At first glance, it may look like wine – but the bottles at Royal Blue Tea’s Chigasaki Boutique are actually filled with some of the best tea Japan has to offer. Royal Blue Tea, a company based in Chigasaki, Kanagawa, is dedicated to helping its customers appreciate tea in a new way: in elegant social settings, paired with meals as a great alternative to alcoholic beverages.
Since 2016, visitors to Royal Blue Tea’s Chigasaki Boutique have been able to experience the company’s premium bottled teas in a unique setting: the boutique’s very own tasting room. Visitors are invited to try a variety of teas in the sleek, elegant space while learning more about them from knowledgeable tea sommeliers (including in English). It’s an experience even dedicated fans of Japanese tea will no doubt find memorable.
Garnering perhaps the most attention of all the teas produced at Royal Blue Tea is Kyoto Uji Tencha, also known as The Uji. This green tea which, as the name suggests, is created with tencha tea leaves harvested in Uji, Kyoto, was served at the G7 Ise-Shima Summit in 2016. The Uji has been praised for its full-bodied flavor that also contains a touch of sweetness and a sparkling clarity.
The bottles used by Royal Blue Tea aren’t just for show. They help preserve the flavor of the tea, which is brewed in cold water over a period of days, by keeping oxygen out (that’s why the bottles are sealed with glass, not cork). In addition, Royal Blue Tea is certified under SGS-HACCP, an international food safety standard. That may be why its teas are served not only at the G7, but in high-class hotels and restaurants and in Japan Airlines’ first-class cabins.
Those interested in experiencing Japanese tea in an elegant new way should definitely start planning a trip to Chigasaki.
Royal Blue Tea Chigasaki Boutique
2-8 Honjukucho, Chigasaki, Kanagawa 253-0014
Hours: Monday-Saturday, 10am-6pm
Prices: ¥400-¥900 per glass, ¥300 seating charge (tax not included)
English guidance available
Counter (6 seats); reservations recommended
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