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Transcription of Tea & Wine Pairing with Gary Vaynerchuk and Kevin Rose

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Jesse Jacobs: Hi!  I’m Jesse Jacobs, I’m here today at Samovar Tea Lounge in San Francisco with my friends Gary Vaynerchuck and Kevin Rose and the great studio audience and we’re here to taste tea and wine for the first time ever live.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Ever!

Jesse Jacobs: Tea is very intimidating and wine is intimidating, I don’t know much about wine and so, I’d love to hear your perspective on how to taste wine for the ignoramus.

And then Kevin’s passion about both so…

Kevin Rose: Not so much… I mean, I like to drink wine.  I don’t know much as Gary does but tea is kind of my thing.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You really exploded in the tea category over the last 3 or 4 years right?

Kevin Rose: Its something I’m passionate about for about the last 10 years or so… so drinking it, tasting it, getting tea certification.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But on the last 3 or 4 you really uped it?

Kevin Rose: Yeah, for sure, I mean that’s when I started taking classes, I was like really legit, got out of the bagged tea world and more of the loose stuff.  Started coming to places like Samovar Tea Lounge where I get to learn more about tea and yeah…

Jesse Jacobs: You got rid of soda in your office and replace it with tea.

Kevin Rose: Well, unfortunately…

Jesse Jacobs: Almost?

Kevin Rose: Yeah, I think some people still drink sodas… geeks like their soda, but yeah we have a lot of teas.

Jesse Jacobs: And vodka?

Kevin Rose: And vodka, you thought them how to do that.

Jesse Jacobs: We did, we did a tea infused vodka tasting.

Gary Vaynerchuk: How did that go?

Jesse Jacobs: I think they liked it.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, they did.  There’s a special bottle…

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’ll save us a lot of time on how to drink wine.  You know, there’s nothing really all that much to it.  You just open your mouth and pour it down your throat.  I mean, it’s not that complicated.  I would say the only thing that anybody watching or the live studio audience here should know is I think that people do not smell wine enough.  I mean, that to me is probably the key.  It’s something I think is really powerful and tea as well.  I also drink a lot of tea but don’t know what is well – like the reverse in that way, but I treat it like wine and I smell tea extensively, like sometimes for like much longer than I probably should before I actually taste it.  But there’s been wines that I’ll smell for 45 minutes before I ever taste it and I kind of equate it to like movies.  My Lizzie knows that if we go out to the movies we have to get there like 6 weeks in advance because if I miss the previews I’m devastated and literally sometimes wouldn’t even watch movie.  Because the previews are such big part of the experience for me.  And I think that’s what the bouquet and wine is.  If you don’t give it the sniffy sniff I think you’re making a huge mistake.  Is that the same in tea, do you think that’s… is that as relevant or…?

Jesse Jacobs: Experience is what I get excited about tea… and you look at the variety here and that’s what amazes me.  So, you get as much variety in what it looks like as you do in taste and it’s really a journey so I could say… wine is… the difference is you can’t drink unlimited quantities of wine, right?  You have to drive home or something… I can’t but tea… you can really dive in and each infusion will get into it… it changes and evolves and the aroma is… and tasting tea first thing you look for, that’s just second.  The first thing is actual look… you want to look at the leaves and in my world any tea is good tea, the more people drink the better.  So, everyone says they have the best quality and for me – I define quality as consistency.  And so what we get is consistency of size, shape and color.  So, each of these should look uniquely different than each other.  And that’s a good tea.  That and freshness and that’s pretty much it, that’s what we look for in getting tea.

Kevin Rose: It’s fun to follow like the life of a tea though, remarkable infusions.  It’s much like wine in that way, when wine opens up with the time.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Absolutely.

Kevin Rose: Like the same things happen with the tealeaves it would actually unfold, get larger, and it release different flavors as time goes on.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I mean, what’s crazy is… and I’m sure there’s at some level there’s version in the tea world, in the wine world we always say, you know, there’s no such thing as a great wine, there’s only great bottles.  Because they all can act so differently.  Especially, as you start souring the wine and then obviously, you know I’m a humongus proponent and a loud, and obnoxious advocate of experience.  For example, I have this amazing report from a couple of my fans that go to MIT who reviewed every wine that I ever reviewed on a Monday.  When the Jets won and when the Jets lost and I actually scored wine over a course of 4 years lower on Mondays after a Jets’ lost because obviously that’s a very big passion of mine.  And I think about this all the time, this is my classic I will sum up the wine world for you in this story.  I get this email, (inaudible) gets this email twice a week.  “Hey Gary, you know I just went on a trip to Italy, it was awesome and we had this wine and it wasn’t expensive, can you get it for us?  I see on Carrier.”  Some name of some small $10 village wine in Italy and we order it for the person and we get it and they pick it up and then sure enough like clock work, 2 – 3 weeks later, we get this email, “Hey Gary, It’s John again, thank you so much for getting me that wine.  Let me ask you a question – do we get different kinds of wines here in the US?  Like do they keep the real stuff in Italy or like the non-sulfite wines and we get something different here in the US?  Because I got to be honest with you – this wine sucked and I loved it like 2 weeks ago.”  “Dear John, we get the same one.  Here’s the problem.  Three weeks ago or six weeks when you were in Italy, your BlackBerry was turned off, the kids weren’t with you, your boss wasn’t pissing you off, you were with people you love, and you were relaxed eating food in a happy and calm environment, thus the wine tasted better.  The other night when you had it, you had to walk the fucking dog, you know, you were pissed at work, the kids were screaming and the wine didn’t taste as good.”  And so, I think that there’s an enormous thing to be said for environment, culture, whom you’re with, I mean, I think that needs to be talked about more in general.  I’m sure it’s kind of probably true to the tea world as well.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, it’s the whole surroundings.  You know, and it doesn’t have to be any kind of fancy setup like this, it can be a bunch of leaves and a paper cup in an airport and you can still have an amazing experience if it’s amazing to you.  But yeah, you don’t have to make a big bergamot.  But it’s the surrounding.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Are we gonna taste something?

Jesse Jacobs: Let’s do it, all right.  Like with wine… so actually I’ve never tasted wine and tea together.  So this a… a first ever… wildly exciting moment.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I’m excited.

Jesse Jacobs: You start light and work dark.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: Okay.  And we can take questions from the audience as well.  If you guys have anything… pike them out.

So we’re gonna start with a tea that we called Downy Sprouts.

Shall I hold this out here?  You can see that?

So this is called Downy Sprout.  You can see because of these little downy white hairs on here and you can either… actually…

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’m always eating everything…

Jesse Jacobs: No.  If you actually taste it, it’s a little bit nutty, a little hay maybe.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Super hay-like.

Jesse Jacobs: You wouldn’t eat it… a bowl it by any means, but you want to know that it has a vibrancy to it.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But could you eat a bowl of it.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Kevin Rose: Well, there’s some teas that you consume the entire leaf.  Like the matcha teas are ground up leaf… so the leaf called tencha that they ground up and turn to this powder, you actually consume the entire thing.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s delicious.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, you can definitely eat it.

Jesse Jacobs: So Downy Sprout – it’s a white tea.  So like white wine, you start like white… and work dark.  And we’re brewing it a device called the guywan with good water – that’s the number one thing to brew good tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Good water.

Jesse Jacobs: So quadruple filtered is what we do here, in all of our locations, second to that a bubbling brook.

Gary Vaynerchuk: A bubbling brook.

Kevin Rose: Do you have one in your house?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I mean how do you find a bubbling brook.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s what the masters say.  So otherwise filtered water.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Quadruple filtered.

Jesse Jacobs: Quadruple is good as it can get.  We opened here actually didn’t have our filtered set up and it was… I didn’t really know how much of a difference a filtered is made until we tested it and it was horrible.  It was – 3 or 4 days we opened without filtering any of our water and tea was – nasty…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Garbage.

Jesse Jacobs: Garbage.

Kevin Rose: So what type of filter are you using?  Is it like a reverse osmosis stuff?

Jesse Jacobs: We use pretty basic, they’re commercial charcoal filters, they’re just back-to-back one after the other.  And you don’t want to… I don’t know reverse osmosis… there’s one of them that takes everything out…

Kevin Rose: Right, the boiled – it catches the steam that comes out – turning it back to water.  But you don’t want that… you want to keep all the minerals on.  So usually get rid of the bad odors.

Jesse Jacobs: Exactly.  So you want a little bit of natural mineralization in there.  So this kind of tea you brew or actually all these teas in tasting in this thing called the guywan covered cup and you can actually drink at it like this… I’m not going to… we’re using it to share… but it’s a great way to see the leaf…

Gary Vaynerchuk: How important is the timing of how long you keep in the air…

Jesse Jacobs: It’s important… I mean, Americans love hyper ability, they want to know what’s the most extreme tea for weight loss – for weight gain – for caffeine – for antioxidants, and it’s hard to translate a lot of the stuff directly, what’s the exact tablespoon measurement and the exact temperature.  Generally, as you start doing it, tea is personal…

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s so clear that I’m not American.

Jesse Jacobs: So, you’re not to the extreme…

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, I just would never be able to go somewhere like that, you know, like you give me some exact thing, I’ll be pissed and never do it.  You know, but… screw that.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, so it’s personal, we air on more tea brewed for less time.  So you wan to concentrate it and then brew it in many infusions.  All right, so the first thing, smelling tea, so wanna want an aroma, you want to save some for the last guy… so you go like this… and then the first one is sort of immediate impression and you can do a deep one.  Hold it in and enjoy… see what you get.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So first one is for the immediate.

Jesse Jacobs: Just immediate gut feel and then the second one just take it all the way in.

We don’t have enough to last to everyone.

Kevin Rose: That’s good stuff.

Jesse Jacobs: So what do you get.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So how much is this?

Jesse Jacobs: So what do you smell?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Oh what I’m getting on the nose?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, aroma…

Gary Vaynerchuk: On the nose I was getting a little bit like acacia flower coming through, a little bit of a… almost like a walnut kind of finish on the nose… a little citrus play as well…

Kevin Rose: White teas in my mind are always floral teas.  Really light, you know, this isn’t gonna be something that… this is something that is good with breakfast… and then like… first thing in the morning it’s not gonna like… just kick… beat you down… but…

Jesse Jacobs: Oh, before bed… it’s really low in caffeine.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, absolutely.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s got a really buttery body, I get almost a little caramel, it’s rich, it’s a thick, when you think of a white tea – people think of water, which is why you have to have great water because it really draws up a good flavor.

Kevin Rose: I almost get like a caramel style light flavor, almost taste like a herbal tea.  And cooking a white tea it’s really hard to screw it up like you can let that steep for, you know, 3 – 5 minutes you’re not gonna get that bitter taste that you get with some green teas… you know like, like green tea.

Jesse Jacobs: Just gets super better and then you can re-infuse these leaves they just keep opening up.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You know what’s funny though, for my palette it’s almost like 10 structure, like I kind of push it a little further normally, it’s almost like the way like red wine, for example I’ll always drink the Water Valley (inaudible), you know higher tannin structure a little bit more… I actually noticed that when I steep it, at times I’ll push it a little bit further because I’m looking for a little bit more of that… kind of aggressiveness.

Jesse Jacobs: When you taste tea you want that… you want to look at the breadth… like what kind of life this have to ride on.  And though you may not do that for every customer out there because of maybe more astringent… but you want to see… it should have astringency.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I think that’s more of the really great things that tea brings to the table more so than wine is that you have a little bit more of a control of where you can kind of bring the flavor profile, whereas the wine is kind of give you what they decided.  I think that’s a very fascinating and probably more consumer friendly aspect of tea.

Jesse Jacobs: Uh-hmm.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Is that controlled?  Or you could play.  And see if you want more intensity of flavor, I mean, you know…

Jesse Jacobs: That’s why… I mean, when people say what are the exact directions to make this taste the same… it’s… you know, it’s personal, it’s part of the experience, it doesn’t taste the same every time.  It’s up to you to make it… you want it more strong in the morning, you want it more weak, you can control the caffeine by brewing it lighter, bring out more tannin by brewing it hotter and stronger.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s hotter okay?

Jesse Jacobs: I generally just boil all the water and brew it for less time if I want to do it more delicately.

Kevin Rose: I do a different way, I choose the range… like 175 for the whites and greens and then 185 for oolongs and then slightly if you’re gonna go with something like pu-erhs or black teas.

Jesse Jacobs: It sounds like you need a brewer.

Kevin Rose: Oh, I got that, awesome really, you guys just started changing the (inaudible). It’s just amazing like fully automated tea system that you put in the type of tea, the temperature, the steep time…

Gary Vaynerchuk: And just comes out.

Kevin Rose: …it will do it for you, it’s amazing.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I love the world.

Jesse Jacobs: A coffee brewery, set it at night, opens it on the morning.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s like you don’t have to think, right?  You light 3 buttons…

Kevin Rose: You could still screw up though.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can you?

Kevin Rose: Oh I mean you start pushing it, right?  Because you’re like, oh what if we ruin this taste, I can steep it for actually 2 minutes, right?  And then you try it like, you try taste all the steeping.

Jesse Jacobs: But that’s the amazing thing, often times you can even throw out the infusion but re-do the leaves.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You can water you plants too if you screwed up.  It’s not like you have to throw it out.

Jesse Jacobs: This is the best compost actually.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can we taste some wine now…

Jesse Jacobs: So, first wine on the list.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I didn’t pick the wines, by the way.

Jesse Jacobs: I was actually in Napa this weekend on some crazy stuff and was referred from… given a couple of bottles and sent to this one first vineyard here.  So we’re going to start light and work dark.  So we have 4 wines and a load of teas and so we’ll kind of intermingle it.  The first one here, so when I was… this 14 years old, yeah, I read a book called Shibumi, you guys heard of that?

Does anyone of the audience heard of it Shibumi?

Gary Vaynerchuk: It sounds like an iPhone game.

Jesse Jacobs: It probably will be.  So Shibumi.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Don’t steal that shit.

Jesse Jacobs: It will be ironic if it’s on iPhone because… it could work… it’s a Japanese word it means effortless perfection.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Exactly.

Kevin Rose: We’re streaming here, (inaudible)

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s my stuff.

Jesse Jacobs: So this was started by a guy who read this book, and the book, you guys would probably end up reading it after this.  It’s about a master assassin and lover.  And so I was 14.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I don’t have to read that book, I lived that life.

Kevin Rose: He’s Russian.

Jesse Jacobs: Actually, he’s a Russian guy and so this gentleman, we saw this wine on the menu and I was so blown away I was with a good friend of mine – it says Shibumi, how could it possibly be, I’ve never seen that word other than this fantasy book, he was my relative, high school kid.  We called him up and we said, “come on by, have a (inaudible).” And so he read the book, he named his vineyard after the book.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s amazing.

Jesse Jacobs: Effortless perfection.  So this guy Don Ross – this is the number one selling wine at French (inaudible). So there’s 300 cases a year produced and he does a (inaudible) super cool guy… and here we are tasting… so, what do we do.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Great job Kev… which is the biggest thing that people with wine, when they smell wine they do this move, but you don’t want to look weird in like a restaurant they want to keep it chilled but the key is to get your nose all up in it, like this… like so, no separation… kind of like the second sniff on the tea thing.  What do you guys are picking up on the nose.

Kevin Rose: I’ve had a cold for the last few days… so I’m really hard with it…

Jesse Jacobs: I get tropical fruit, like really rich creaminess… thick…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Are you guys picking… yeah, I think there’s definitely tropical action – like almost like a papaya guava kind of component, but before that I get a very heavy dose of oaky buttery kind of smokiness coming through.

Jesse Jacobs: Is that what oak is?  Like buttery… earthiness…

Gary Vaynerchuk: It can be… you know it’s in that vanilla aspect, it depends on the oak treatment and how young the oak is.  But it’s pretty aggressive, I mean, this is a fairly oak, you know, very California style Chardonnay.  All right, let’s give it a whirl.

Jesse Jacobs: So, you suck it…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yes, what I like you to do is maybe drink it straight which is what most people do, and then maybe the second one will go with the whole mouthwash getting deep on palette, you will see the difference of flavor.

So straight, nice, good and now…

So what do you think?

Jesse Jacobs: Green apple.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I think that’s actually the dominant flavor.  I think the dominant flavor in this wine is green apple.  It’s actually… it’s so green apple, it’s so extreme that it taste like the green apple jolly rancher but not like the rectangle – the stick.  Remember like the thin like… you know what I’m talking about, like the thin like flat thin.  That’s what this taste like a little bit to me, then if you kind of put some butter popcorn on it, on top on it, because there’s clearly a butter… there is a butter popcorn component.

Kevin Rose: I love that you know the difference in varied flavors between the green apple.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Right, the rectangle compared to the stick.

Kevin Rose: Retarded.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Because the rectangle had like holes in it, you couldn’t get all the flavor but the stick was like a – this pure melted down thing.  The flavor was just… anybody who is hardcore jolly rancher connoisseur like I am knows exactly what I’m talking about.

Do you guys remember like the stick… see…

Jesse Jacobs: Audience agrees…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Because you would be able to get like more flavor from the stick.  First of all, you’d like hurt yourself, remember that, you like cut your tongue or the top, almost like Captain Crunch Cereal, rips the top of your… you don’t like Captain Crunch Cereal.

Kevin Rose: It’s the worst dude, I hated that.  Yeah…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Oh, you like only eat like good stuff now…

Kevin Rose: No… I didn’t eat… my parents didn’t let me buy that stuff…

Gary Vaynerchuk: No…

Kevin Rose: They won’t let me get the sugar cereal, I had to had plain cereals.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Like Grape-Nuts.

Kevin Rose: Grape-Nuts…

Gary Vaynerchuk: They taste delicious by the way…

Kevin Rose: Now that you’re older… they were when you’re a little kid.

Gary Vaynerchuk: The only 2 cereals I eat are Captain Crunch worst thing for you of all time and Grape-Nuts… like (inaudible).

Kevin Rose: Cocoa Puffs?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Nope.

So this is like very quintessential California Chardonnay to me.  If this was like in a blind tasting I would never think Burgundy because it lacks the minerality that you get in the French vineyard.  It’s pretty enjoyable; the fruit is pretty at the forefront.  I wouldn’t call it a chard that would cellar as well because I’m a little bit worried about the acid structure  on the back end, it makes me feel like it’s 3 to 5 year drinking window which is more than people think white wine can age.  Most people they can drink it right away.  White wines can do much more than they’re given credit for.

Jesse Jacobs: Here’s a 2007.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I mean, for me, and a lot of people who are watching right now that watched Wine Library TV, you know I’m hypersensitive to oak.  So it’s a hair over the top on the oakiness for me.  I like the fruit to speak for itself.  I look at oak kind of like make-up.  Like I’m a big no make-up kind of guy.  And so like oak can be make-up and this has a little bit too much, not like Kiss or Demolition or the Road Warriors.  But like girl that wore too much make up.

Jesse Jacobs: So could be more balanced.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Could be more balanced.

Jesse Jacobs: It has a lot of that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But the flavors are intense which I like.

Kevin Rose: Not intense… I’m not a fan…

Gary Vaynerchuk: You are a fan or you’re not?

Kevin Rose: I’m not… I just think it’s too much…

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s true in your face.

Kevin Rose: Apple and my face, yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: no, it really is aggressive flavor profile.  You know, and for a lot of people they like that, and again, you’re right back to the American palette this is like right u that alley back to what you’re saying on the teas, exact same thing, but what I always think about with wine how food friendly it is and this could overpower… like if you were to order a nice dish grilled clean just kind of this time of year, this would slightly overpower it, I would look for a little bit more acid a little less soak.

Jesse Jacobs: Uh-hmm, interesting, all right, good.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But pretty good, you know want to disk Shinobi warriors or anything…

Jesse Jacobs: No… Shibumi…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Shabumi… I don’t need any trouble from the Shibumi…

Jesse Jacobs: No, no, hang on, I thought this was an exoteric book, I found out there’s a movie coming out shortly with Keanu Reeves – he is the master – Nicolai Hell is his name.  So, check it out… you heard it here first.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I wanna order a ticket, I’m going on fandango right now.

Jesse Jacobs: So, speaking of fish, so the next one we have, so part of what makes this exiting is we try to pick the teas that we have that are astounding and very rare and…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can we pass some of this wine for them… I mean, I feel like the crowd…

Jesse Jacobs: Do you guys like some?

Audience: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, do you want some alcohol…

Jesse Jacobs: Okay, we don’t have enough tea to pass but…

Could you grab a couple of wine glasses Alonzo…

You can start… Just wait for the glasses…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Just… come on… slight… pass it on… baby… that’s how we roll… isn’t it…

Jesse Jacobs: Up to you…

Gary Vaynerchuk: All right.

Jesse Jacobs: So the next one, this is a crazy tea and because this is your first tea tasting I feel a little bit guilty, you may not be able to appreciate it as much.

Kevin Rose: Oh I think he will actually.

Jesse Jacobs: You think he will?

Kevin Rose: Yeah, absolutely.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I drank more tea than… you know, I tried a lot more tea, what I was telling you before it’s like – it’s probably one of the disappointing… as Kevin knows I went to the tea conference with him a couple of years ago… like literally… right before…

Kevin Rose: You gambled the entire time.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s absolutely true.  And that’s to the point of it… it’s one category that I desperately wanted to get more involved in that I haven’t… before I started Wine Library TV that’s the business I was gonna go in to, I was kind of like shut it down and learn tea for 2 years.

Kevin Rose: And we’re talking about that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I mean, it’s this category of product, this is wine 1990 in America right now, it’s going to be big, it’s so obvious to me, there every trend of how we are processing our beverages and our lifestyle and how we live points to this becoming a huge category and it’s fairly unbranded, so for an entrepreneur like myself it’s very very attractive plus terroir, vintage, growing… and everything, I mean, it’s the closest… plus… you know, I was born in Russia I drink tea every night of my life from 6 to 16.

Jesse Jacobs: From a samovar.

Gary Vaynerchuk: From a samovar.

Jesse Jacobs: Very nice, good.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Old school Russian samovar and I started buying them at garage sales, they should have more.

Jesse Jacobs: They’re amazing yeah…

Gary Vaynerchuk: I can pay much more money.

Jesse Jacobs: …actually the one we have doesn’t work, we burned it out.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Really.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’ll find an old Russian one for you.

Jesse Jacobs: Those are wood fire though, you could carbon monoxide poisoning.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s crazy.

Jesse Jacobs: I know it’s crazy.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, anyway.

Jesse Jacobs: All right, so number 2, so we’re gonna go to this crazy tea here.  And this is… it’s called Inoka Hill and it’s a Gyokuro which is like a Dom Pérignon equivalent of tea – sort of the top of the top.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Don’t use Dom Pérignon because Dom Pérignon is so overrated.

Jesse Jacobs: Who do you say is top shelved?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Salon.

Jesse Jacobs: Salon…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Salon Champagne.  DomPe is like… is branding, right?  It’s like saying – you know like the top of top, the best.  It’s on top cuvée but it’s over-branded, right?  It goes by its name.  You know, use Salon.

Jesse Jacobs: Salon.  The Salon equivalent of a tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Salon.

Jesse Jacobs: And why that is…

Kevin Rose: You don’t stop (inaudible)..

Gary Vaynerchuk: Every time I say anything you think I own equity on the company.  I wish I own something in Salon.

Jesse Jacobs: So this says here the winning Gyokuro – Salon caliber tea, which has also got minister of agriculture, forestry, and fisheries price at the 29th Uji Tea competition.  So, 40 grams here and this is about $250.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Cash.

Jesse Jacobs: Cash, we don’t take credit card on this one.  This is packaged at the farm and kept in a deep freeze vacuum sealed in this little bag and opened few moments ago to breathe like a wine and it’s called Gyokuro and there are many varieties of Gyokuro.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Have you got teas like that?

Kevin Rose: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Bottomless?

Kevin Rose: I got some at home, he gave it to me for Christmas present.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s awesome.

Jesse Jacobs: We have probably 10 or 12 of these packages left and we probably had about a hundred.  The farm that this came from was a husband and wife operated farm about as big as this room, which means about 30 x 10 feet, really small, from a place in Japan called Inoka Hill.  And one of the things that makes this one special is the compost element and it’s a family-guarded recipe where they blended shiitake mushroom…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Salmon.

Jesse Jacobs: Salmon back.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Back.

Jesse Jacobs: Only…

Gary Vaynerchuk: The bone.

Jesse Jacobs: Only the spine and kombu – seaweed.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Fun facts… be careful.

Kevin Rose: You talked ahead of time.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Shss…

Jesse Jacobs: We got a little…

Kevin Rose: There’s no way you’d know that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: What are you talking about?

Do you have one of this cup?

Kevin Rose: I do not.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can I get you one for your birthday.

Kevin Rose: Sure.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You’ll be pumped?

Kevin Rose: I’ll be stoked.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Should I get it like purple and gold?

Kevin Rose: For Lakers?  Yes.

Jesse Jacobs: So first infusion, we actually used cold water.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Cold.

Jesse Jacobs: Cold water, only for this kind of tea.  A couple of the premium Japanese senchas you can do that as well.  But you really, you want to extract cold brew the flavor slowly.  And the first infusion is really unlike any other infusion which is why you let it sit for anywhere from 3 to 20 minutes.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So you’re pouring what now?

Jesse Jacobs: Now, we’re just gonna do a little rinse.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Got it.

Jesse Jacobs: Because this tea is so… subtle.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Wow.  I need one of those…

Jesse Jacobs: It’s called a tetsubin and it’s a Japanese cast iron teapot a lot like this one.  So we get this in a town in Japan and make this the old way as oppose to made in China, which is amazing, they were all handcrafted and awesome for just insulating water and then steeping tea, it comes with super insulator.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Do you have one of this Kevin?

Kevin Rose: Uh-hmm.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So, gyokuro.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, you’ll see… I don’t even want to spoil it with a flavor.

Kevin Rose: So talk to us about – a little bit about Japanese teas and how they’re different in like senchas in general and shade grown versus non-shade.

Jesse Jacobs: Totally… so Japanese green tea – so sencha means green tea and there’s a steam style green tea and there’s really the gamut from deeper steamed more intense and vegetal up to actual pulverized style powder which is like a… what they call matcha which is used in a Japanese tea ceremony they make a little foamy matcha shakes out of that.  And the caffeine is fairly consistent but for me what’s exciting is the L-Theanine component, which is a chemical component that you can get from drinking great Japanese sencha or from laying in corpse pose in yoga.  So, meditation, corpse pose, and Japanese sencha all trigger L-Theanine which is essentially a state of relaxed alertness.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So for like most people out there that are obnoxiously lazy.  Drinking the tea sounds like a much better option…

Jesse Jacobs: It’s great.  And super affordable.  You know we’re tasting this one.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Corpse pose sounds what?

Jesse Jacobs: Corpse pose, you lay down there and after a whole 2 hours of sweating.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So you don’t have to like balance on your elbow.

Jesse Jacobs: No, no, no, but as after you do all that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Got it.

Jesse Jacobs: So L-Theanine is an amazing… that a lot of studies are coming out about the benefits of that… where you’re not really jacked on caffeine like with coffee, but you’re also not sedated and just laying down in corpse pose, so you can really have this unique ability to focus but we’ll be relaxed which I think a lot of people are embracing tea for.  Especially in tech world.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, absolutely.

Jesse Jacobs: You can focus and be relaxed and get your job done.

So the first infusion is pretty ridiculous, it looks like there is no tea, and…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Smells good… ridiculously awesome.

Jesse Jacobs: Ridiculous.

So you soak it all up.

Kevin Rose: It’s good stuff.

Gary Vaynerchuk: And that would happen regardless of how much you put in there or you knew what…

Jesse Jacobs: I put in enough water for it to be concentrated.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So, it’s conceivable that somebody, you know, that is a rookie like me would put too much water in there so the balance would be really important there?

Jesse Jacobs: You’d probably want it, you would have tasted it here first, you want to know to know a little more, if you’re gonna buy this…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Sure if you’re buying 250 bones worth of tea…

Jesse Jacobs: For 40 grams.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Right, you’ll probably be asking questions.

Jesse Jacobs: Right.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Okay.

Jesse Jacobs: Exactly.

Kevin Rose: And you add more water later… this is just for the first…

Jesse Jacobs: Exactly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Kev, I think I had this before… at the place by your house at the other location, right?

Kevin Rose: I think so.

Jesse Jacobs: We may have.

Gary Vaynerchuk: We did.

Kevin Rose: No, I don’t think I opted for that, (inaudible).  I went for the cheaper one I think.

Jesse Jacobs: So this is like 65 bucks a cup if you have it to yourself.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You wouldn’t be that nice to me.

Kevin Rose: No, not for you.

Jesse Jacobs: Not too much aroma, you just want to let it roll over your tongue.

Kevin Rose: It’s great.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s so good, that’s amazing.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s ridiculous.  You get goose bumps.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, I didn’t… but I can see how one would.  The flavoring is so intense.  It’s nutty, I get a lot of nuttiness.

Kevin Rose: It’s like a sweet and sour like umami flavor, you know…

Jesse Jacobs: This is pure umami, do you have that in wine?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yup, absolutely.

Jesse Jacobs: So it’s like that sweet potato savory, MSG creates umami or this fertilizer for this tea creates umami.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Speaking of MSG.  LeBrone, I know you’re watching, I highly recommend you sign with the Knicks.  A little side thing, sorry about that.

Jesse Jacobs: Super rich it sticks in your mouth, it’s really a sticky tea, like a sweet rice almost…

Gary Vaynerchuk: So, there’s a handful, maybe a couple of dozen teas that you go cold first on, and you wanted that small…

Jesse Jacobs: Just concentrated.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Fully concentrated on that level, really, I mean that was really miniscule but the flavor was over the top.

Jesse Jacobs: Huge.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I assume by how much water is now in there, we’re gonna have a lesser version of that intensity now.

Jesse Jacobs: Exactly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But it’s hot, right?

Jesse Jacobs: Pretty warm, so the first infusion, cool the leaves so they’re not shocked by the hot water…

Gary Vaynerchuk: So, if you went hot first the thought… trash..?

Jesse Jacobs: I mean… I think nasty.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Not trashed, you just wouldn’t get the complete, you know, experience.

Kevin Rose: Probably you’ll trash it.

Jesse Jacobs: Probably really trash it.

Kevin Rose: Because you’d over steep and quickly go sour on you.  Remember the green teas are really delicate.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Kevin Rose: Where did you go, about 175 in that… in the second?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, exactly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So this will go 175 too.

Jesse Jacobs: This kind of pot – what makes it unique… this pot actually converts the tea and squeeze it into a ball like that, so you want to ring out the extraction and this pot is designed as a side handle teapot to turn the tea into this bowl, beat it against this lasercut metal strings.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can you eat the ball again?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, oh, this one you can eat.

Kevin Rose: Can we throw some money on that, can I see that happen.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I would do that.  Why can’t you… I would eat it in a heartbeat.

Jesse Jacobs: You would eat that?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’ll eat the whole bowl.

Kevin Rose: I got 20 on that.

Jesse Jacobs: I don’t know if you’ll make it to the end of the show if you eat the whole bowl.

Kevin Rose: You’re gonna be bouncing off the wall.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Be careful.

Jesse Jacobs: Too much L-Theanine.

Gary Vaynerchuk: There’s a lot of natural adrenaline here, it’ll offset it.

Yes, so the nose is incredible.

So you’re saying the scary part was if you’d eat this you’ll be like, you’ll go insane?

Jesse Jacobs: You might grow hair on your palms or something.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah?

Kevin Rose: You try one taste?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’m definitely gonna eat that.

Jesse Jacobs: It isn’t a delicacy to add this rice, not a little soysauce.

Kevin Rose: Jesse is making shit up so you’ll eat it.

Jesse Jacobs: No, no, this is true.

Kevin Rose: Put a little teriyaki sauce on top of there, you’ll be fine.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You do not eat this?

Kevin Rose: No dude!

Jesse Jacobs: Why ‘cause you think it’s too intense?

Kevin Rose: It’s too intense and I’ll use it for more steepings of tee.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Right, we don’t want to waste it yet, right?

Jesse Jacobs: I won’t brew this for as many infusions as some of the other ones.

Gary Vaynerchuk: How many more infusions can we do this?

Jesse Jacobs: It would get very astringent… it would get really astringent towards the seventh or so…

Kevin Rose: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Have you done this already at home?

Kevin Rose: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: How many times did you it, do you remember?

Kevin Rose: It kind of runs out of flavor a little bit before it gets astringent.

Jesse Jacobs: It does.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So what?  Four?

Kevin Rose: Like 4 – 5, something like that.

Jesse Jacobs: You got to make the water hotter as you go along.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, you got to shock the leaves again.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Is that what’s happening, so the heat will shock the leaves and you’ll be able to extract, so as you’re going to every… what do we call…

Jesse Jacobs: Infusion…

Gary Vaynerchuk: …infusion, you want to go hotter?

Kevin Rose: Not at all teas, but this one… if you notice the tea is dead and it’s giving you nothing and it’s not like tasting super sour, try hotter water, see if it’ll release a little bit more to the cup.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Got it.

Jesse Jacobs: And that’s the whole personal side, make the water hotter if it doesn’t have as much or make the water cooler.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I think that is the real big takeaway, interesting thing.

Kevin Rose: You have all the dials, yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You’re on control.

Jesse Jacobs: And that’s what people get intimidate by though.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Oh sure, that scares the shit out of people but at the same token when you think of that compared to any other beverage, that’s pretty bad ass.  I mean, yeah you can like change something like… you know, the purity of something like, people pumping milk and sugar into coffees… somehow people put ice cubes into red win, what the fuck?  But with this, it’s actually naturally part of what you want to do.

Jesse Jacobs: Totally.  You want to see the breadth this thing has to offer, the experience.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I want to eat this bad.

Jesse Jacobs: Try it.

Kevin Rose: Take a bite.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, no, I feel like we should do one more… no?

Jesse Jacobs: No, because we got so many to go.  Like this second infusion that you just… did you taste the second one here?

Kevin Rose: Oh my god, it’s like Big League 2.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s so good…

Jesse Jacobs: It’s a little spinachy, right?  With a little water crest, something like that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Oh my god, I think it’s amazing.

Jesse Jacobs: You’re gonna have an L-Theanine kick.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can I eat more?

Jesse Jacobs: You not gonna sleep at all tonight.

That’s probably 125 bucks right there too.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: Do you see how much it expands as well, it’s pretty wild.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So good.

Kevin Rose: It’s ridiculous.

Jesse Jacobs: I don’t want to be around him later.

Kevin Rose: I don’t neither.

Gary Vaynerchuk: My tweet is like, at the hospital, check in.

Jesse Jacobs: Too much L-Theanine.

So this is a crazy tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: By the way, help me here.  This is so delicious, I’m not joking, this is extremely good.  Are you telling me that…

Jesse Jacobs: Actually, we’ll pass it around.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Well hold on, before you pass it…

Jesse Jacobs: I’m sorry.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’m really it’s really really that good.

Jesse Jacobs: No, it’s…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Do people mix them with rice, anything else?

Jesse Jacobs: Seasoning on top, probably a little bonito and a little bit of a sesame oil and probably a little either shoyu or tamari.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I could see sesame oil.

Kevin Rose: Look at them.  They’re starting to trend like now.

Jesse Jacobs: We only have probably 6 of this left anyway.  So that’s get it while you can.

Gary Vaynerchuk: This is an incredible opportunity.  That’s like $83…

Male Participant: And worth it.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s good right?

Male Participant: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s not astringent.

Kevin Rose: No it’s not.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Good, right?

Jesse Jacobs: Spinachy, yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It is spinachy, I feel like Popeye.

Female Participant: Spinach plus tea.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.  So, antioxidants, little caffeine.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s really good… okay.

Jesse Jacobs: So, that was very special.  We’ll brew this one and get the next wine rolling.  So this is a version of that for the neophyte.  It’s one of our most popular green teas.  It is a genmai which is a toasted brown rice.  You can definitely eat that, it’s like popcorn.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Delicious.

Jesse Jacobs: Sencha, which is steamed green tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’m gonna start a new trend, we’ll just eat tea.  And just eat it.

Jesse Jacobs: We’re actually gonna do a line of tea seasonings.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Are you?

Jesse Jacobs: Tea sugars and tea salts.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I like that.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, so stay tuned for that.

So sencha and matcha… why it has all this bizarre shade to it is because of the matcha which is that powder that was poofed up which is shade grown Japanese green tea.  So very concentrated chlorophyl creates this…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Smell very grassy, right?

Jesse Jacobs: Exactly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s like New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc for all you wine heads.

Jesse Jacobs: And super rich… varied in kind of a…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Wow it got real green real fast, right?

Jesse Jacobs: Yup.  This is one of the most popular ones people love to get into green tea, you can’t brew it wrong.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Kevin, this location is near your house, right?

Kevin Rose: Yeah, it’s really close.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So do you go everyday?

Kevin Rose: I’m the mayor.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Oh you’re the mayor, nice…

Jesse Jacobs: That’s true.

Kevin Rose: If you want to brag but…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Does the mayor get to eat tea for free?

Kevin Rose: No.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I noticed you’re not like super anal about letting some of it get in there.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s just approachable.  You know it’s hard to screen it really well with this cup this is often for tasting, concentrates it so you get a good aroma, but it doesn’t strain out everything.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So grainy, right?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Smells like acacia.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, that’s the rice, so it’s toasted organic brown rice.  Be careful.

Kevin Rose: You like that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I like that, I mean, that’s what I grew up on…

Jesse Jacobs: Buckwheat everything.

Gary Vaynerchuk: In Russia you just, you brush your teeth with buckwheat.

Jesse Jacobs: (inaudible).

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, or we have vodka and buckwheat, that’s how we rolled.

Kevin Rose: And typically they don’t find this tea with matcha though.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No?

Kevin Rose: It’s normally just the brown part.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Is that something kind of special that you kind of put together as you go to work?

Jesse Jacobs: It is, exactly.  So again matcha you see it in every Japanese restaurant, you can’t brew it wrong, there’s plenty of low grade stuff out there that just gets by.  We took the highest grade we could find and added matcha to give it more caffeine and more antioxidants.

Kevin Rose: That was good.  I like that a lot.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, it’s clean right.

Kevin Rose: Super clean.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s got a limy thing, a really subtle like second flavor like a lime…

Jesse Jacobs: Citrus?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: A little.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: Uh-hmm.

Gary Vaynerchuk: A little on the back end which is interesting.

Jesse Jacobs: The astringency kicks you at the end as well.

So that one, yeah, you could do that 3 or 4 times and you see it’s really amazing combination of rice and tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can we eat that?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, totally.  Can I get one more?  One more spoon.

Gary Vaynerchuk: This smells incredible.

Jesse Jacobs: This is like a cereal.  There’s an awesome breakfast tea, scrambled eggs and butter toast and this on the side, you can’t really go wrong.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Let’s keep doing the tea thing, let’s do one more.

Jesse Jacobs: All right.  So, let’s see what we got here.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Kevin want to eat some of this?

Kevin Rose: No, I’m good, thanks.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Are you sure?

Kevin Rose: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: Actually we do have… some cookies.

Kevin Rose: I know the brown rice is good.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, try it man, I’m serious, don’t be scared.

Kevin Rose: I’ve had this before.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Just eat it.  It’s good.

Kevin Rose: It’s good.  Like roasted rice crispies kind of thing.

Gary Vaynerchuk: A little bit.  Well, it’s kind of lemony.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, it’s like a Grainier… it’s good.

Jesse Jacobs: So this one.

Kevin Rose: Try some of the freaking too, you’re only eating the rice.

Jesse Jacobs: He didn’t?

All right.  Let’s see what we got going on here.

All right.  So next off – oolong.  Oolong is known as the connoisseur’s tea and people who get in to tea just go crazy for oolong.  When you talk about complexity.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Which has happened here.

Jesse Jacobs: Oolong.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, no, but did you see what you did…

Jesse Jacobs: You rinse, so you got to open it up.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You rinse… cold or warm?

Jesse Jacobs: Hot – boiling.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Hot.  First for oolong, rinse hot rinse.

Jesse Jacobs: Two teas – oolong and pu-erh.  Those are the only 2 you rinse.


Gary Vaynerchuk: Bad ass.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, that’s good shit.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You know, from a wine standpoint, you know, it actually taste like top flight french bakery.

Jesse Jacobs: Say again…

Gary Vaynerchuk: French bakery.  It almost got like a pastry like.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That smells to me like – we just went to Paris just got there and before we start the trip you got to get like – just go to pastry shop and get some real shit – that’s what that smells like.  Exactly by the way.

What about the second row?

Jesse Jacobs: We’ll pass it around.  You’ll see why.  I mean, there’s so much complexity to a tea like this one and it goes on and on.  So this one we could brew 20 times.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Is that right?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So getting your real bang for you buck with that.

Kevin Rose: Take a look at the balls over there that kind of rolled up, you’ll see unfolding to full size leaves.

Gary Vaynerchuk: They continue to open… Really?

Kevin Rose: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: As they open…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Like a big ass leaf.

Kevin Rose: Like I’ve seen them like that before…

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: And how long would you now keep that in there.  Again, that’s probably to your control..?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But if you get too wrong – you’re gonna get astringent kind of flavor, right?  Or no?  That’s more like green?  Oolong – you’re not gonna have that?

Kevin Rose: I’ve never really killed an oolong, it’s kind of hard.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So, this could sit here for 7 minutes.

Jesse Jacobs: It might get nasty.  But you dump it out and re-brew it.  It doesn’t matter.

Kevin Rose: It’ll be a little strong, it wouldn’t be like something where you’ll be like, ‘oh this is nasty,’ you know, you’d just be like, ‘oh it’s a little too strong for me,’ or something.

Jesse Jacobs: But you re-steep it, you still… ‘all right, just do it again.’

Kevin Rose: If you mess up, I think that happen, you get a phone call or something you walk away, you come back – it’s like 10 minutes later and you’re like, ‘oh crap!’

Gary Vaynerchuk: Somebody calls on a new like inside scoop on an Apple product that you get taken away from here…

Kevin Rose: Exactly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I get it.  iPhone 5 you of details…

Kevin Rose: Google Mini… did you hear about that?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Of course.

Kevin Rose: It’s coming.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Do you think it’s gonna be serious?

Kevin Rose: If you’re ready.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I’m ready.

Jesse Jacobs: Oh my god.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I have already taken my profile picture for my Google Mini account.

Kevin Rose: Have you?

Gary Vaynerchuk: No.

Jesse Jacobs: So this name of this tea is Monkey Picked Iron Goddess of Mercy.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Of course.

Jesse Jacobs: So stellar name for awesome tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Did you come up with that name?

Jesse Jacobs: No, it’s actually tieguanyin is the other name, it’s a Taiwanese style oolong.  Taiwan is known…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can you give me the bad ass name one more time…

Jesse Jacobs: Monkey Picked Iron Goddess of Mercy.  So the compassionate Buddha with an iron fist.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Tea is gonna be huge with the comic book crowd.

Hey, do you have that dragon kills warriors on Thursdays.

Jesse Jacobs: It does… it’s… If we get to the Maiden Ecstasy.

Kevin Rose: This is good.  So, tell Gary about how Taiwan is turning into that county in Napa Valley?

Jesse Jacobs: Taiwan is turning into the Napa Valley.

Kevin Rose: There you go.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I see.

Kevin Rose: How you can take tour and stuff.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, it’s pretty amazing… so Taiwan is… tea grows in really rugged conditions, not too hot – in terms of desert like, and not too cold in terms of freezing, but everything in between.

Gary Vaynerchuk: And this is so fruity on the nose.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s woody as well though, right?  It’s a little toasty, this is a medium-roasted oolong.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You know, I get more like sugar breath, like a short bread, it almost smells like a short bready kind of nose for me on the back end.  It’s citrusy.

Is that a bird.

Jesse Jacobs: We have a bird flying through.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s our next tea – black crow comes in to random restaurants and stuns you…

Is that like a sign…

Jesse Jacobs: It’s a good omen… the iron goddess is here.  So yeah Taiwan is just a premium destination for oolong.  It’s just the high end stuff, goes for up to thousand dollars a kilo in the auctions.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Did you get orange?  I get a lot of orangy kind of…

Jesse Jacobs: Orange?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I get like an orange kind of thing.

Jesse Jacobs: Try to see what you get… we can pass the aroma around, you guys can…

So this kind of tea…

Gary Vaynerchuk: This has much… you know, in terms of like comparing tea to wine.  This has a lot more second-tier nuances that outside of that green tea – the other ones did not, like it kicks in with that initial attack on the palette, you get your flavor full cup but this is like evolving on your palette and within your taste.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s why people love it.

Kevin Rose: Do you have any sniffing cups?  Traditional Taiwan… oolong sniffing cups?

Jesse Jacobs: I think so, yeah.

Kevin Rose: That’ll be really cool if you shown him the official way to do it.

Jesse Jacobs: Oh yeah.  Caroline, could you see if we have tea aroma cups anywhere?

Caroline: Sure.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, thank you.

So complex, it takes you on a journey, as people gets speechless over this one.  And this the lowest one grade we have.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I never know speechless.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s true.  This is the cheap stuff, this one.

Gary Vaynerchuk: How much is this?

Jesse Jacobs: It’s probably 30 or 40 bucks per can.  The can is like a quarter pound, so you would probably brew 50 pots of tea with that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Fifty so…

Jesse Jacobs: Per cup?  It’s penny.  I mean it’s ridiculous.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So how much… a quarter what?

Jesse Jacobs: $45 maybe, for like quarter pound.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So a pound gets you 200.

Jesse Jacobs: No one buys a pound, it’s too much tea, it would go off by the time.  So we sell it in just the 4 ounce size, but yeah, I would say… 50 pots… but look how many times we’re gonna brew this… right?  Per cup, it’s ridiculous.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Sure… yeah, I mean, you can get the price of tea down pretty good right?

Kevin Rose: Absolutely, because you steep it like 8 – 10 times and it’s you know, pennies then.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You know what’s funny, I can’t drink water like I have this real problem with like drinking water and I want to badly, because supposedly it’s good to drink water instead of high levels of Coke – which is what I drink, and so like, I really think that I need to have like – I’m too lazy to do anything, so I think I need to hire somebody to make me tea all day and hang out with me, just keep feeding me with tea – ‘cause that would be tremendous for my life.

Jesse Jacobs: The easy thing, I just throw the leaves on a cup.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No I can’t do that.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s too much work.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Which is already too much work.

Jesse Jacobs: Well there are cultures that have tea makers you can hire someone, they do brew it perfectly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I got to tell you a story, it’s way too long and this is not the right context but I have a story for you of what some Saudi Arabian princess do now that will blow your mind.  Let me give it you real quick.  They take private jets to like the US and they have… one of them died recently like a year ago on a flight from Saudi Arabia to Miami to party – died of a heart attack.  So now the new big thing with this like 20-year-old Saudi Princess that have got like billion dollars is that they have a plain trailing them.  Like another private jet is flying right behind them that has a hospital.  But better than that – because that’s insane if you think about it in it’s own right.  They have an assistant with them as well that in case they’re dying or something  is failing – they kill the assistant and they take the heart or whatever, the limp or whatever.

Jesse Jacobs: No… organ donor.

Gary Vaynerchuk: An organ donor, live with them on the plain when they fly now.  So, as insane as having a tea…

Jesse Jacobs: That’s not true…

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s absolutely true.  They have another person, they take care of the family if they have to use them and all thing.  But like… ‘you know, here’s some money, we have to kill your son for his heart.’  I was just thinking like how ridiculous it would be to have like a tea assistant but that pales in comparison to having a body double.

Jesse Jacobs: A body donor.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Because the guy that was telling me this story is like – ‘they have body doubles,’ ‘oh, so when they come out so the paparazzi or like assassins like,’ ‘no, no, no, so they can rip the heart out if they need it.’

Jesse Jacobs: That’s pretty crazy.

Gary Vaynerchuk: They should name tea after that.

Jesse Jacobs: The organ donor tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, more like, you know, this tea is like rip heart out… you know, forget it, sorry…

Jesse Jacobs: Along the lines of Shibumi – assassin.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Isn’t that crazy Kev?

Kevin Rose: It’s nuts.

Jesse Jacobs: And here’s a random question.

Kevin Rose: Nice damn thing to bring out for the tea tasting.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Sorry… but you’re like a bowler that is… I mean, it’s sick as hell, but like, you can get to that level where like somebody flies with you, in case you get hurt, they’ll take it out of them, it’s amazing.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s pretty crazy.

Let’s see what’s next here.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You want to do one red wine?

Jesse Jacobs: All right, so what do you think, so we have another… what is this one called…

Just the chardonnays…

Go for it… dive in… cleanse the palette.

So for the other chardonnay.  It’s called Kistler 2007 from Sonoma Mountain in Sonoma.

You know them?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I know them very well.  Kistler is probably one of the single most (inaudible).wines in all of California.  In wine’s hay day 5 years ago, before the economic softening and people just started realizing, ‘oh crap, I don’t want to drop a hundred box on a bottle of wine every night,’ this wine was so allocated that you have to be on the mailing list to be able to even get the wine, and this comes from a vineyard Mccrea – one of the top top vineyards.  This is easily, or maybe along with a couple of others the single most sort after chardonnays in all of California.  Maybe Peter Michael, there’s some others that kind of roll with this, but Kistler is way way up there, usually a restaurant only and mailing list only kind of wine.  One of the biggest wine retailers in the country and we get a couple of cases a year.  So, people get emotional about it.  I – in my life have probably gotten 20 emails that said something like, ‘If you don’t get me a case of Kistler, I’m gonna punch you in your face,’ like people get emotional about this wine.  So, it’s pretty sort after stuff.

Jesse Jacobs: Cool.  They said 300 cases a year, I tried to get wines that would compare to our teas, right?  And that is…

That’s wine, yeah…

Gary Vaynerchuk: What’s about the temperature, I had this refrigerated took them out 40 minutes before hand.

Jesse Jacobs: I’m in a very funny place in the wine world with temperature, I’m like – not all by myself but I’m in a very – I’m in an interesting debate I like to drink all my white wine – all of it at room temperature, so nothing chilled because I kind of called it my ‘heightened…’

Well I wasn’t aloud to…

Kevin Rose: Sorry, keep going, keep going…

Gary Vaynerchuk: You were like pounding on…

Kevin Rose: It’s good.

Gary Vaynerchuk: We didn’t even go to like emotions…

Kevin Rose: I’m listening…

Gary Vaynerchuk: You’re like listening to all the tea thing.

Kevin Rose: I start with the nose, I start with the nose…

Gary Vaynerchuk: You pound already dick, it’s on tape.

Anyway, I call it the high school “beer rule” so you guys might remember in the crowd when you were like 16 and you have to drink like Natty Ice, or like, Meister Brow… you wanted to get it as cold as possible because it taste so bad, you didn’t want to taste it.  That happens with wine quite a bit, people get it way too cold, and so you’re not actually tasting the flavor.  So I always debate and argue that white wine should be at room temperature.  And so, obviously, you know, Safran – where it’s fuckin freezing… I got here… and it’s so cold… it’s ridiculous.  It’s like 95 in New York, but anyway here that’s fine but if it’s 95 and you’re by the pool, nobody wants to drink white wine at room temperature, everybody wants it ice cold because that’s just refreshing so I get that.  But a white wine at this caliber, and this premium price category with dinner, I think room temperature is an amazing place to go, and I debated very fiercely because you can actually taste very much like people in the tea world laugh at the way we drink tea in this country by adding things – like sugar, or milk which completely kills it, not to that same extreme but I do think chilling white wine kills your ability to really taste it.

Jesse Jacobs: So room temperature, here in San Francisco it will be 68.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, perfect, I’m thrilled.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s good.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yes.

Jesse Jacobs: All right.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Now if you smell it, you’ll notice, unlike the last one it’s not as oaky and its got more of a citrus play.

Jesse Jacobs: A light lighter.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It does come across a little bit lighter.

It’s got a little stinkiness.

Kevin Rose: I’m gonna say there’s a little musk in there.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s a little stinky, it’s kind of like, you know, if you’ve ever been to like a guy’s dorm room that plays basketball everyday and never washes his clothes.  You know, that kind of…

Jesse Jacobs: Pretty in dorm room.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, exactly.

All right, let’s give it a whirl…

And so much like the oolong that we just had, this… different from the first chardonnay, has so much going on, on it’s second flavor, as matter of fact, as I’m talking right now, the finish is kicking in a whole another creamy nutty component that wasn’t even relevant or at the surface when we first tasted it, which I think is massively fascinating, that kick of a finish that has that kind of flavor that wasn’t present, after when we start talking getting oxygen, I think is really cool.

Jesse Jacobs: You get way late astringency.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Way late… way late.  This is very much quintessential with wine.  This is the kind of thing, you know, if you want to get like a small bird like Cornish hen, like you know, fowl…

Female Participant: Black crow.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Black crow that just came in, if you would’ve shot it, we put in on grill that’s what I would pair with this wine.

No more killing the bird crow…

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: All right.

Kevin Rose: It’s nice.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You like this, or do you like the last one?

Kevin Rose: I just like that.

Jesse Jacobs: That one felt like a deep cello, this is more like a violin.  There’s a higher frequency that I get.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I know, I can understand the analogy.

Jesse Jacobs: You really think, maybe that’s the oakiness to top it up?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.  Who’s tasting this out there?  You guys like it?  Yeah, it seems like it’s going on pretty well.  It’s buttery but not like over the top, this is more the flavors are in balance, right?  You could see it just much more balance the last one we’re… last wines flavors were really at the forefront, this is looking to really blend it.  I like it.

Jesse Jacobs: All right, we’ll pair it with the next oolong.  Let’s see here.  This one, the wild one.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I just want to eat this.

Jesse Jacobs: We’re saving that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Okay, cool.  I just want to make that note.

Jesse Jacobs: We’ll save that for the end.

Gary Vaynerchuk: In case somebody was gonna jump and try to eat it.

Kevin Rose: You should have a big bite of this right here.

Jesse Jacobs: Similar type.  So this is called a Phoenix style oolong, there are many varieties of Phoenix oolong.

Gary Vaynerchuk: What does the Phoenix represent?

Jesse Jacobs: I don’t know, it’s just called Phoenix.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Is it around?

Jesse Jacobs: From the Song Dynasty era in China.  Guandong products and very premium tea of the world and the teas that… trees… teas is like a triatree… king’s tea… royalty.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So Kings… okay.

Jesse Jacobs: So where here to taste some royalty style tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: LeBrone should be drinking this.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.  Consistently, largely this is called twisted style.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So this unfold as well?

Jesse Jacobs: Totally unfolds.  And at first it’s rolled just like the other one.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Kev you kept some of those?

Kevin Rose: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: Because it’s oolong, we’ll rinse it.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Every oolong let’s rinse?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But hot.  Unlike the first Japanese green which is cold.

Jesse Jacobs: Exactly.

Kevin Rose: Everyone loves teas.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Including royalties…

Kevin Rose: Yeah, just because while I was in China the teas are sometimes stored in just like really kind of crappy conditions, the warehouses just in the middle of no where, where there’s bugs crawling in and out of there.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Right, so were just getting scared.

Kevin Rose: Or dust, I just kind of want to do rinse it off, I do it with cold water though, so I don’t wan to shock the leaves at all.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So, it’s all cold.

Kevin Rose: Yeah, exactly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So you rinse every tea you drink cold the first time.

Kevin Rose: Lukewarm, but just a rinse, like over the top, not sitting in the water, just to like get the dirt off and flying crap.

Jesse Jacobs: Don’t drink the rinse.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No…

Jesse Jacobs: I mean, you can, but they’re very flat.  All right, aroma.  Tea of royalty.

Kevin Rose: I’m not a huge Phoenix fan.

Jesse Jacobs: Really?

Kevin Rose: I don’t know what it is, it’s a little too sweet maybe.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s very sweet, it actually smells like beer, like flavored, like fruit beer.

Kevin Rose: Like raspberry beer…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.  It smells a lot like lemon… you like that?

Kevin Rose: You see, I don’t like lemon beer, so that would explain it.

Jesse Jacobs: So you don’t like the Bai Hao?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Glad we brought the super palette…

Kevin Rose: Bai Hao is okay, but I don’t like this.

Jesse Jacobs: Wow!  I find it amazing, it’s just that…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Give it to the second row.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s so sweet naturally, so you don’t have to flavor tea, right?  Good tea has a flavor that the artisan grains out, and any tea that you have to add vanilla and chocolate to is old nasty tea.  There’s no need.  So this has a natural sweetness to it that…

Pass it back for a second, we’ll hand it over.

Kevin Rose: I thought that was Steven.

Jesse Jacobs: Yes, exactly.

Kevin Rose: You tasted tea in here?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Nuh-huh.

Jesse Jacobs: No?

Kevin Rose: Lavender?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I didn’t really… you know, I’m not really eating it up, I’m taking such small portions, I’m trying to affect my palette all that much.

You’re rinsing…?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, just a little rinse.

Gary Vaynerchuk: What time is it?  We’re making so many rinse…

Male Participant: Almost 3:00.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Almost 3:00… cool.

Jesse Jacobs: You’re good?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.  We need to kind of wrap up sooner.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.  So there’s 2 more… all right… so Phoenix oolong… Guandong product.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s for coming bro…

So this is the Phoenix…

Jesse Jacobs: Phoenix, exactly.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I don’t like the Phoenix as that much.

Jesse Jacobs: So, the first infusion you can’t even think about those.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, I’m kidding.

So tea ends up being like wine for me.  This is the funny thing, I don’t know if this happens to you guys, if you’re into like beer or certain kind of food or anything else.  I really thing, there literally not a single wine I don’t like, there’s a lot of things I don’t drink often, but I think what I love so much about wine – is time and place, right?  And so like, Beaujolais… because Beaujolais Nouveau comes out of Thanksgiving.  But really good Beaujolais – the Grand Cru Beaujolais, the Fouilloux, the Moulin à Vent, they’re some of the great value wines in the world, they’re made from Gamay which is a grape that a lot of people didn’t know much about.  But it acts a little bit like pinoit noir and it’s like literally the perfect red wine with dish, right?  So there’s people like, I don’t like white wine, I like to drink red wine, but they see fish and they go ‘I can’t do that,’ and it’s a perfect perfect (inaudible). I wonder if the same thing… you know, I’m kind of already conceptualizing that for tea, right?  Kevin may not like Phoenix but maybe there’s certain time and places or rules that’s its probably better with… or maybe not, maybe because it’s on the lighter style as some tasting it, maybe because he like oolong or maybe some of the first white teas.  He might just… if he’s looking for that lighter style he rather drink something that he prefers.  And so, I don’t know, I find it interesting that I don’t… I really drink every… I’m kind of like that with food too… like I literally like everything, there’s only been 2 things in my life that I’ve eaten that I didn’t like – one was a cilantro, right?  Because I’m one of those people that – it taste like soap and the other was uni… and the funny part with uni was…

Kevin Rose: It’s the worst.

Gary Vaynerchuk: …I had bad uni the first time I had it but I didn’t know that, and so thank god I have like this tenacity to me, so I decided that I was going to make uni and cilantro my favorite foods, so I ordered them every meal for like a month.  And now uni is literally my favorite food… my favorite food is uni.  So if I’m in a good place, where like, with nice friends, but we’re definitely not in a place of love.  Like I can eat uni every meal for the rest of my life.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s a unique way.  Actually uni and gyokuro will go amazing together.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You don’t like uni?

Kevin Rose: It’s actually freaking me out.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It freaks you out.

How many of you guys don’t like uni?


How many people like uni?

How many people never had uni?  Nice… you should try it, it’s really wild.  I mean, it looks scary, people are scared shit, but it’s delicious.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, I love it.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Sea urchin, yeah…

You get scared by looking at it, it looks so crazy.  I want to eat the craziest stuff like… I just want to eat the scariest, weirdest stuff, like nothing would make me happier right now than if you like brought out like monkey eyeballs and I… I will eat them so fast.

Jesse Jacobs: Actually this tea which will get to, a buddy of mine, not monkey eyeballs but he was traveling to help find this tea.  So we try to get straight to the farmer and this tea… we’ll get to it but…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Can you be killed trying to do this?

Jesse Jacobs: He gets very sick very often, because he’s just out there, the jungle wombat is what he was eating like we…

Gary Vaynerchuk: What’s jungle wombat?

Jesse Jacobs: Anyone know?  Sort of like a large rodent that grows wild on a jungle.

What is it?  A wombat?

Male Participant: It’s a big rat.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s a big rat?

Jesse Jacobs: Like a guinea pig, yes, right.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, that sounds delicious.

Jesse Jacobs: I don’t know, he told me it was pretty nasty.

Gary Vaynerchuk: They bite hard?

Female Participant: They bite really…

Jesse Jacobs: Really?

Gary Vaynerchuk: You’ve been bitten by one?

Female Participant: No, I have seen them and they’re like don’t go near the wombats.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Kevin, have you seen any wombats when we’re up there?

Kevin Rose: I’ve seen some crazy stuff, man.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Mainly what you guys are doing…

Kevin Rose: Chinese are hardcore, I think you’re all into that now, but spend a week out there until you itch, you’d probably want to come home.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I believe that.  Actually, I want to come home now, this is freaking me out, I just want to go home…

Yeah, I like very adventurous food.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s cool in France.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You don’t Kev?

Kevin Rose: I do, yeah, absolutely.

Gary Vaynerchuk: What’s the weirdest thing you like?

Kevin Rose: I was in Japan we caught our own fish and then cut them open and then slice down on the fish itself, and then the fish is lying there looking, flapping while you’re eating it.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s amazing.

Jesse Jacobs: Wow!

Kevin Rose: So that was fun.

Gary Vaynerchuk: There’s a place in the city called Jewel Bako in New York, it’s like a sushi restaurant, sometimes he has like this shellfish that he brings out and literally – they’re moving and they cut the back and open and you eat it while it’s like playing around…

Jesse Jacobs: Dancing…

Kevin Rose: Have you had raw lobster.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Uh-hmm.

Kevin Rose: That’s really good.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.  Have you had kangaroo face… just kidding…

Female Participant: I had shark’s lips.

Jesse Jacobs: Shark’s lips!?  Wow!

Gary Vaynerchuk: Shark’s lips, see that… I really not…

Jesse Jacobs: Were they good?

Female Participant: Yes.  There’s a little texture thing, cartilagey…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Oh I love cartilagey food… serious, yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: Crunchy.

Female Participant: (inaudible).

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s cool.

Kevin Rose: Cartilagey sounds horrible… do they like hop in your mouth, and so brittle…

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, tremendous…

Kevin Rose: Okay.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You should have kangaroo face.

Jesse Jacobs: This is a ridiculous tea.  This one we just got…

Kevin Rose: Oh, I haven’t tried this yet.

Jesse Jacobs: I told you about this one.

Gary Vaynerchuk: You’ve had not this?

Kevin Rose: No.

Jesse Jacobs: This we got from a farmer in Taiwan called Hong Yue.  I don’t know if anyone knows how to pronounce it.  And the crazy thing with tea is that there’s so much misinterpretation from translation, and there’s a lot of mis-information out there.  And people will get on a pedestal and say this absolutely has more caffeine, this is more fresh, I try not even to go there because every 6 months a new study comes out, or whatever, and your argument is disproved.  So, what’s controversial about this tea is – is it a black a tea?  Or is it an oolong tea?  And the rough tea 101 to smell it.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It smells like a black tea a little bit more.

Kevin Rose: Wow, that’s a hard one.

Jesse Jacobs: Hard one, huh?

Kevin Rose: Yeah, it’s really crazy, it’s in between, it’s totally in between.  With chocolate it would be a black tea.

Jesse Jacobs: It was called a black tea, it’s from Taiwan, but Taiwan… Taiwanese are masters at oolong…

Gary Vaynerchuk: It smells like a chocolate stout beer.  You know, like that’s what it really smells like.

Kevin Rose: Are you bringing more of that in?

Jesse Jacobs: So this is a sample, I have one serving left for you, before we go.

Kevin Rose: Oh awesome dude, very nice.

Jesse Jacobs: This is a super affordable tea, I don’t know the price yet, but it wasn’t crazy, but we’re gonna lock in the whole thing and hopefully, because we the market for it, just offered either way.

Kevin Rose: It’s awesome.

Jesse Jacobs: So it looks like the…

Gary Vaynerchuk: So why… so you’re letting some air in here, but… no difference here?

Jesse Jacobs: No.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Nothing..?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.  I mean, it’s… again, approachable…

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’m just trying to get there, ‘cause if I do that in front of Kev, he would like yell, ‘the proper technique in Taiwan supposedly…’

Jesse Jacobs: Amazing color though, like really this is like caramel…

Gary Vaynerchuk: You know what this looks like if you’re a wine fan watching, you know the Gravner, the Trentino northern Italian white wines that go orange, same as that color.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So it has a subtle nose.

Jesse Jacobs: There’s nothing like it, so it looks a little bit like a twisted oolong, like the Phoenix we just tried but they call it a black tea and…

Gary Vaynerchuk: And so what a black tea would look like more…

Kevin Rose: I think it’s a black tea.

Jesse Jacobs: But you get many infusions and it continues to open up.  A black tea, you get like one good infusion.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Is that right?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, it’s a smaller leaf.  An oolong you can re-steep many times, so this is… you steep this 8 times and it will keep on getting more… or shock the leaf…

Gary Vaynerchuk: You what’s funny?  This is interesting, this has – for me a more subtle nose but a pretty intense flavor profile, which I think is interesting, you know.

Jesse Jacobs: It just has so much going on.  So we may call it black oolong…

Kevin Rose: You should put some on other cups so that people can…

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I would call it Cray Random Crow comes into… you know, let’s name after the crow… the bird that just came in… the black little bird.

Jesse Jacobs: So the direct translation is something like black robe, red ruby, black ruby robe, black oolong… I don’t know…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Black little bird that wears a robe…?

Jesse Jacobs: I don’t know, I mean that’s…

Gary Vaynerchuk: What’s wrong with that?

You like that Kev?

Kevin Rose: The name?

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, the tea.

Kevin Rose: I’m not a big fan of black tea… so, I’m not huge on it.

Jesse Jacobs: This is good.

Kevin Rose: Let’s see what it taste like after few steeps.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Are you capturing this, this is an amazing technique.

Jesse Jacobs: So never before released along with the wine tasting for sure.  Maybe not even in America.

Gary Vaynerchuk: And if you name it they’re gonna give you $40,000 cash?

Jesse Jacobs: I think that’s what we have in…

Exactly, so we’re open to good sexy names that will help us get it out there.  This would be really exciting.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Black bird wearing a robe.

Kevin Rose: Ruby robe.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Ruby robe, the logo could be bad ass… think of the bird is like… wearing a robe…

Jesse Jacobs: That’s awesome.

Male Participant: So what the amount of leaves to the water, does that ratio matter or..?

Jesse Jacobs: You know, again, personally you want to get the most flavor you can out of it, so we like to suggest people use more tea and brew it for less time.  And then re-steep the leaves so you’ll get this whole immersive experience that kind of keeps on going.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So that’s pretty interesting, huh?

Jesse Jacobs: It’s amazing, right?  It just opens up…

Gary Vaynerchuk: I don’t know if you guys saw, like how much it’s opening up already, but it’s quite a bit…

Kevin Rose: It’s a lot better than the second steep…

Jesse Jacobs: See that… no, it’s a ridiculous tea.

Kevin Rose: That’s pretty awesome.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s pretty awesome.

Kevin Rose: I think a lot of orange in there.

Jesse Jacobs: It’s citrusy, it’s like, a little port-like even…

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s actually quite a bit pork-like…

This would be a great great cigar tea.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, I can see that, after dinner.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: So that’s one thing we’re trying to get out there, really thinking about…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Not like a brunt, I mean like a cigar…

Jesse Jacobs: By getting people to think about pairing food with tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No question.

Jesse Jacobs: And that’s wide open.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I can do one more, unfortunately I gotta kinda run, so we do that.

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s good.  Did you guys like that?

Jesse Jacobs: All right, last one here.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So this is like the key tool isn’t it?

Jesse Jacobs: Yeah, a tool yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: But did you hear one of the machines that Kev has?

Jesse Jacobs: Yes.

Kevin Rose: The machines are nice… if you’re doing like a room full of people, we bring a couple of those.

Jesse Jacobs: This is more for tasting.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Are you drinking tea daily?

Kevin Rose: Absolutely yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Multiple at once?

Kevin Rose: I wouldn’t say daily… a little bit.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Just too much or…

Kevin Rose: Just you know, with everything in one cycle.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, sure… you’re drinking too much (?)?

Kevin Rose: Exactly, a (?) is good too.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I know you love it.

Did you look at those dates?

Kevin Rose: No, I will though.  I’ll do it tonight.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yes, it’s fine.

So you break it up and do this…

Jesse Jacobs: Okay, so this is called pu-erh.  The only kind of tea that you intentionally age over time.

Gary Vaynerchuk: And these have vintages.

Jesse Jacobs: Vintages.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So I bought some ’75 pu-erh because that was the year I was born.

Kevin Rose: You’re lying.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I’m serious.

Kevin Rose: In where?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I have no idea… it was expensive.

Kevin Rose: How was it?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I don’t know, I just put it in like the safe thing.

Jesse Jacobs: Breathable…

Kevin Rose: Breathable enough?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: Great.

Kevin Rose: Not near a kitchen of anything.

Gary Vaynerchuk: No, no, no.

Jesse Jacobs: Cool, dry, dark.

Gary Vaynerchuk: At the store, in our basement we have, the cheese cellar, we build up a little thing for tea and I bought that because see I was born and I figured I got a round trip.

Kevin Rose: Sweet.  We got to try that.

Gary Vaynerchuk: When you come for the next game, you’ll show me what to do with it.

Kevin Rose: Sweet.  It looks like this, huh?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Exactly, but it’s like in gold foil… like you know…

Kevin Rose: That’s awesome.

Jesse Jacobs: Have you had old stuff?

Kevin Rose: Yeah, for sure.

Gary Vaynerchuk: How old can it go?

Kevin Rose: It depends on how much you want to spend and if you get the sources.

Jesse Jacobs: We have a 1938.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Kevin Rose: You don’t know if you can trust the source like anything… that’s like, let me hand it down and…

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah, I understand.

Kevin Rose: There are some pu-erh teas that have like holograms on them now.

Jesse Jacobs: Really, I haven’t heard about that.

Kevin Rose: Some of the bamboo stocks that has no hole and they grow around it.

Jesse Jacobs: Oh my gosh, authenticate…

Kevin Rose: So people won’t copy that.

Jesse Jacobs: Wow.  So yeah, pu-erhs the only tea that intentionally age, otherwise you want fresh tea.  And this one is actually aged inside wild baby Mandarin orange.  So that’s the deal here.  You can it but I wouldn’t personally.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Oh yeah.

Kevin Rose: You’re so going to the hospital mate.

Gary Vaynerchuk: This so smells like the earth, you know.

Jesse Jacobs: Total barnyard kind of…

Gary Vaynerchuk: (inaudible) you know…

Jesse Jacobs: So we’ll pair a red wine.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Do you drink a lot of pu-erh?

Kevin Rose: I do, yeah, I like it a lot, it’s really good, that’s the tea that I was researching when I came to China.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Right, so this is considered the highest standard in some way?

Jesse Jacobs: Pu-erh, I don’t buy the crazy expensive stuff, it’s not necessarily better tasting, we want to get it out there, make it approachable…

Gary Vaynerchuk: That smells like you got your ass kicked in the forest and they smoosh your face in the ground, just smells like that on the top soil, like there’s insects on the ground, right?

Kevin Rose: Isn’t it good?  I mean, this smells just like China.

Jesse Jacobs: And you actually blend the skin in with it, you’re actually drinking the skin.

Kevin Rose: Totally from the jungle.

Gary Vaynerchuk: It really does probably, that’s awesome.

Jesse Jacobs: Se here’s a random question for you Gary.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Yeah.

Jesse Jacobs: So you’re the guy in the social media world, published your book and all that stuff, you’re ridiculously all over the place, speaking and stuff.  What’s the one question you haven’t been asked, that you’d like to be asked?  Your deal, your thing.  Business, whatever.

Kevin Rose: How you got your six pack abs?

Gary Vaynerchuk: Um… I don’t know, I feel like, there’s nothing that really pops in my head that… I always want people to ask me questions that make me look awesome, you know, those are always fun.

Jesse Jacobs: Okay, next question might be…

Gary Vaynerchuk: But you know, I don’t know, I think they’re like, some you know, I’m very on this kick, my entire kick right now is – I don’t think we’d really wrap our head around how early all this stuff is, like even think about what we’re dong right now, like there’s people watching this, like to replicate this a decade ago, would have cost something quadrillion dollars right?  Like there would be like vans out there like satellites, the size of like this whole restaurant.  By big thing is the youth of the whole movement, so I like when people ask questions that allow me to like steer the conversation that way.  I feel like people totally underestimated what’s going in the space and how young this all is, I mean, it’s literally 15 years old, like the modern web is like – it’s a baby.

Jesse Jacobs: Live steaming right now.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I mean, 6 years ago, there wasn’t Facebook or Youtube, 6 or 6-1/2 whatever, I mean that’s absurd, or Twitter… you know… so I mean like, it’s just… I just wish people understood how early it was, that’s like my big big thing right now.  I think people are very naïve to where all of these all goes, how early it is, and how obnoxious opportunities always going to be and there is right now.

Jesse Jacobs: So if they knew, what would you think they would or should do differently?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I think every single person watching this and sitting here, should think about mobile 24/7 365 I’m very bullish on that.  We’re amazingly lazy and mobile falls directly into that strike of like… I don’t even want to open my laptop here, like I much rather just pull something out of my pocket… I just think, you know, I always think about mobile, and I like mobile, it’s like, by far, you know – I thinking a lot about all my properties, all my businesses, and everything is to, you know, for developing really some interesting aps and I just think mobile is very interesting.  You know, tea – wine, super intimidating, there’s a lot you heard today.  We’ll all gonna go out there live our lives like – from 3 weeks we had tasting, what the hell what?  Like sea urchin, what?  I don’t remember anything, like the ability to pull out a phone and get the information you need.

Bless you…

And fight it…

You got it…

You’re gonna come with the second one, I saw, but you blocked it.

You know like Kev, I asked them that free agent question of the Lakers, the fact that he could have gotten that answer in 2 seconds on his phone, that’s so different than 5 years ago.

Jesse Jacobs: So someone that is doing it and starting it, what do you think, few words of wisdom for someone who wants to get out there to create a blog, get it, just jumpstart few things that they would…

Gary Vaynerchuk: I think the only thing you can… scratch your own itch, I think that is by far the best way to build a good business.  No what you want… Kev you kind of did that with Digg, right?  You were curious of what was being submitted, right?  Is that true, am I wrong in that?

Kevin Rose: You’re right.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I mean, I think that’s like, you may have like one of the great case studies of that, like, I believe in that so much, like there’s a lot of things I’m thinking about right now that is scratching my own itch and like… I mean, that’s how Digg was done, he was curious what…(inaudible)?  You were curious what people were submitting…

Kevin Rose: Yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: So he made something that… scratch that… I mean, I think that is super powerful – because you know it.

Kevin Rose: The biggest problem I see… that most people don’t… they want to get confirmation and they always ask you like, shall I do this, shall I build this, you just got to go build it.  When I showed the prototype of Digg to my roommates at the time, they didn’t even like it.  They’re like – hey everyone gonna do, you know?

Gary Vaynerchuk: It’s maybe because they don’t like you.

Kevin Rose: It could be.

Jesse Jacobs: Personally.

Kevin Rose: You loved it though, you are game in the system.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Please… when I got into the internet, like the only thing I want to accomplish in my entire whole like was to be on front page of Digg.

Jesse Jacobs: That’s nice.

Kevin Rose: It’s pretty funny actually that’s a true story.

Gary Vaynerchuk: That’s a very true story, like when I first started…

Jesse Jacobs: And when was it?

Gary Vaynerchuk: So in November… in like August… let me get it… in May of 2005 is when I started getting serious about the web, I was doing, we are doing ecommerce, but in the summer of ’05 – spring of ’05… in a one week period, my developers showed me 2 different things that changed my whole life, I saw a (inaudible) show, right, because they were all obsessed with it.  I was like, ‘fuck this guy, I can do that,’ right.  And number 2 was (inaudible)… with dotcom and I was like, ‘oh man, that’s like such a site that I wish I built,’ like understand that, one deal cool, like a such (inaudible) kind of retail thing that I could have done.  So those 2 sites made me realized the web was changing and so that was it, I just started reading and try to put out like, ‘oh this Digg thing is serious,’ anything in the front of Digg it gets some 50,000 people come to your site.  So that’s the only thing I want to accomplish in my life was to be on the front page of Digg, it was like one time.”  And he was like, “Cool man,” I was like, yeah.  That was our first time actually.

Jesse Jacobs: And you did it?

Gary Vaynerchuk: I did with the weather episode.

Kevin Rose: He is sitting outside tasting wine…

Gary Vaynerchuk: In the weather and the snow…

Kevin Rose: …snow, yeah.

Gary Vaynerchuk: And then the first time I ever met Kevin, he was speaking at FOWA the first tech conference I ever went to – I went to London, I don’t know why, because I just decided I had to go to a tech conference and the first one that I can find was in London, I was fucking love of London.  Kev spoke, and so, you know, afterwards obviously everybody kind of to like yap at him… and I rolled up and was like, “Hey dude, I was on the frontpage of Digg.”  Like one time, and he was like, “cool man,’ and I was like, ‘yeah.’  That was our first time, right?

Kevin Rose: And you were like, “I got some wine, you want to taste some wine?”  I was like, “Cool, bring me some wine.”

Gary Vaynerchuk: Kev is like, free stuff, I’ll take it off.

Kevin Rose: That’s awesome.

Jesse Jacobs: What do you think, anything else, top 3 things, someone who wants to get up there.

Kevin Rose: I mean, like I said, that people are always asking for approval and they just need to go build it, it’s so cheap now with S3 and Easy 2… you can get… up and running for under a couple of thousand bucks and any new kind of like what project do you want to launch.  So, yeah, it really is just get out there try them.

Jesse Jacobs: All right.

Gary Vaynerchuk: And you know what’s crazy, you can build on the ecosystem of sites that are out there, the fact that you can build it an app within an ecosystem like a Facebook, I mean, it’s so much easier now to gain traction and build some form of base.  The plumbing of virility is now in place in some way, whereas before you’ll be putting it somewhere in the web and you have to spend money or be… when I started Wine Library TV and I wanted to get traction… you know, Twitter didn’t exist, and Facebook was still college and I don’t want to be like the creepy old guy pedaling wine to the kids.  So I went to like, one by one, going to wine forums and wine blogs and becoming part of the community, that was like the only option.  Now the fact that you can really go and start a fanpage or an app or build on the ecosystem or build an app inside the iTunes ecosystem, I mean, the cost of entry for audience today is so much lower.  Now, you got to be able to get through all the noise and you have to have… but content is always carrying… if you put out something worthwhile it will find its way.  Especially if you go out and you become part of the community a little bit.  I mean, that’s the piece that I did very well, I think, and that’s the piece that I think people are still missing.  I still think somebody who makes a very good iPhone app can be lost, because there’s just a ton of shit going on.  But I feel like that same team with one of two people dedicated to finding the audience and being part of the community… that is has a shine… I think, once again, I think what’s Kev did really well.  His site not only was important but he was out there, he was interacting and Diggnation was a platform for more exposure to it and I think that people are just not caring enough of it.  I think, people need to really think about their audience, I don’t care if it’s B to C, if it’s content, I don’t care if it’s an app, I don’t are if its B to B, I don’t think people give enough to real relationships and I think that is the core of hwat you can really build off because people have gotten… especially when Twitter came out, people got way to numbers oriented, it was like all the ‘how many.’

Jesse Jacobs: Genuine versus quantity.

Gary Vaynerchuk: I mean if you have 68 people that really really give a crap, you can make a lot of damage out there.

Jesse Jacobs: So, just do it.  Scratch your own itch.  Anything else?

Kevin Rose: Drink more tea.

Jesse Jacobs: Drink tea, all right.  That’s awesome.  Cool… all right.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Awesome.  Thanks for having us.

Jesse Jacobs: Thank you guys very much.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Thanks guys for coming out.

Jesse Jacobs: Will be doing more live food and tea, chocolate and tea, all different things, people have ideas, feel free.

Kevin Rose: Sake.

Jesse Jacobs: We’ll be doing sake and tea.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Nice.

Jesse Jacobs: And chocolate and tea tasting coming up and you can find out more at

Kevin Rose: Sweet.

Jesse Jacobs: Thank you.

Gary Vaynerchuk: Awesome.

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