Popular in Japan. Roasted Bancha or Kukicha tea, often used as an after-dinner tea.
82 °C (180 °F)
1 - 3 minutes
Number of infusions:
4 teaspoons per litre
Hōjicha (Houjicha)(ほうじ茶?) is a Japanese green tea that is distinguished from others because it is roasted in a porcelain pot over charcoal; most Japanese teas are usually steamed. The tea is fired at a high temperature, altering the leaf color tints from green to reddish-brown. The process was first performed in Kyoto, Japan in the 1920s and its popularity persists today.
Hōjicha is often made from bancha (番茶, "common tea"), tea from the last harvest of the season; however, other varieties of Hōjicha also exist, including a variety made from sencha, and Kukicha, tea made from the twigs of the tea plant rather than the leaves.
Hōjicha infusions have a light- to reddish-brown appearance and are less astringent due to losing catechins during the high-temperature roasting process. The roasted flavors are extracted and dominate this blend: the roasting replaces the vegetative tones of standard green tea with a toasty, slightly caramel-like flavor. The roasting process used to make Hōjicha also lowers the amount of caffeine in the tea. Because of its mildness, Hōjicha is a popular tea to serve during the evening meal or after, before going to sleep, and even preferred for children and the elderly.