After craving a top quality Japanese Green Tea, I tried a variety of teas at my local coffee places (Peets, Starbucks, etc). While they have good coffee, I was less than impressed with their tea, as well as their annoying habit of serving tea in lip-burning, tea-blanching, boiling hot water.
Luckily, there is a fantastic tea bar in Berkeley, CA called Far Leaves. Not only do they have a variety of green teas, they have a large variety all kinds of teas. Each tea is freshly imported and clearly marked with an expiration date. The manager and employee happily allowed me to sample several teas, and spent time teaching me the best way to prepare each of them.
I ended up buying an excellent Japanese Green Tea called , which is infused for less than 60 seconds in 160 degree (F) water.
I asked the employee how their business was doing, and he replied, 'well, it is a tea bar...'