Sunday, November 29, 2015

Tea Press Japanese Roasters @ Damansara Uptown

Ami Sugiyama & her team of Japanese & Malaysian 'tea sommeliers' are brewing a unique experience in Damansara Uptown, eager to introduce more locals in the Klang Valley to the nuances of Japanese tea. Serving a stimulating range of tea from Shizuoka, Tea Press is meant to be a casual venue where uninitiated customers won't feel intimidated - sit at the counter, order from an easy-to-interpret menu, & watch as the team goes through the soothing process of preparing your beverages.

The selection spans basic green tea & beyond, with variations like genmaicha & hojicha, plus tea blended with citrus elements (mildly tangy) or with raspberries & cranberries, or with cinnamon & chilli (toasty but not spicy). Each pot, which supplies several pourings of tea, costs between RM10 & RM12. Note: Tea Press plans to open a second outlet next year in Subang.

The tea's lovely to sip on its own, with simultaneously pure but multifaceted flavours. Tea Press also takes a contemporary tack with options like espresso-style hojicha (RM10; this has a bit of a 'burnt' taste) & a tea smoothie mixed with avocado (RM15; it's mellow). Might be fun to experiment with trying different varieties to figure out your preferences for Japanese tea.

 A compact menu of hot, rice-heavy meals complements the tea: classic comfort fare like mackerel-topped ochazuke (RM20, served with Japanese pickles, egg & simmered veggies), onigiri with fillings like ginger chicken or salmon (RM25) & chimaki sticky rice dumplings wrapped with lotus leaves & stuffed with chicken & mushrooms (RM20). The food aims for authenticity.

No absence of desserts: Our favourite is the sakura mochi rice cake with a red bean paste centre, presented in an edible cherry blossom leaf (RM5) - enjoyably glutinous, with resonant flavours. There are also warabimochi bracken starch jelly covered with sweet soybean flour (RM7), crunchy rusk-style biscuits in flavours like green tea, caramel or cinnamon, an interesting daifuku mochi that conceals a fresh white grape inside (RM5), as well as green tea anpan bread rolls with red bean paste (RM5; ours was overheated a little; if that happens, wait for it to cool slightly).

Tea Press Japanese Roasters
46G, Jalan SS 21/39, Damansara Uptown, Petaling Jaya, Selangor. Open Tues-Sun, 11am-9pm

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16 comments:

  1. I love their facade and sign with the blue and the decor, very attractive and welcoming, Sean! You know I love tea so this post has made my day!

    Oh! Have you ever purchased Twinings Tea? It is in square tin canisters...I am referring to loose tea, not the bags. I have a recommendation for you, and all you need is a teapot and the teaball that holds the tea. Put one tsp of Jasmine and one tsp of Earl Grey and let it steep in your teapot for 5 minutes. Pour and enjoy. It is a lovely blend. :)

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    1. Linda: i like the facade too - it reminds of some cheerful european sweets shop, heh :) i have tried twinings at cafes, but i've never brewed it myself - thank you for the wonderful and thoughtful tips :)

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  2. Not into tea, any kind but I don't mind Japanese green tea and I am all for Japanese cuisine especially their presentation - every dish is a work of art.

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    1. Suituapui: yeah, the attention to detail is absolutely admirable :)

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  3. We bought a lot of tea from Japan this time, from hojicha, match to gyokuro, Maybe should do a weekend kitchen with these tea, hehehe.

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    1. CK: can try to find a way to infuse some of the tea into your food recipes! :D

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  4. I only recently learned how much work goes into tea making. It has similar complexities as wine and coffee. A house dedicated to tea seems very appropriate.

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    1. The Yum List: i'm still very much a novice when it comes to tea appreciation, but i agree that it's great to have places like this where we can learn :)

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  5. Authenticity sounds good...looking forward to the chimaki rice dumplings..and the interesting teas =)

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    1. Ulric: yeah, i like how the food here actually matches very well with the tea ... subtle flavours, not overpowering :)

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  6. I love how everything is so dainty and cute! Almost too hard to eat them!

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    1. Iamthewitch: ya, it was nice to reflect on the craftsmanship here! :D

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  7. This place definitely give me a ZEN feel~~

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    1. Choi Yen: quintessentially japanese, heh :D

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  8. Thanks your blog is awesome.
    Videocon offers one of the best prepaid service in Gujrat.

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  9. Hi there! Nice stuff, do keep me posted when you post again something like this!
    tea matcha

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