Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic


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Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby Chip » Dec 17th, '09, 16:09

NEW! Official Japanese Green Tea Vendor Guide: Hibiki-an.com Consider this a perennial topic for Japanese teas from Hibiki-an.

http://www.hibiki-an.com/

Official Japanese Green Tea Vendor Guide. Let's see what happens with this wild and crazy idea. You can view the main Japanese TeaVendor Guide here: http://www.teachat.com/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=11556 and the main TeaVendor Guide here: http://www.teachat.com/viewforum.php?f=60
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Re: "Official" Hibiki-an Japanese tea topic

Postby Oni » Dec 20th, '09, 11:36

Blended sencha is at sale here, last year I missed out, but this year I will not.
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Re: "Official" Hibiki-an Japanese tea topic

Postby Chip » Dec 20th, '09, 15:14

Hibiki-an according to their site is a grower/seller of Uji Japanese teas. They like to do special/limited edition seasonal teas like the blends mentioned by Oni.

2009 is the first harvest I have missed completely (so far) from Hibiki-an as I got too busy trying other vendors. I have had generally all very good experiences with their teas with the exception of the lowest grades gyokuro which I ended up using for blending with sencha that needed a little something.

I have tried most of the Asamushi and the Fukamushi grades of Sencha except Pinnacle with very positive results. I like the tiered grading of their teas, enables you to try a lower grade, better, better yet, and best within a particular type of tea. This is educational especially for beginners to Japanese teas.

Hibiki-an wrote:Try once ...

"Try once" was once a mantra on the forum IM, as many became initiated to Japanese greens.
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Re: "Official" Hibiki-an Japanese tea topic

Postby Tead Off » Dec 21st, '09, 02:11

Both Sencha Premium and Pinnacle Sencha get 2 thumbs up by me. Can't think of 2 better senchas from anyone.
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Re: "Official" Hibiki-an Japanese tea topic

Postby Oni » Dec 21st, '09, 02:50

I had their sencha super premium, and I was satisfied, although it wasn`t hand rolled, very few are actually hand rolled, the leaves are round instead of flat, I tried last year maiko`s shuppin, o-cha`s kirameki, and horaido`s shuppin HG, these all were super high quality asamushi, and sofar the best green teas I have had, I tried a few chinese greens but unfortunately nothing could stand up to these teas.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby britt » Apr 8th, '10, 22:11

I've placed several tea orders with Hibiki-an over the last 6 months and I think they're very overpriced for the quality of their products. The teabags seem to be the exception. I've given them as gifts and they are very popular, although I haven't tried them myself.

I was particularly unimpressed by their Super-Premium matcha. Although not terribly expensive I didn't find it to be cometitive with other cheaper matchas. I haven't found any of Hibiki-an's Super Premium products to live up to the quality level implied by their title.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby beachape » Apr 10th, '10, 15:11

I've ordered their lower grade sencha and fukamushi sencha a couple times. For the price the fukamusi sencha superior is very nice.

Also I find their website to be most aesthetically pleasing and user friendly compared to other tea sites.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby Chip » Apr 10th, '10, 15:44

I seem to have gotten mostly their Superior and Premium grades of LEAF.

I have been very happy with these grades, except the Gyokuro Superior ... but I learned that I just don't really care for cheaper Gyokuro in general. I used the Gyo Superior in blending which worked out great, so nothing was lost.

Some of the higher grade sencha/fuka are Sae Midori that can come off as mild. More leaf/hotter water usually brings forward a more flavorful experience.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby kungfucha » May 25th, '10, 10:32

Stay away from this shop! We bought a wide range of products here, the average quality is quite good, however I've experienced the worst customers support ever among dozens of suppliers from China and Japan. The owner mr. Atsushi Yasui was very rude, unfriendly and unkind with me and he hasn't been collaborative at all when we've asked his help to solve some customs clearance problems; their houjicha has been analyzed by the customs and returned to the sender due to lead residues exceding the maximum allowed values. They refused to refund me!
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby Chip » May 25th, '10, 12:34

Moderator post.

Please note, the previous poster is posting from Italy which is notorious for customs problems.

Also note this is a first time poster on the forum.

It is customary to permit rebuttal from a vendor who has received a negative review. I will be emailing the owner of hibiki-an and giving him the opportunity to respond.

If he wants to respond, he will be instructed to contact me first so that there is some order maintained.

I think a rule change may be in order. Currently nominations to TeaVendor must come from someone who has been a member for 6 months. However there is nothing preventing a first time poster from posting a review, positive or negative ... perhaps this is unwise.

I would not consider this censorship as this would simply reserve to privilege of posting reviews for established members only!
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby britt » Jun 23rd, '10, 21:43

I've also found the owner to be rather arrogant, and if he doesn't like what you say he just won't respond. I previously accused him of refusing to post bad reviews. He refused to post mine. In all fairness, one review was a 5 star and one was a 1 star and he didn't post either.

I have found some of Hibiki-an's teaware to be pretty good although others (high-end Raku matcha chawan) can be found elsewhere for $100 less after shipping is accounted for.

The Hohryu kyusu was my second one and was well worth the price. This was a great kyusu which I finally replaced because I prefer sasame filters over metal ones. The Hohryu was quite light for it's size and got me off to a good start as a newbie. It is still available and is highly recommended to anyone who prefers screen filters even though I'd prefer to direct forum members to another vendor.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby chingwa » Jun 28th, '10, 18:35

I have to say I don't understand all the negativity here towards Hibiki-an. I have been ordering from there for 4 years now and have consistently been impressed with their quality of tea and also their service. Shipping is always impressively quick, and if you order enough tea at once the shipping is usually included at no extra charge.

They have a nice range of green teas to suit both the beginner and the connoisseur. Granted not every single tea that I've tried from them is to my liking, but I can say the same about every other tea vendor I've tried as well.

In fact I just received a little package of tea from them today... for free... a nice little surprise in my mailbox. If I remember correctly they did the same thing last year... who sends their customers free samples these days??? (especially when they're on the other side of the world...)

I'd highly recommend Hibiki-an to anyone.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby TokyoB » Jun 28th, '10, 19:52

I have found Hibiki-an to be a good vendor but it is true that they will not post negative reviews. I tried posting a negative review of one of their teas and they emailed me asking for details. They sent some additional tea for free. So I do think their customer service is rather good but everyone should be aware that only positive reviews are posted.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby Webb » Sep 29th, '10, 04:01

Only good results with them so far and I've been ordering from them for a few years. When I asked to see high res photo of a teaware item, they sent them the same day.

I usually only order gyokuro from them, the kuradashi version is a favorite of mine.
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Re: Hibiki-an "Official" Japanese tea topic

Postby Domn » Oct 2nd, '10, 13:09

I've ordered farmers shincha and sencha superior a few years ago.
Didnt ordered anything since, but not because i wasnt satisfied but ive just want to try more diferent vendors. Only problem with this vendor is lack of middle class sencha. But my friend ordered their top sencha and he was very pleased with quality.
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