Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Coffee & Tea Festival: Ito En & Tafu

Two major Japanese tea companies were represented at the 2008 NYC Coffee and Tea Festival: Ito En and Tafu.

Ito En was unveiling two new products, Mint Green in their Teas Tea line and Oi Ocha, which is the #1 selling RTD (Ready-to-Drink, a.k.a. "bottled" or "canned," depending on the packaging method) tea in Japan and was only available in specialty stores in the US until now. The Mint Green seems like a good tea for soothing the stomach or for a new tea drinker. The Oi Ocha is a robust tea, best-suited for more serious tea drinkers. It is double brewed for maximum catechins and a strong umami (astringent) taste.
Oishi! <--Japanese for "delicious."

Tafu was promoting their NYC tearoom, which serves a variety of teas and tea sweets. Their tea sweets are made by Kyotofu, which (of course) serves their tea and uses their tea to make delicious tea sweets (think white chocolate matcha cupcakes, black sesame sweet tofu with houjicha green tea sauce). They also flew in their 7th generation tea master, who spoke at several events and freshly roasted houjicha especially for the event. (I bought some. It's fantastic.)

Matcha cupcake with lecture notes and some sequins on one of my salwar kameez (tunic, pants, and scarf outfits) from India

Tafu's 7th generation tea master roasting houjicha

Tomorrow, I'll talk about some of the lectures at the Coffee and Tea Festival. Until then, drink up!


Steph said...

Very cool! I am on the lookout for good japanese tea sweets (like what would be served at a Japanese tea party). Do you have any good sources? stephw7@sbcglobal.net


VeeTea said...

Yes, I'll email you shortly!