8 JUNE 2017

Premium green tea from the heart of Kyoto

Based in the inner-city neighbourhood of Nijo, Ippodo has been specialising in fine tea since 1717. As a purveyor of Japanese green tea for the past three centuries, the family-owned company has become renowned for premium teas with consistently high quality, year after year. Building upon longstanding relationships and using traditional blending techniques, the company continues to pride itself on providing tea drinkers around the world with blends that showcase the authentic flavours and fragrances of Japanese green tea leaves.

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Originally founded as Omiya and specialising in Japanese tea and ceramics, Ippodo was bestowed its name by Prince Yamashina in 1846 and from that point forward focused on purveying high grade tea from Uji, the historic and now-renowned tea-growing region in the southern part of Kyoto prefecture. Ippodo now operates standalone shops in Kyoto, Tokyo and New York, from which it purveys a wide variety of tea ranging from the shade-cultivated matcha and gyokuro to the open-field cultivated sencha and bancha varieties (yanagi, hojicha and genmaicha).

Catering to regular tea drinkers, first-timers and seasoned aficionados alike, Ippodo has developed fine quality teas to suit a range of situations and styles, whether it be sencha prepared in the traditional way, sweetened matcha powder sticks, tetrahedral teabags for optimal brewing or small one-pot packages for tastings. Working in close cooperation with traditional artisans throughout Japan, the company has also developed original products including bamboo whisks, copper canisters, tea bowls and teapots, the latter of which are produced in some of the country’s renowned kiln towns.

The Japan Store introduces a selection of Ippodo’s teas that showcase the heritage, quality and distinctive characteristics of Japanese green tea.

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Matcha: Steeped in tradition; perfect with sweets

Often associated with the traditional tea ceremony, matcha is a finely-ground powder with rich flavour, vivid colour and a mellow, full-bodied sweetness. Derived from shade-cultivated gyokuro leaves that are steamed, dried and trimmed, Ippodo’s matcha is ground on an automated stone mill to achieve a superior consistency. Kimmo-no-mukashi is a popular choice for first-time matcha drinkers due to its authentic taste and affordable mid-level price. Flavoursome, creamy and with a hint of bitterness, it proves the perfect partner for traditional Japanese confectionery and sweet dairy products.
Tip: For the best results, sift 2 grams of powder into a tea bowl, add 60 ml of 80°C water and whisk vigorously until smooth.

Gyokuro: Full-bodied and rich in umami

Gyokuro has a full-bodied, umami-rich flavour that results from the tea being shade cultivated for approximately 20 days before being harvested. With a smooth, viscous texture and a mellow sweetness, Kanro Gyokuro – named after the Japanese word for sweet dewdrops – is a luxurious blend that is sure to satisfy even the most passionate green tea drinkers.
Tip: For the best results, brew 10 grams of tea in 80 ml of 60°C water for 1.5 minutes.

Sencha: Sharp, refreshing and fragrant

Cultivated entirely in open fields, sencha contains a harmonious blend of sweetness, bitterness, richness, astringency and fragrance. Rich in vitamin C, Hosen Sencha is a premium blend that is well suited to seasoned tea drinkers and newcomers alike, offering a subtle sweetness, elegant fragrance and fresh aftertaste.

Tip: For the best results, brew 10 grams of tea in 210 ml of 80°C water for 1 minute.

Hojicha: Low in caffeine; full of flavou

Hojicha is a roasted tea known for its dark amber colour, rich flavour and distinctively smoky aroma. The refreshing Gokujo Hojicha can be presented in a range of styles, whether it be served on its own, paired with sweets or accompanying a meal – morning, noon or night.
Tip: For the best results, brew 10 grams of tea in 240 ml of 100°C water for 30 seconds.

Genmaicha: Refreshing and perfectly balanced

Genmaicha is easy to prepare and combines the refreshing taste of green tea with the mild aroma of roasted rice. As a mixture of yanagi tea leaves and roasted genmai rice, Gokujo Genmaicha can be used in ochazuke (tea poured over rice and served with pickled vegetables) or paired with meals such as piping hot winter oden (hot pot).
Tip: For the best results, brew 10 grams of tea in 240 ml of 100°C water for 30 seconds.

Product lineup

- Matcha (thé vert en poudre) Kimmo-no-mukashi: €12.10
- Gyokuro (thé vert raffiné) Kanro: €69.00
- Sencha (thé vert) Hosen: €34.50
- Hojicha (thé vert torréfié) Gokujo Hojicha: €8.60
- Genmaicha (thé avec riz grillé) Gokujo Genmaicha: €8.60
- Assortiement de 3 types du thé en sachets: €11.20