Hojicha is the roasted Japanese green tea. Due to the roasting process, tea has a light brown infusions and the taste is smooth and not bitter or astringent. It has a comfortable toasty and caramel-like flavor. It is a popular tea to serve during meal or after meal.
I have always wanted to produce Hoji Cha that the quality is as outstanding as the high grade sencha. So far it was very hard to find the Hoji Cha that gives the deep after taste and very long lasting flavor. To achieve it, I emphasized the quality of raw material. I used Uji Sencha Jubuzan. This tea is produced using natural farming method. Thanks to the outstanding quality of the soil, the tea gives an unusual depth of aftertaste and smooth drinking feeling.
Tea grows very slow without fertilizer and accumulates a lot of polyphenols and minerals. As a result, it gives noticeably strong aftertaste and thick flavor. If I taste any leaf plucked directly from the tea tree, I can immediately tell its quality because the difference in quality is obvious enough. When I tasted the grown-up leaf of Jubuzan, I was very impressed. It is not the young leaf, yet tea gives a very sweet taste, no bitterness or dryness at all.
For baking this tea, we use sand-roast as it is the most traditional method and always brings out good flavor. Tea gives clear and golden liquor. Most of my customers who tried this tea commented that it doesn't taste like Hoji Cha, but taste like a high-grade oolong tea.
The leaf is glossy and amber brown color. From the aroma of dry leaf, you can feel its unusually deep flavor. When you touch, the tealeaf is very tender and elastic.
The quality tea alters the property of water. The higher the quality of the tea, the higher the iron content of the tea. The iron ion changes the strength of hydrogen bond of water and the water's property becomes very close to our body water.
In other word, quality tealeaf modifies the water and make it easier for our body to utilize. Uji Hojicha Jubuzan drastically changes the water property. As a result, we feel relaxed, feel happy and eventually we feel sleepy. This is called "tea drunk" effect.