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Enjoying a Japanese Onsen

Our two day train ride left Todd and I in a random Northern Japanese town called Asamushi. We had half a day before our next train would take us to Sapporo, so we decided to use the time to clean up. In Japan that means one thing: Onsen, or public baths.

We walked around in circles trying to find a bath. We could see stream of hot water running naturally through the town, so we followed it until it ran under a building. We'd found our onsen.

Some onsen are huge affairs with multiple baths, both indoor and outdoor, saunas, and cold plunge pools. Others, like this one, have just a single bath filled with water from a naturally occurring hot spring. Some are mixed sex, but most are segregated by gender.

Get 10% off Ryokucha and New Vivid Brewpot

On Samovar

This week I want to tell you a little about our Samovar Organic Ryokucha green tea, our take on the classic genmaicha. Samovar Ryokucha is not a pure green tea, but a savory blend of our organic Japanese green tea delicately tossed with toasted rice kernels and our finest organicmatcha, a powdered Japanese green tea. The result is something completely new: the rice adds a satisfying depth to balance the bright flavors of the green tea; the matcha dissolves completely into the brew creating creating a vibrant green color and a milky smooth infusion.

I often drink our Ryokucha as a part of my morning ritual. It has just enough caffeine to give me a morning boost and I love waking to the smell of grassy fields on a hot summer day. It's the perfect complement to a breakfast bagel with lox, or stop by the Samovar Tea Lounge and order a pot to go along with our Tea Soup with Salmon.

I'm also excited to introduce you to the new Samovar Vivid Brewpot. One of the pleasures of drinking tea is taking the time to slow down and be present, watching as the tea tranforms, with leaves unfurling and a brilliant color spreading throughout the pot. It's a simple thing. And a beautiful thing. This unique teapot lets you watch the whole show, and a steel mesh filter in the lid strains the leaves when you are ready to serve.

Now's a great time to try our Ryokucha--or to restock! This week only you can order both products from our online shop at a special price.Enter Coupon Code: VIVIDRYOKU and receive 10% off through this Tuesday, September 25, 2012.

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