Leaf Type: Green
Where to Buy: Aiya
Kukicha literally means “stem tea” and is made from different varieties of tea stems. Aiya’s Kukicha is a blend of stems from Gyokuro and Sencha. Most of Kukicha available in the market is made by stems from 100% Sencha, however, Aiya’s Kukicha is adding more than 50% of Gyokuro stems for more natural sweetness and rich aroma.
I fell in love with this Kukicha Green Tea from Aiya as I was pouring the liquid into my teacup … the aroma brought to mind freshly steamed spinach. Perhaps I was just hungry, but something about that scent just made me smile (not to mention salivate!)
The flavor is not quite as vegetative as the fragrance suggests. But that doesn’t mean that I’m loving it any less … because I really am enjoying this cuppa. It has a sweet, nutty flavor that is comforting yet refreshing. The taste is also vegetative, and I’m finding the vegetal notes to be more savory than sweet … offering a pleasing contrast to the sweet notes from the nutty taste. As I sip this, I am reflecting over some other Kukicha experiences I’ve had, and I’m realizing that this is indeed a sweeter Kukicha than the others that I’ve tried.
The texture is light and smooth, although as I continue to sip, I notice more of a brothy texture develop as the tea washes over my palate. The texture develops on the tongue in a very enjoyable and satisfying way.
I enjoyed this hot, but I noticed it was equally as tasty as the tea cooled, making this a nice change-up from the typical iced tea choice. This Kukicha is one of the better ones I’ve tried – of course, that comes as no surprise to me, as Aiya always manages to deliver top notch Japanese teas!