I can taste all four seasons in a cup of hojicha.
Personally, a glass of cold-brew hojicha beats decades-old southern iced tea recipe, and this newfound tea became my daily thirst-quencher throughout the hot summer days in the south. One drop of lemon? A dollop of honey? Maybe, maybe not. It's still very refreshing and sweet on its own.
Once the leaves start to fall from the trees and the whole land is heading into deep autumn, and sun-burnt leaves are piling up on the street, I'm nostalgic for the smell of burning leaves. I scoop tea into a mug and steep it. The time passes slowly. The color of autumn bleeds into my mug. I sip it, and I reflect.
Some say hojicha is soothing and others say it's comforting. But I say it's cozy. As I slowly drink one sip at a time, I feel a warm blanket enveloping me on a cold winter morning. Just one cup of hot tea is like a hundred comforting words.
After cold and bitter days are gone, we feel happier as the sun lengthens the days. Like Mimi said in La Boheme, "No one feels lonely in spring." A mouthful of acacia flower in my hojicha tells me Spring has come.
- A review from a friend
Warm-brew hojicha is a very good communal tea that you can share during afternoon tea time or around a dinner table. We found that using a french press is especially convenient for this specific serving. You just need to be mindful of the temperature of the water you use, because hojicha is still a green tea. You can brew 2-3 times with one batch of tea.
Hojicha is also one of the best teas for cold brewing. In general, because cold water doesn't steep out tannin from the tea the way hot water does, cold-brew tea is less astringent and less caffeinated. So, you will taste the sweeter part of tea. In Japan, people even use ice (Kouridashi-style brewing) because the colder the water, the longer the leaves spend in the water and the more concentrated flavor becomes.