Hojicha Flavor: learn what does Hojicha taste like

The hojicha flavor is unique in the world of tea. This tea is produced through a long roasting process, and during that time the leaves transform in color, taste and aroma.

In this article, we are going to answer the question what does hojicha taste like. We’ll compare the hojicha taste to other types of teas and we will give you a short hojicha flavor pairing.

Let’s get started! 🤎


What does hojicha taste like?

Hojicha tea is a type of Japanese green tea that is distinct from other green teas due to its unique roasting process.

The tea leaves used for hojicha are roasted, which gives the tea a distinctive flavor and aroma.

Hojicha flavor profile

Hojicha tea has a rich, nutty, and slightly smoky taste. The roasting process reduces the grassy and vegetal notes typically found in other green teas, resulting in a milder and more earthy flavor profile. The tea has a reddish-brown color and a smooth, velvety texture. Some people also describe hojicha as having hints of caramel or toasty flavors.

Roasting process

The roasting process used for hojicha tea also lowers its caffeine content compared to other green teas, making it a popular choice for those who are more sensitive to caffeine or prefer a milder tea.

Overall, hojicha tea offers a pleasant and comforting taste experience that differs from other green teas, making it a great choice for those seeking a unique and soothing tea experience.


 Hojicha flavor video guide


What is Hojicha?

Hojicha is a popular type of tea in Japan. Although the color of the leaves and liquid of the tea look more like a black tea, it’s actually a type of green tea. The leaves are steamed after harvest in order to deactivate the enzymes that cause oxidation. 

Once the leaves are steamed, rolled and dried, they are ready to be roasted. Hojicha is made by roasting the leaves either in a hot pan or roasting machine for a longer time. If the farmer is producing partially roasted kamairicha, another hojicha flavored tea, he will heat the tea leaves for less time at a lower heat. In the next section, we will discuss what does hojicha taste like. 

If you’re interested in learning more about what hojicha is and how its made, you can read the article on 👉 Everything You Need to Know About Hojicha


Is there Another Hojicha Flavored Tea

As we mentioned before, there is a partially roasted tea called Kamairicha that may be considered the closest cousin to hojicha. This tea has some of the roasted hojicha flavor, but it also shares a lot of these vegetal characteristics with sencha. So while it is a hojicha flavored tea, it really is in the middle between sencha and hojicha.

Genmaicha is another hojicha flavored tea, made by mixing tea leaves with toasted rice. The toasted rice imparts a nice warm cereal or caramel flavor onto the tea, which makes for a nice afternoon or evening treat.

If you want to learn more about this famous toasted rice tea, you can learn all about it in our 👉 Essential Genmaicha Guide


What Flavor is Hojicha Most Similar to?

So what is hojicha flavor? If you really had to pick one flavor the hojicha taste was most similar, it would probably be coffee. The flavor of hojicha is not as strong as coffee, so if you are a seasoned coffee drinker you may find it a bit weak, but it does bear a resemblance.

If you want to learn about the other teas that taste like coffee, you can find them in our guide to 👉 Tea That Tastes Like Coffee


Best Hojicha Flavor Pairing 

If you’re looking for hojicha tea flavor friends, it’s best to go for foods that have a similar profile are things like toasted almonds, roasted ginger and chocolate. In general, anything roasted is going to be your friend, and there is a plethora of Japanese roasted snacks like senbei to choose from.

With hojicha flavor pairings you can go much more on the darker side than you would with matcha pairings for example. The darker roasted flavor of hojicha seems to pair much better with chocolate.

If you’re interested in matcha flavor pairings, you can read this guide 👉 What Flavors are Good with Matcha


Hojicha Flavor Pudding and other Hojicha Flavored Desserts

You may come across hojicha flavor pudding and other hojicha flavored desserts and these are essentially made by mixing hojicha powder with other ingredients. Hojicha flavored cookies, cake and ice cream are all some that come to mind.

Hojicha powder is exactly what it sounds like, it's a powder made from ground up hojicha leaves. As is the case with matcha, when you grind up these tea leaves they become more concentrated in hojicha flavor. Hojicha powder is a good choice for desserts because it really imparts a strong hojicha taste that comes through the cream and sugar. 


Which Hojicha Should You Start With?

If you are sensitive to caffeine or you just prefer this more warming and soothing hojicha flavor, we would recommend you try out one of our hojicha teas! After traveling around Japan for the past few years, we have met with dozens of farmers and sampled lots of different types of roasted tea. We ultimately decided on a small handful of our favorites to share with people all around the world. 

This hojicha from Mr. Noike in Kyoto that is well liked by the Nio Teas community. Because this tea is grown in the middle of a forest, it is partially shaded throughout the day and therefore it develops a natural sweetness.

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