Day 6: Genmaicha

Hello readers!

If we’re going to keep up with each day’s post, we have to improvise. Today’s post comes from two separate locations: our downtown apartment and CHEO. Stacey and I take a break from our work to put on our kettles, pour our teas, and chat about the flavours over google hang outs. Hey, whatever works, amirite?

Tea: Genmaicha

Genmaicha from DAVIDsTEA

Description: Watch Out, It’s Addictive

Some people call Genmaicha popcorn tea because it contains whole roasted grains of brown rice, some of which have popped. Others call it the Rice Krispie of green teas. Either way, genmaicha was originally drunk by poor Japanese who used the rice as a filler because they couldn’t afford enough tea leaves. It soon became all the rage. Today, everyone is addicted to its sweet, toasted rice flavour. (MK Kosher)

Ingredients: Japanese-style green tea, roasted rice.

Tea Instructions: 1 tsp, 74°C, 2-3 min

Brooke: Stacey, are you ready??
Stacey: Hey, just waiting for my water to cool off.
Brooke: I think there’s a piece of popcorn in mine… Does rice pop like corn?
Stacey: How long was I supposed to infuse this for? I haven’t set a timer…
Brooke: 2-3 minutes, very short time.
Stacey: Aw crap.

Brooke: Mmmm… I like it. I think I like it better than the other green we had last year- it’s a bit heavier. Ooh this could be an every day tea. Mmm!
Stacey: Mine’s too hot still. Nooo, I hope I didn’t screw this up. I want an everyday tea!!

Brooke: You know, I think this green tea would make Nourish Tea proud, even though there’s rice in it.
Stacey: Yeah, based on the ingredients–only two! that’s got to be a record for Davids tea.
Brooke: No stevia or artificial flavouring, yay!
Stacey: I like it! Perfect mid-afternoon pick me up. Doesn’t make me crave sushi immediately after sipping it.
Brooke: That’s right! The other one just had us thinking about maki rolls but this has me working harder to study endocrinology!
Stacey: This tea is nice- I just want to sit back and relax with it.
Brooke: Mhmm but it’s motivating me, too. A little sip and right back to learning about pituitary adenylate cyclase-activating polypeptide!

Tea vibes:

Stacey:  This a nice woody and earthy tea that is pure and exactly what I wanted. It will put that spring in your step without the gimmick. If you’re a fan of green teas, you’ve got to give this one a try. 4/5

Brooke: I’d say this tea is really nice and mellow. The rice gives it a fullness that otherwise would be missing from a totally ‘pure’ green, so it fills you up nicely. Great tea to keep you going and to give you reason to believe in yourself (what?). 4/5

There we are, and look! Already a quarter done our 24 Days of Tea! Are you impressed? I know we are. Now get back to work!

Until next tea,

Brooke and Stacey

Stay alert! Stay safe.


Japanese Sencha

Hello friends!

So usually when Brooke and I review teas, we do so in the warmth of our cozy apartment. Especially with -39C weather. Today… we made an exception. We ventured out on a freezing cold day in Ottawa to drink and review our tea elsewhere. Why? As soon as we smelled our Organic Japanese Sencha steeping, we could only think one thing. SUSHI.


Tea: Organic Japanese Sencha

DAVIDsTEA Description: Light and Brisk

Japanese monks were writing about tea in the 9th century, but the world had to wait until 1740 for Sencha, when a tea merchant named Nagatani perfected a new process of steaming, rolling and heat-drying green tea. The result? An emerald-green tea that’s refreshing, smooth and high in antioxidants. No wonder it’s Japan’s most popular drink.

Ingredients: Fine organic steamed Japanese green tea from Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan.

To get started we put 2 tsp of tea into a tea pot and let our leaves steep in 74°C for 3 minutes. With one whiff, our stomachs were in the mood for a full on sushi lunch, so we poured our tea into travel thermoses and were off!

Stacey: Want to have a quick sip before we head out?
Brooke: Yeah, let’s do it!


Stacey: Oh yes, definitely a sushi green tea.
Brooke: Sushi!!!

On our way to our favourite sushi joint, Sushi Zone in the Byward market, Brooke dropped her thermos (of course). Luckily she had a Contigo thermos from Costco and not a drop of tea was spilled. (Shout out to Brooke’s Mom for that wonderful buy!)

Our walk to the market was not a long one but we were very  happy to be sheltered from the elements after being exposed to wickedly cold wind. Once we began to thaw, we took our order and we were ready for an all-Japanese experience.

Adorable Woman Behind the Counter: Would you like a drink with that?
Brooke: Oh no, thank you. We’ve got that covered.

*omnomnom* …*sip*

Brooke: Mmm, this tea has a bit a more flavour than the tea you would typically get at a sushi place. I think they steep their tea for less time, so it’s usually a bit more watered down. With ours you can really taste the  difference in the sencha preparation.
Stacey: Yeah, I wish we had it in little cups like sushi places though, it would complete the experience.
Brooke: It’s a great strong flavour, perfect with our salmon and tuna rolls. Wow. Best tea review ever. I wish every tea made us have the urge to go eat out!
Stacey: The question is, would we be drink this without sushi?
Brooke: …I would. Totally. A small amount, though. Not a whole cup.
Stacey: I think it would depend on the day for me. I wouldn’t take it to work but I would enjoy this at home.
*pause to eat more sushi*
Stacey: This is way too big; I mean, how do they expect you to put ALL that in your mouth? Really?!
Brooke: LOL…. Hey, you know, it’s been 40 minutes since we steeped the teas and the flavour is still just as strong. I say we try putting our brews in a thermos for the next teas that we review. Spencer, an avid reader of ours, suggested we try this to maintain the flavour and temperature of the tea. After this experience, it seems like it does wonders for both!

Brooke went on to say how happy she was that we were out eating sushi together and she was grinning from ear to ear. While I was also pretty happy, I was less…uh…expressive with my emotions.

Stacey: Brooke, I don’t know how you do it, being so animated when you’re happy. I would get so exhausted.
Brooke: Well Stacey, I say if you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands!

Tea Vibes:

Brooke: Great green tea. It’s got a wonderful aroma that fits perfectly with you. I’d love to have some of this in our cupboard as long as we’re not constantly rushing out to get sushi. Bam. Also, shout out to Contigo thermoses, you kept my tea hot and safe when battling Ottawa weather. Win! 9/10

Stacey: I have to agree with Brooke on this one, this was one tasty green tea. It was the perfect match for sushi but don’t worry if you find yourself without this tasty dish; this tea stands on its own. Its toasty flavour will have you feeling good and ready to conquer the day (even if involves cold Ottawa weather). I would be interested in having more of this tea more often. 9/10

Mmm, looks like Brooke and I are back on track. Tune in next time, when we hopefully review another tea that prompts us to dine out. Yum! Yum!

Until next tea,
Stacey and Brooke

I’m turning Japanese, I think I’m turning Japanese…I really think so!