Long enjoyed in Japan as a tea to drink with family and friends, this tea connotes a sense of comfort and well-being. Roasted rice is the source of its distinctive yet entirely appealing toasty flavor. Matcha, the premiun Japanese green tea ground to a fine powder and used in the tea ceremony, is also blended with this tea. Genmai-cha brews to a beautiful jade green color in the cup.
Around 1738, Kahei Yamamoto IV wanted to make green tea accessible to not only wealthy people but to everyone. He learned that steaming tea leaves resulted in a delicious tea with a fresh yellow-green color, balanced sweetness, mild astringency and retained nutrients. This tea, called sencha, became a sensation, and Yamamotoyama became a household name.
Yamamotoyama's culture of innovation continued with Kahei Yamamoto VI and the invention of Gyokuro tea in 1835. Gyokuro is known as the highest quality tea with a dense, rich sweetness and astringency. Some who have tried it describe it as the espresso of green teas.
Kahei Yamamoto VIII began manufacturing and selling seaweed as a holiday gift in 1947, which became immensely popular in Japan's gift-giving culture.
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