Santa Cruz was our last stop on our honeymoon/road trip. We were lucky enough to pick up a local free paper the day that Chaikana was featured on the cover. We never would have found it otherwise, but its a great little shop with a very knowledgeable, enthusiastic owner. I wish we had more time to spend perusing his wares. We got a great sampling of pu-erh, and some lovely jade rings, and a nice oolong (Ban Shan).
Chaikhana is a must go if you are a serious lover of Chinese tea in the Santa Cruz area. They have a phenomenal collection of pu-erhs (loose, tuocha, cakes) and are passionately fanatical about great tea from small farmers. Say hi to David and Marilee Wright the owners or Barry long time tea guy in Santa Cruz and tell them I said hi too.
I'd like to give a recommendation also for Chaikana. Not only have they an extensive collection of teas that are very special and always hold discoveries for me, their shop is filled with antiques of interest: tea pots, gaiwans, bowls, and all sorts of other things. Every time I go I wind up with several purchases. David and Marilee were a delight to know from the day I met them. Highly recommended.
How good is Chaikhana's selection of matcha? I know the New Leaf's in town carry Domatcha. I've personally bought Domatcha (premium grade) before and also bought my own stash from Japan before. What I can get of Domatcha isn't bad, but not as good as what I bought from Japan.