“We’d like to invite people with our selection
of 40 kinds of tea, which come from Taiwan and Japan,” said
Tony Yang, who owns and operates the tea house with his wife
Mie Tsukuda. “Our tea is enjoyed through taste, sight,
and smell,” Yang added.
A fountain, a stone sculpture, and the pleasant sound of flowing
water welcome guests into the tea house’s soothing atmosphere.
Antique and contemporary Chinese furnishings were obtained
from a Chinese shop in O‘ahu. “We wanted to create a sophisticated
image inside the tea-house,” Tsukuda said.
When customers come, Yang and Tsukuda always offer advice on
choosing a tea, and they show how to brew it. Taiwanese tea,
they said, has a pungent yet delicate
smell compared to Japanese tea. “If you want a relaxed effect on your body,
you will choose Taiwanese tea,” Yang said.
Japanese tea has a deeper taste, he added, and a reputation for good health.
It contains vitamins C, B, and E, amino acids, and caffeine. Some of the Japanese
teas are thought to help prevent cancer, and reduce cholesterol, and are antibacterial
Cha no ma orders teas directly from Taiwan’s tea factories. Japanese teas
come through a wholesaler called K’s planet, Inc.
Instructions for drinking Taiwanese and Japanese teas differ. Drink Taiwanese
tea between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit, Yang said. Japanese tea requires a
water temperature of 120 degrees.
When you drink Taiwanese tea, you should prepare Chaike (a bamboo case), two
cups of Nomi and Kagi (cups of drink and smell), a pot and a filter. “Steeping
Taiwanese tea gets longer from the second cup. You should count 15 seconds longer
each time you pour hot water into the pot,” Yang said.
It usually takes one minute to steep Japanese tea,” said Kazuhito Yoshikawa, “After
the second cup, just subtract 15 seconds for each cup.”
Recommended teas at Cha no mas are Jade and Oriental Beauty from Taiwan, Gyokuro
and Sencha Ohkawa from Japan. The name Jade came from the green color of the
wet and open leaves. The tea itself is fragrant and floral, and it has a sweet
Oriental Beauty is a sweet, brown, Taiwanese Oolong-flavored tea with an aroma
of honey and mint. It is good for hangovers and people who are on a diet.
Gyokuro is one of the most famous Japanese teas, widely enjoyed for its rich
and sweet taste. Sencha Ohkawa is also a common Japanese tea with a rich and
flavorful taste from the tea leaves themselves.
Cha no ma Tea House also provides blended teas in flavors such as rose, osmanthus,
orchid, and coconut. “Your request is always welcome, and we will make
your own special tea,” Tsukuda says, “We will also have new teas
on our menu such as Pikake and Aloalo. This will be a good experience of bringing
Hawai‘i into the tea world.”
131 Kaiulani Ave, King’s Village 2F
Open daily: 10 a.m.-11 p.m.
20 percent discount for all HPU students