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Imperial Green - Roasted
Roasted Green Tea


Zehijiang, China is an eastern coastal province with a humid, subtropical climate. One of the most famous tea producing regions in China, records of tea production date back as early as the Wei and Jin Dynasties, 1500 years ago.

Imperial Green - Roasted:

Brewing Suggestions
As a young tea merchant preparing to open the original Imperial Tea Court in San Francisco, my first order of business was to select our beginning inventory. The most important piece of that puzzle at the time was the Monkey Picked Tie Guan Yin. This is the tea that changed my life when I walked into a Hong Kong tea shop while they were firing their own Tie Guan Yin Tea. (Complete story in my book, The Great Teas of China.)

I ordered this tea from a very reputable company who does their own firing prior to sale. I remember standing by the old tea firing master, trying to suggest my input on how my tea should be fired. He glared at me and said, "No one does it that way!" I had to go to his boss and ask him to intervene to have my teas fired the way I wanted. This one event led to the decision to fire of all our Oolong teas in our warehouse in America.

During my visit to our Jasmine Tea factory this summer, I asked my factory manager to do an additional scenting on a lower grade Jasmine Tea and he looked at me with that funny, surprised what-the-hell-are-you-doing look and said, "but no one does it that way!" I pushed them into scenting it the way I wanted and was able to land a 7000 lb. order from my customer.

This brings me to today's subject, the firing of a great green tea.

I have always thought that the Japanese Hojicha is an interesting idea; turning the tea into a different product simply by firing a Sencha into a darker Hojicha. However, I always felt that this firing method masked the interesting notes of the original tea. And, therefore, this kind of tea is not considered to be the highest quality. Since I am now old enough to do what I want and no one in my company is going to look at my strangely (at least I hope), I decided to take one of our greatest green teas and fire it.

This is a decision that may take many by surprise. The green tea is our Imperial Green, which we sell out every year and - yes - my wife almost stopped speaking to me for a couple of days. But once she tasted my work, she had to smile and give me the OK sign.

The fired Imperial Green is incredibly smooth and rich in flavor but retaining that trademark, non-aggressive nature. The aftertaste is long lastingly sweet and cleansing. And there's the unexplainable combination of the mild green tea flavor coupled with the concentrated toasty nuttiness that is present all the way through. This is one of the occasions that confirm how important traditions are but one should not always follow blindly.

We are very pleased to be able to share this wonderful tea with you and I look forward to hearing from you.



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