tea-and-fandom-podcast

Dustin

I only recently heard you can use mistletoe in tea! I’m going to have to pick some and try next time I find it.

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drank Mistletoe by Soocha Tea
15942 tasting notes

Grandpa style!

Placed an impulse order with Soocha a few weeks ago, primarily for this Mistletoe, and it ended up being a whole weird and complicated ordeal…

Basically, they shipped out the package and then a few days later I got a Canada Post delivery notification, but no package. So, I waited a few days just in case and when the package still didn’t get delivered I contacted Soocha to see if they could open a claim to look into it. I know that Canada Post is INSANELY busy right now, and I’m definitely not concerned about delayed delivery times – but I was a bit more concerned about having potentially lost a $60 tea order because it was incorrectly delivered.

Soocha was great about it though – they filed a claim and, when it started looking like it was going to take a long time for CP to even begin looking into it, they decided to just ship out a replacement package. Eventually the replacement package showed up, and on the same day the original one also showed up – which they said to just keep though I’m going to pass it on to a different local tea friend – feels only right to share the generosity…

So after all that, I had to try the mistletoe right away!!

I’ll be honest, I didn’t take notes – but it was incredible and very unique/distinct. Going by my hazy memory I would say the flavour notes that immediately come to mind would be like brazil nuts, very lightly toasted pumpkin or butternut squash, sweet potato, and like a woody element!? Definitely very cozy and comforting, and a little sweet and a little more savory/umami.

Mistletoe gets one big HELL YEAH from me!

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