How to make tea from wild rice in Japan

The Japan Tea Garden (JTGF) in Fukuoka, Japan, is one of the best places in the world to enjoy some of Japan’s best teas, thanks to its extensive tea garden. 

Tea garden tea bags have been used to make teas from wild barley for over 100 years, and the JTGF in Fukusan was the first one to produce a tea that was a true “wild rice” tea. 

But when the tea garden opened in 2010, there was a serious lack of wild rice. 

The JTIF opened in 2015, and has since grown into one of Japans most well-known tea gardens. 

A year later, a team of international tea enthusiasts, including me, decided to go and collect wild rice tea bags to make a batch of their own. 

It was a bit of a challenge, but we managed to get some tea bags that were as fresh as the ones we’d bought from the JTFG. 

We were lucky to be able to make the trip to Fukusans tea garden, which is a popular destination for Japanese tourists. 

Here are my top tips for making a good, fresh, and delicious Japanese tea.

1.

Choose a tea bag with a label that’s very descriptive and detailed. 

I would have preferred to find a tea with a name like “Jakob’s tea,” or even “Koji” instead of “Boko.” 

If you want to use wild rice, I’d suggest looking for wild rice bags with labels that are very descriptive. 

This way, you can easily distinguish between the tea and wild rice being made. 

2. 

You can get a lot of tea bags for around $5. 

3. 

Be careful with the tea bag. 

4. 

If it’s going to be used to brew a tea, use a bag that’s at least two inches long and three inches wide. 

5.

Make sure the tea leaves are clean. 

6. 

Wear a mask. 

7.

Don’t use too much water. 

8. 

Take care of the bags. 

9. 

Do not open them too soon. 

10. 

Keep the tea fresh. 

11. 

Get some leaves and make tea with them. 

12. 

Forget the “flavors” of the tea.

13. 

Make sure that the leaves aren’t bruised. 

14. 

Don’t be too picky about the tea that you use. 

15. 

When you get your tea, take a sample to the JTCG.

16. 

Use a spoon to stir it in. 17. 

Have the tea made with the leaves that you get. 

18. 

Drain the tea before adding water.

19. 

Clean the tea with water.