Few days ago, we stumbled upon Tea Press, The Japanese Tea Roasters in Damansara Uptown that’s barely one week old. Japanese cafes are less common in Malaysia so without further ado we went it to see what was brewing.
The teas here are imported from Shizuoka, a prefecture in Japan known for tea agriculture. That’s not the only thing that’s from Japan. The boss and the chef are imported from Japan as well (LOL!). After a chit chat with the boss, she mentioned to us that there’s also a “Tea Press” in Shibuya run by her team and now she would like to share Japanese teas with Malaysians. The teas are brewed in water boiled in an iron pot, to soften the inherent hard water characteristics.
We tried two types of Hoji Tea – the classic Hoji Tea that’s roasted and naturally low in caffeine (RM 10), and the Cinnamon Booster (RM 12). The Hoji Tea has an intense flavor of green tea plus a wonderful aroma of roasted rice. The Cinnamon Booster has the same flavors but with an additional dash of chili and cinnamon powder. The teas are only RM8 if you order it with the set meals.
There’s not too many items on the food menu at the moment. The Ochaduke Set (RM 20) consists of a plate of assorted vegetables, mackerel + seaweed on Japanese rice, and a pot dashi (seaweed) soup to be poured on the rice.
Flavors are light as you would in Japan and you could feel the meticulousness in this set – the mackerel pieces crackle despite they are so dainty, while the vegetables are placed neatly.
The Onigiri Set consists of two rice balls of the day, also served with an assortmet of vegetables (RM 25).
The Chimaki Set (RM 20) – consisting of glutinous rice, chicken, mushroom and bamboo shoots wrapped in lotus leaf. It’s a little pricey on its own, but it’s FOC if you order it with the Onigiri Set.
For desserts, Tea Press carries a few classic Japanese desserts such as the daifuku (strawberry wrapped in mochi) and various types of mochi. The daifuku was sold out on the day we visited, so we tried the sakura mochi (RM 5), coconut jelly (RM 5) and home made biscuits (RM 7).
The sakura mochi has a curious mix of sweet and savory. The red bean of course being the sweet, and the savory being the cherry blossom leaf that’s lightly briny.
I was shocked when the so-called “home made biscuits” were placed on our table – I thought it looked more like dried tofu or something. But don’t judge a biscuit by its cover because the flavors will surprise you. The biscuits are super crunchy I could hear them crunch in Gary’s mouth as he chowed them down. The texture resembles croutons so they are somewhat more “bread-like” than “cookie-like); and when infused with caramel, these biscuits are addictive. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
As for the jelly, it’s a simple concoction of coconut jelly topped with strawberries. It’s nice, but a little too plain for me.
Address : 46 Jalan SS 21/ 39, Damansara Utama, 47400 Petaling Jaya.