Chai to Stay Dry! So this was a chai that had me very curious, so I had to include it on my last Tea Chai Te order. I told my best friend about it, as he is a huge houjicha fan, and he even decided to order some to try as well! He sampled his before I got to mine and said it was very good, so on this drizzly evening, I figured it was time to finally give it a try!

This is a houjicha blended with chai spices and dusted in matcha powder (the chai spices aren’t specified on the website, so I’ve done my best to identify what I could from my infuser after the matcha powder was washed away, but I may have missed some, either from my ignorance or not having all the ingredients in that particular serving).

This is definitely a unique chai! The houjicha base is a deep, woody, roasted flavor, but the matcha powder adds a grassiness that normally isn’t present in that sort of tea. The initial taste of spices I pick out are anise and licorice; it isn’t a strong, biting, sticky sweetness, but it adds enough sweetness that the matcha feels naturally sweet rather than having its typical vegetal bitterness. Toward the end of the sip, as the sweet licorice and matcha flavors fade, the robustness of the hojicha fills out and a burst of strong ginger and cardamom linger on the tongue, leaving behind just a slight bit of heat.

It’s an interesting juxtaposition between sweet and savory, and honestly, I’ve never had a chai like this before. I think anyone that likes houjicha and matcha should try it, for the unique experience if nothing else. This tea is fine plain, but I like it with just a dash of vanilla almond milk, just because I find a fuller, creamy mouthfeel suits it nicely. Even though the matcha powder on the tea leaves is only good for the first steep, it’s totally worth it to resteep the houjicha and spices and enjoy the tea sans matcha on a second steep to enjoy that flavor as well… it’s almost like getting two teas in one!

Flavors: Anise, Cardamom, Ginger, Grass, Licorice, Roasted, Spicy, Wood

190 °F / 87 °C 2 min, 0 sec 2 tsp 12 OZ / 354 ML

Love this tea! I’ll have to review it next time I brew some.

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Love this tea! I’ll have to review it next time I brew some.

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Hi! I’m Sara, a middle-aged librarian living in southern Idaho, USA. I’m a big ol’ sci-fi/fantasy/anime geek that loves fandom conventions, coloring books, simulation computer games, Japanese culture, and cats. Proud genderqueer asexual (she/they) and supporter of the LGBTQ+ community. I’m also a chronic migraineur. As a surprise to no one, I’m a helpless tea addict with a tea collecting and hoarding problem! (It still baffles me how much tea I can cram into my little condo!) I enjoy trying all sorts of teas… for me tea is a neverending journey!

Favorite Flavors:

I love sampling a wide variety of teas! For me the variety is what makes the hobby of tea sampling so fun! While I enjoy trying all different types of teas (pure teas, blends, tisanes), these are some flavors/ingredients I enjoy:
-Sweet/licorice root/stevia
-Bergamot (in moderation)

Disliked Flavors:

There are not many flavors or ingredients that I don’t like. These include:
-Bananas/banana flavoring
-Hemp/CBD teas
-Smoke-scented teas/heavy smoke flavors (migraine trigger)
-Perfumey teas/extremely heavy floral aromas (migraine trigger)
-Gingko biloba (migraine trigger)
-Chamomile (used in blends as a background note/paired with stronger flavors is okay)
-Extremely spicy/heated teas
-Medicinal flavors/Ginseng
-Metallic flavors
-Overly strong artificial flavorings

With the exception of bananas and migraine triggers, I’ll pretty much try any tea at least once!

Steeping Parameters:

I drink tea in a variety of ways! For hot brews, I mostly drink my teas brewed in the western style without additions, and for iced tea, I drink teas mostly brewed in the cold brew style without additions. Occassionally I’ll change that up. I use the https://octea.ndim.space/#/ app for water-to-tea ratios and use steep times to my preferences.

My Rating Scale:

90-100 – Top tier tea! These teas are among my personal favorites, and typically I like to keep them stocked in my cupboards at all times, if possible!

70-89 – These are teas that I personally found very enjoyable, but I may or may not feel inclined to keep them in stock.

50-69 – Teas that fall in this range I enjoyed, but found either average, lacking in some way, or I’ve had a similar tea that “did it better.”

21-49 – Teas in this range I didn’t enjoy, for one reason or another. I may or may not finish them off, depending on their ranking, and feel no inclination to restock them.

20-1 – Blech! My Tea Hall of Shame. These are the teas that most likely saw the bottom of my garbage can, because I’d feel guilty to pass them onto someone else.

Note that I only journal a tea once, not every time I drink a cup of it. If my opinion of a tea drastically changes since my original review, I will journal the tea again with an updated opinion and change my rating. Occassionally I revisit a tea I’ve reviewed before after a year or more has passed.


My Cupboard on Steepster reflects teas that I have sampled and logged for review, and is not used as an inventory for teas I currently own at the present moment. An accurate and up-to-date listing of my current tea inventory can be viewed here: https://tinyurl.com/xjt9ptx3 . I am open to tea trades (within the United States only!) at this time. Note that I will not trade teas that I currently have in a quantity less than 50g (samplers, 1oz packages, etc.) or any teas that are currently still sealed/unopened in my cupboard.

Contact Info:

Feel free to send me a Steepster PM, or alternatively, check the website URL section below; it goes to a contact form that will reach my personal e-mail.


Idaho, United States



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