All tagged tea blog post

My tasting notes: 2018 Wild Raw Puerh

I won this cake a while ago at a giveaway on Instagram and it had been sitting - untouched - in my tea cabinet for a while. Puerh is meant for aging, so I was not overly concerned and I was waiting to be in the mood for it. Let me tell you, I’m rarely in the mood for puerh. I can hear all the pu-heads gasping in horror. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy it a lot, but not for solo tea sessions. Strange, isn’t it? Anyways, I somehow associate young (or relatively young) raw puerh with grape skin notes, but I could not detect those here and I did not miss them because there was plenty of other intriguing notes going on.

The only matcha pancakes recipe you will ever need

These pancakes are shockingly easy to make and they pack a ton of matcha flavor. Gone are the days of tasteless matcha-flavored stuff! Did I mention they are dairy-free and low in sugar? I don’t like my pancake batter too sweet because you’re going to drizzle maple syrup on top anyway, right? The secret to fluffy pancakes every time is not a secret at all, my dear matcha loving friends! Whip egg whites to stiff peaks and fold gently into the batter and voila! Enjoy! Recipe right this way.

My favorite tea recipes for fall

Happy first day of fall, tea lovers! How are you celebrating this wonderful season? I can’t say it looks or feels like fall here in LA (yet?), but I can celebrate nonetheless, right? Luckily, I have some tea-infused recipes up my sleeve. Right this way for some cozy tea goodness.

My tasting notes: Machiko VS Fukumidori

Machiko is known to have the distinctive aroma of sakura, cherry blossoms, and fukumidori was described to me as bitter but in a good way, which is not a priority for me when choosing green tea from Japan (umami is at the top of the list usually). Apparently, Japanese tea drinkers seem to enjoy bitterness in their green tea and I was curious to see what that was like. Read on to discover my tasting notes and thoughts.

Tea service in restaurants is appalling and it keeps me up at night

It was a damp, chilly, foggy summer night in San Francisco and I was having dinner with my husband at a fine dining restaurant, a newly opened neighborhood gem. Things were going pretty well, beautiful space, amazing food, thoughtful and friendly service. It couldn’t have been any more perfect until the dessert menu arrived. On a whim, I decided to order tea with my dessert, because the selection seemed promising. Big, big mistake, Anna, big mistake, sweetheart.

Japan. Tea in Kyoto

Kyoto is one of those places where I get what I can only describe as a fizzy feeling of excitement, sheer happiness bubbling up for no apparent reason. It’s the texture of the linen door curtains I gently move to the side with my hand, the brightest pop of yellow of the beautifully fan-shaped gingko leaves, all the shades of fire coloring the Japanese maples, the sound of water trickling into a stone basin, the soft rustling of a paper-paneled sliding door, the perfume-y smell of the cedar wood soaking tub, tatami mats under my feet. Four years had gone by since last time. This time, tea was at the top of my list. Here’s what happened.

Ochazuke: a delicious Japanese tea soup

You can’t see me but I’m doing a little happy dance over here, because my trip to Japan is fast approaching!! I’ve never been to Japan in the wintertime and I’m super excited to visit again one of my favorite countries in the world. Cold weather means hot tea and comforting dishes and I will definitely be on the lookout for the best ochazuke, a Japanese tea and rice soup, basically the epitome of comfort food (but healthy). Usually, genmaicha and hojicha are the teas of choice but sencha and matcha can also be used. Today I’m testing out a recipe from Bon Appetit magazine.

Tea in San Francisco - by neighborhood. Hayes Valley

Hayes Valley is one of the most charming neighborhoods in San Francisco and a fine dining destination, full of independently owned shops and boutiques. I decided to explore it by taking a look at the tea it has to offer. Despite not having many tea houses or tea shops, there’s plenty of high quality, loose leaf tea in Hayes Valley! I have a few gems in store for you, are you excited?

Comparing 2 single-cultivar matcha

Why do we love matcha so much? Personally, I love its color, sweetness, cocoa butter notes, hints of freshly cut grass (even better if there’s some umami taste), rich persistent foam and creamy mouthfeel. Honestly, I’ve been wanting to take it to the next level of tea geekness for a while. Unexpectedly, I found an intriguing method for matcha evaluation on the Kettl Tea blog (*). When I managed to find and get my hands on 2 single-cultivar matcha, the stars aligned. I had to compare them in a systematic way. The idea of “decoding” matcha is pretty exciting and I ended up learning more than I had ever expected to.