Our tea journey experience started immediately after takeoff from Chicago bound for Tokyo. As the plane leveled out
stewardesses walked up and down the aisles offering green tea. This isn’t just any green tea as evident of its bright green jade color. This was indeed matcha. Many passengers took advantage of this Japanese Ceremonial Tea as we start our 14 hour flight over Earth’s largest ocean. The flavor was just as light as the color, no bitterness, but just a nice mild green tea flavor.
Stopping in the duty free shop in Tokyo upon arrival proved to be a trip down tea product lane. Thirty varieties of truffles, chocolate covered wafers, thin pancake like crisps and chocolate cake were all headlined by match and green tea ingredients. In the past 15 years, we have been through Narita Airport 10 times and never have we seen so many tea infused products.
We stopped in between gates to get some sushi. The style was very similar to what we find in Albany, but it was served with three large thick porcelain cups of, you guessed it… matcha. The specialty rolls and two regular rolls came to $10, so we went back for seconds. By time all our food was consumed our table was littered with those black and white matcha mugs as if they were beer cans after a frat party.
After settling into Thailand our first business meeting took place at Sila Tea Café. Here the team buckled down for 4 hours on the second floor balcony to do some brainstorming. We first ordered a variety of spring rolls, bubble teas and a hot taro latte (which I have never heard or seen before). The spring rolls were delicious especially spinach and cheese and the hot taro latte was sweet, creamy and so smooth.
And the journey continues…