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How to brew Japanese green tea

how to brew Japanese green tea

How to brew loose-leaf Japanese green tea

Preparing the Japanese tea tools

Does brewing green tea seem challenging? Don't worry! Once you understand the basics of brewing tea, including using the right amount of tea leaves, the right kind and temperature of water, you too can brew the perfect cup of tea!
The Kyusu Japanese tea pot with a mesh strainer is the ideal gadget for brewing successful Japanese tea. However, if it is not available, use a strainer to remove the leaves when you serve it into a tea cup. We do not suggest the use of a tea strainer spoon, like one would use with black tea. This is because Japanese tea has more of a slim needle-like shape, and which expands during brewing.

  Japanese green tea brewing instruction 1
Japanese green tea brewing instruction 2

Water for Japanese tea brewing

Water temperature is a very important component of brewing tea, as the hotter the water is the stronger the tea will be. It is important to note, however, that an overly hot cup of water might leave you with burnt leaves and a bitter taste.

The standard temperature for Japanese tea is 80 ºC (176 ºF). Most teas use this temperature, except for Hojicha, a roasted tea, where you can use boiling water to bring out its best flavor. This standard temperature is dependent not only on the type of tea, but also on the grade of tea. The higher grade teas should be brewed with a temperature of 70 ºC (158 ºF) or lower, as this allows the sweetness from the L-Theanine to remain in the brew without the associated astringency of tannin and bitterness of caffeine.
If you find that your tea tastes bitter, lower the temperature of the water and reduce the amount of tea leaves that you use.

Pro tip! After you boil the water, pour it into teacups, and let it sit until the water has dropped to its ideal temperature, then pour your water into the teapot. This lowers the amount of time it takes to cool down the water, as just from pouring it in the cups it loses 5-10ºC in temperature.

  • We recommend using soft water. Water hardness makes different taste of tea.
  • If you use tap water, boil the water for a few minutes to remove the smell of chlorine.
  • As we mentioned above, though, make sure that you use lower temperatures for higher grade tea leaves. This ensures the best tasting tea possible.


Japanese tea temperature

  • Hojicha roasted tea: 95 ºC (203 ºF)

  • Kukicha (stem) tea: 85 ºC (185 ºF)

  • Genmaicha tea: 85 ºC (185 ºF)

  • Guricha - standard: 80 ºC (176 ºF)
  • Guricha - premium: 70 ºC (158 ºF)

  • Sencha - standard: 80 ºC (176 ºF)
  • Sencha - premium: 70 ºC (158 ºF)

  • Gyokuro: 40-60 ºC (104-140 ºF) or lower
how to brew Japanese tea

How much tea should I use in a pot?

As a basic fact, the more dried tea that you use, the stronger your cup of tea will be. As a general rule, you will be using 5 grams (0.18oz) of tea, about 2 heaping teaspoons, per 220 ml., which is about a cup.
This being a general rule, it is changed depending on the type of tea you use. As well, note that we use only the high quality tea leaves, which allows you multiple brewings, where you generally use hotter water after the first brew.

How long should I brew the tea for?

Well, it depends on what you want your final brew to taste like. One will find that the longer you brew your tea leaves for, the stronger, and more bitter, the cup will be as the time allows more tannins and caffeine to escape into the water, which are both responsible for astringency and bitterness.

Brewing time is also determined by the type of tea that you use. For example, Fukamushi tea is brewed for a shorter time than Asamushi tea. Because Fukamushi is steamed longer than Asamushi, the tea is more powdery, and therefore also quicker to brew.

Gyokuro tea, as another example, is brewed for a longer time with cooler water, which allows one to fully appreciate the flavor and characteristic sweetness of L-Theanine.


Japanese tea brewing guide

  • : 7g* / 230ml (1 cup) / 30 sec

  • Kukicha : 7g* / 230ml (1 cup) / 30 sec

  • Guricha 5g* / 230ml (1 cup) / 30 sec

  • Gyokuro : 8g* / 125ml (1/2 cup) / 2 -3 min
how to brew Japanese tea

Serving Japanese Green tea

After steeping your tea, the leaves should be fully opened and infused perfectly. Don’t shake hard instead, slowly round your teapot and, pour the tea slowly little by little into each of your teacups to make it even.

Make sure that you remove all of the liquid from your teapot so that you can prepare your tea for its second infusion. (slightly lift the teapot’s lid for a short time, releasing steam and heat)

To enjoy good second infusion, use slightly higher temperature water and steep short time as tea leaves are already opened so no need to wait.
Our Classic grade tea are good for up to second infusion and premium grade tea are good through its third even fourth infusion.

Pro tip! 5g means aprx. 2 to 3 tsp
It depends on leaf size and shape. Powdery formed, Fukamushi tea leaf uses less tsp and larger, bulky tea leaves such as stem or Asamushi tea leaf use more tsp.

Storing Japanese Green Tea

to keep Japanese tea fresh

The ideal location for storing Japanese tea is a cool, dry and dark place, this is because deterioration occurs when the teas leaves absorb moisture, or are placed in a hot environment or encounter the sun’s rays.

One can definitely store the tea in a refrigerator or freezer to maintain freshness, however there are a few things to be aware of when you do this.
First, tea leaves absorb other flavors very easily, so it is important that you tightly seal the leaves in a plastic bag.

Second, when you remove the tea from the fridge, it is important to wait until the tea has returned to room temperature before you open the bag.

This is important because any sudden change in temperature can cause condensation in the bag, potentially degrading the tea through moisture. So, we recommend that you store your unopened tea package in the fridge or freezer, but, once opened, we recommend that it is stored in a cool, dry and dark location, away from smells, heat, light and humidity.

Store your tea in a cool, dry, dark place. Be aware of condensation, and never open the bag until the tea is at the same temperature as where you’re opening it. Make sure that you pack your tea air-tight, as tea easily absorbs other flavors and smells.

Ship by USPS or Canada Post.