Kudzu Tea

Japanese Kudzu Tea

I’m heading home for the holidays and that means omiyage galore!  Although Tokyo is filled with nicely-packaged omiyage year round, it gets even more fabulous this season for those traveling home for the New Year or giving gifts to their bosses and relatives.  Last week, I came across this kudzu tea set in a distressed book box and wrapped in vintage maps.  I wanted to buy it so badly, but having never tried kudzu tea, I thought I’d try one first.

Japanese Kudzu Tea

This tea is made from – yup, kudzu: those invasive, relentless vines that cover a lot of the landscape of the southern US.  It actually has some unique medicinal benefits including improving colds, fevers, eye pain, menopause, cardiovascular disease, and most interesting of all – alcoholism.

Powdered Japanese Kudzu Tea

Kudzu tea comes in form of a powder.  I was surprised that this ‘tea’ is quite thick and a bit sticky even when diluted properly.  The texture and taste reminded me of unsweetened tapioca pudding.  I kept resisting the urge to change it into a dessert base.  Hidden in the powder were these two adorable little rice crackers in the shape of a ball and blowfish – a nice surprise and too cute.  Overall, my husband likes it a lot, but I’m more of a fan of the packaging, which is such a shame because it really is so pretty!


8 thoughts on “Kudzu Tea

  1. The packaging just screams cute! I bet I won’t be able to bring myself to open it :p
    What does it taste like? I have no idea what kudzu is really…..

    • Haha it’s a vine that is native to Japan and China, but someone brought it over to the States a long time ago so it grows like wildfire! It tastes kind of like.. very slightly sweetened gelatin soup. Or tapioca!

  2. I did not understand what flavor it has, because I don’t know any of the things that you wrote …
    But one thing is for sure I wouldn’t dare ever open a package so nice :-)

  3. Highly interesting …. esp. its purposes … menopause and alcoholism. :D I don’t think it will suffice…. unless this tea taste like beer. :D

  4. Oh, great post!!! Such pretty packaging indeed! I must admit, the first few sips I was really suspicious, did not like it much… the texture… too gooey…. but I love how warm it makes me feel, so I’m a big fan now! :) I love your blog, by the way, your food posts make me so hungry all the time!

    • Aw that’s such a great compliment :) Maybe I need to give kudzu tea another try. Or maybe I could dilute it a bit more so it’s a bit less gooey! I’ll keep my eye out for it again. Keep warm tonight and tomorrow – we’re supposed to get a bit of snow again!

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