A US-based company, Arteao is focused on wellbeing and quality ingredients to put into your body. As part of the 1% for the Planet, they are also an environmentally conscious brand and are trying to help the planet through their shop. They specialize in different kinds of powders from ceremonial matcha and Japanese Green Teas to powders like dragonfruit, maqui berry, and butterfly pea flower. They reached out to have me try their new Japanese Green Tea blends: Genmaicha, Hojicha, Matcha Genmaicha, and Fukamushi Sencha. Here are my thoughts:
Organic Genmaicha: I love genmaicha, it is one of my favorite green tea variations (along with hojicha). The look of this tea had some beautifully roasted rice although I mentioned in my tasting notes that none seemed to be popped. The long green tea leaves were a combination of light and darker greens and pressed flat. The color of the brewed tea was a lovely light green, bordering on yellow (I could not tell if it was my choice of teaware), and extremely clear. After brewing, I noted that the aroma was quite nutty and had a few roasted notes. But it also filled my nose with buttery and creamy notes/feelings. It really warmed my nostrils (which is a weird sentence to write). I first brewed this tea at 175 degrees Fahrenheit for two minutes, and then a second time around 200 degrees Fahrenheit for a minute and a half. The first steeping was very light, sweet, and nutty with little toasted rice notes the whole way. The tea was extremely smooth and did not have any astringency/bitterness, even on the higher temperature brew. There was such a lingering warm taste and feeling, extremely mild and savory. I have gotten really into rice cakes recently, so this was absolutely treasured. It has been a while since I have had genmaicha, so I really enjoyed drinking this tea.
Ingredients: Organic Green Tea, Organic Roasted Brown Rice
Sourcing: Uji, Kyoto Japan
Organic Fukamushi Sencha: It has been a long time since I have had sencha by itself, which is very odd now that I think about it more. But even so, I took this time to really evaluate this tea. The aroma of the tea had a distinct vegetal note, reminding me a bit of sweet seaweed and even a little asparagus. I noticed that after the tea had brewed, the color of it was lime green and had a bit of cloudiness to it. From the picture, you can actually see the slight difference between the cloudiness and the smaller green tea cloud. As I sipped on it, I noticed that the tea had fairly light and sweet vegetal notes with a very subtle astringency. As I continued to drink, I noticed an after feeling of something similar to minerals. But it was very brief and did not last super long. I did a short steep for the second one, which is a tactic I learned in a Japanese green tea workshop. The second steep was super lovely. Honestly, I enjoyed it much more than the first. It was subtle reminding me of fresh-cut grass and summer days. The tea brought me into the summer, sitting on the back porch after my family cut the grass or doing a picnic in a grassy field. Sometimes I just feel a bit healthier when drinking straight green tea. My normal feeling of stomach heaviness goes away a bit, and I just feel slightly more energetic.
Sourcing: Uji, Kyoto Japan
Organic Hojicha: Hojicha is another tea that I find so heart-warming, so I was beyond excited to try this tea as well. I first brewed this tea at 175⁰F but I noticed that the brew was too light. I was a bit confused, but after seeing the instructions, I realized that they advised 212⁰F temperature water. So, I retried multiple times. The aroma of the tea was nutty and roasted, just as I expected and hoped. It just brought a smile to my face. The color of the tea was golden and clear, getting slightly darker with additional steeps. The taste was quite light and nutty, nothing too intense at first. By doing the 30 second infusion, the taste was super light roasted and almost had a nutty creaminess. I enjoyed drinking it with its lighter taste, as it did not overwhelm my senses. I ended up brewing the tea a bit longer (another 30 seconds) to try and pull out some more of those stronger roasted notes. It had a really smooth and even taste, with a lingering earthy like taste in my mouth. It was very relaxing to drink, like a hug of sorts. There is almost an additional mouthfeel of like iron. This sounds…odd…and it is not a bad thing. But being one who has well water and is knowledgeable about the taste of iron in water, (my water goes through reverse osmosis so no worries there) it has that initial taste the first couple seconds of the sip. Almost slightly mineral like, which really intrigued me.
Ingredients: Sourcing: Uji, Kyoto Japan
Organic Matcha Genmaicha: Genmaicha in general brings me such peace, serenity, and warmth. While the matcha brings me alertness. I love the combination because it jointly brings me warmth and alertness. It just is on another level and holds a special place in my heart since I tried Matcha Genmaicha before “regular” genmaicha. as I poured the water, the smell of roasted rice filled my room. It was extremely strong and lovely. The smell alone made my mouth water being so rice-y & sweet. I was so surprised by how potent the aroma was. The color of the brewed drink was slightly cloudy from the matcha and rice but had a lovely lime green color. The taste was very strong on the matcha end after brewing for 2 minutes. After a bit of investigating into the blend, I noticed how balanced the overall taste was. The rice component is quite strong and is evenly matched with the vegetal kick of the matcha that comes together so nicely. The matcha does settle a bit and make stronger little kicks in the midst of drinking. I think these two elements are a complete juxtaposition of flavors and intent, but they work so well.
Ingredients: Organic Green Tea, Organic Roasted Brown Rice, Matcha
Sourcing: Uji, Kyoto Japan
Price: Each of these teas are priced differently. The Organic Genmaicha is priced at $16.50 for 50 grams and $39 for 250 grams. The Organic Fukamuchi Sencha is priced at $19.95 for 50 grams and $69 for 250 grams. The Organic Hojicha is priced at $12.95 for 30 grams and $20.40 for 100 grams. And finally, the Organic Matcha Genmaicha is priced at $17.50 for 50 grams and $50 for 250 grams.
Packaging: The packaging for these teas are quite simple and effective. I did not notice any additional lingering scents coming from the top of the tea pouches, and the zipper close was very strong as well.
Sourcing: All of the above teas are sourced from Uji, Kyoto Japan.
What are your favorite Japanese Green Teas? Let me know in the comments below if you have a favorite and how often you consume it! Happy Brewing!