Who can resist the idea of Popcorn Tea, especially when the label has little film reels on it for your next movie showing? Teapigs isn’t the first tea company to package genmaicha under the pretense of popcorn, but they have some of the cutest packaging.
Genmaicha is a type of green tea blended with puffed rice. This makes it so that the dry leaf and the brewed tea has a distinct toasty popcorn smell. It is a unique tea, sometimes slightly savory, but always supremely cozy. I highly recommend trying green tea with puffed rice at least once and see how it goes. Teapigs Popcorn Tea is a great place to start.
The overtones of the tea are warm bready notes, the roasted grain flavors of the puffed rice leading the way in scent in taste. Beneath that first burst of popcorn, the green tea comes through with slightly more vegetal notes like gentle celery or bok choy. Alongside the puffed rice, the tea pleasantly reminds me of sauteeing green vegetables in sesame oil.
I love drinking this tea in the late afternoon (or maybe even before a movie in the evening!). With lower caffeine than black tea, Popcorn Tea makes for a warming and soothing pick-me-up on a busy day. Even if you can’t snuggle in under a quilt with a bowl of popcorn, this tea can help you imagine you’re there.
Here’s the scoop!
Leaf Type: Genmaicha
Where to Buy: Teapigs
This tea has flourished from humble beginnings – Japanese peasants used to mix green tea with toasted rice to make it go further. It is now celebrated in its own right as Genmaicha tea, or Popcorn tea. “Sugar Puffs in a cup” – a truly unique blend with an almost nutty undertone.
Learn even more about this tea and tea company here!
Leaf Type: Pu’Erh
Where to Buy: Camellia Sinensis
This amalgamation of tea and chocolate harmonizes beautifully the woody and earthy aromas of aged tea. Its rich nuances of cocoa butter and vanilla are a dessert in itself, perfect after a meal or the comfort of a sweet treat. Ingredients: Pu’er tea, chocolate, vanilla flavor.
Learn more about this tea here.
Camellia Sinensis happens to be one of my favourite online vendors, and I’ve already made several orders with them already this year – for tea and teaware, and I fully expect that I’ll be placing more before the year is over so I definitely have some higher expectations for this tea despite doing my best to be as open minded as possible.
Starting with the dry leaf, it definitely smells good – a little earthy with a coco puffs cereal sort of thing going on. To me, that sort of breaks down to a milky chocolate, some vanilla, and a touch of malt.
The smell is awesome after it has steeped too; very sweet and robust with chocolate, vanilla and earth notes. It’s making my mouth water just a little bit. However, it’s not translating into a rich, full taste like the smell would have you believe so immediately I’m a little bit disappointed – though the taste certainly isn’t bad either. I definitely get a rather muddy, thick Pu’Erh flavour and mouthfeel with some natural sweetness and a little malt perhaps? It feels a bit raw and unrefined. The chocolate comes off a little bit powdery the way some French teas do to me; it’s not necessarily a bad thing but it’s not for everyone – and the way the malt and vanilla play with this it definitely makes the Coco Puff cereal comparison seem accurate.
It tasted better as it cooled down; the chocolate and vanilla flavours appeared to get stronger. Because of the way I’m picturing this as cereal, and with the cooled down temperature I can definitely see it working as either a hot or iced latte – if I had more, I’d try it that way for sure. As is, I enjoyed this one even if it wasn’t what I was expecting at all. There were some disappointing things, but some really good things as well. I don’t think I’d purchase it especially when other companies offer similar teas – but I’m happy I sated my curiosity.