Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Tea shop that I appreciate


Where do you usually get your tea?  I appreciate tea shops with some factors, such as knowledgeable staff, sample leaves and tasting.  There are not many shops that offer tasting.

I went to a local tea shop, Marumoto for the first time.  It is located in a traditional mall in my town.



I found another factor that I appreciate there.  Do you see many tea boxes on the shelves?  They sell tea by measure!  Usually, tea is pre-packed and you have to buy the same tea in certain amounts, something like 100 or 200g.  I want to try many different types of teas.  So, it will be very much appreciated if I can buy them in small amounts.  What the factors do you count on for your tea shop?


21 comments:

  1. I've started buying most of my tea online because all the tea shops here in Toronto are aimed at people who don't understand tea at all. I wish I could find a lovely tea shop like yours!

    Kate
    http://sagacitea.blogspot.com

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    1. I wonder what they are like; the tea shops for people who don’t know anything about tea at all. I assume they sell low quality or only a few kinds of tea. Or, the staff only knows a little about tea? Humm … I want to try these shops at least once ^^

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  2. I remember going to Japan (Mito mostly) in 1971, where you sat at a beautiful table made from a tree root and were served tea to sample before you bought. Always they measured, never was it in packages then. I love that old style of service that was in Japan back then. In Portland and Seattle, we have tea shops that will brew tea for you to sample, and measure out by the ounce for purchase. It is wonderful!!

    Jan E.

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    1. It’s great that you’ve visited Japan a long time ago. Back then, tea may be sold by measure at many shops. I have lived in Portland for a few years as a student, and I love the city. I didn’t like tea bags of green tea that I bought in a supermarket there. I wish I knew your wonderful tea shop. I would have been a resident of the shop, hahaha^^

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    2. Probably when you were a student, we didn't have these shops. I hated the Japanese teas from the supermarket as well, then. (even from the Japanese stores) and ordered all my sencha from my friends in Japan. But now we can get good teas (not the variety you get in Japan though), sencha, gyokuro and some hojicha's. I'm glad Portland (and Seattle) are becoming tea cities. My favorite teas are from Taiwan, I buy from Floating Leaves Tea in Seattle ( floatingleaves.com )
      Some Japanese teas are available in Portland at Jasmine Pearl (www.jasminepearl.com)
      So sorry you didn't get to participate in the tea contest, it is great that you are developing the ability to differentiate teas though!.
      Jan

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    3. You were lucky that you had friends who could send you sencha^^. Seattle style cafes got popular in Japan 10-15years ago. I’ve been having a stereotype that the Northwest area is the city of coffee. But, it seems old now and the area is becoming a tea city. How nice! I love both coffee and tea. Portland is a much more attractive than when I was there.

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  3. Beautiful shop interior.l order teas only via internet because l can get organic Japanese teas much cheaper than here in Slovenia and the range to choose from is much broader.Our first and still most prominent tea shop in our capitol offers teas by measure.l personally don't like to buy teas that way because the boxes are opened and closed a billion times and tea leafs get in contact with air constantly.l believe it affects the quality of leafs.The size of the boxes may matter because smaller boxes get empty more quickly and the flow of fresh leafs into a box is more frequent.But anyway,l'm still not too sure about this issue.What do you think about this,Kohei?

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    1. I’m of course aware about that point and I totally agree with you. Technically, pre-packed tea with nitrogen can keep a better quality tea compared with the one exposed to fresh air, a hundred times. If you want a better quality tea, packed tea will be better than tea sold by measure.

      However, the point is that, I want to try out many different teas, and want to purchase them in small amounts. At the moment, I find more value in experiencing different teas than the slight advantage in quality^^

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  4. I remember when this store, http://www.tealuxe.com/ was the first tea store to open in the Boston area in a long time. I still like to go there. They are small, but have a nice atmosphere. University students can study there. They don't allow you to sample the tea (unless you pay for a cup of tea), but they sell by measure, with the minimum being 10g. They don't have as many varieties as I can buy in Asia and/or online; one popular site based in the Boston area is http://www.uptontea.com/ But online I usually cannot buy small quantities.

    In Singapore I like to go to http://www.tea-chapter.com.sg/ They also do not have a very large selection, and they sell pre-packed tea, but I like to go there because the owners are very knowledgable. (The employees are not always so knowledgable, though!) They even offer a month-long class (for a fee) about Chinese tea that was very informative and intensive. They also have nice service if you stay there to drink. They put a water kettle and burner next to you so that you can have multiple steepings of your tea, and they will either prepare the tea for you or allow you to prepare for yourself. That is good both for people who do not know how long to steep their own tea, and for people who know how to prepare their own tea and just like to be at a teahouse for the atmosphere.

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    1. I watched the visual tour on Tealuxe’s website. I totally understand that you are saying they have a nice atmosphere. I want to take Japanese ancient tea masters to Tealuxe to show how nice tea shop that Boston has, hahaha^^

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  5. I buy only from the online shops from Japan.
    I've ordered from maybe 4 shops so far, and without any problem.
    In my town, there are the tea shops, but they buy in large amounts, so I don't feel like their teas are fresh. I've tried teas from local shop, buy they are not so good as those I order from Japan. And many times, they are overpriced...
    Kohei, do you consider to sell teas on your web page with utensils?

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    1. Do you have any online tea shop in Japan that you recommend?

      Well, I would really like to deal tea at my shop, but not in the immediate future. I think dealing tea is not easy. But, someday ヾ(@⌒ー⌒@)ノ

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    2. Hi,
      sorry for late reply, I was out of home.
      So I order from these sites so far:

      http://store.ryu-mei.com/
      They have also ebay store:
      http://stores.ebay.co.uk/Ryu-Mei-Organic-Green-Tea-Shop?_trksid=p4340.l2563

      http://greentea-japan.com/
      http://stores.ebay.com/Japanese-Green-Tea-Direct-From-Farm

      I'll try some suggested in comments for this article.

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    3. Hi, Thanks for the links!!

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  6. I recommend this site : http://www.thes-du-japon.com/

    Tea selection is really great, and you know exactly what you buy : origin, cultivar , producer etc...

    Great place in my opinion :)

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    1. Thanks for the link! They have many kinds and their tea look nice^^ They must taste good.

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  7. I do almost all of my tea shopping online, mostly because of my job and also because the variety and quality available from shops based abroad is vastly better than what I can get here in Stockholm. We do have one great shop that sells teas by weight, primarily Chinese tea but I rarely have the time or energy to go there. Also one Chinese-style tea house whose oolongs are decent, and a couple more shops whose teas are OK. Apart from that the majority of tea shops, although they sell their teas by weight, cater to people who don't have any real knowledge about tea(I'm not saying I'm an expert either.... ;) ) and so are full of cheap, flavored teas of rather low quality. And it's black tea for the most part. If you visit any supermarket here their tea is 90% bagged stuff, lots of fruit-flavored Lipton >_< I think Swedes drink the most flavored teas out of any nationality and have only just in the last decade or so discovered green teas, I guess most people drink it for the health benefits though.
    Then there's Ono Yuko who is some sort of tea ambassador and quite visible in the press and at fairs and such, I think she gets her teas from her family's farm. Also a small design shop-Kiki, run by a Japanese couple who came here to learn about Sweden as they were thinking of opening a shop selling Swedish design stuff in Tokyo, but ended up doing the opposite, opening their shop here to sell Japanese design. They made gyokuro for me on my first visit, very nice people =)

    Wow, long answer... :D

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    1. I hope that there will be many tea shops dealing good Japanese tea in Stockholm in the future^^ I have never been to any Europe counties but I would like to visit there someday!

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  8. What a great resource! Thanks and more power to you.

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  9. This is an intresting blog that you have posted, you shares a lot of things about
    online coffee store

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