Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Daily Sencha

Tea: Shizuoka Green Tea Daily Sencha
Vendor: O-cha
Price: $ 10.95 / 100g
Source: Shizuoka, Japan
Vendor Description:Daily Sencha - This 2007 second harvest green tea is an above average quality sencha, far and away better than what you will find in your local grocery or health food store. If you are new to green tea, this would be a good starter tea. Fresh from Japan.
Additional Vendor Information:
Shipping Weight 110.00 grams
Growing Region > 50% Shizuoka
Grown Under Full Sun
Color Yellow-Green
Aroma Mild
Taste Medium
Astringency Medium
Consistency Clear
Grams per Pkg 100
# of first infusions per Pkg 22
Organic No

This was another o-cha tea that I got to try thanks to Chip over at Teachat. After having tried the Yutaka Midori, I wasn't expecting too much from this particular tea. The dry leaf was a bit less impressive, considering the presence of more particles in the tea, although that's not surprising or unexpected. There was a bit more variation in the tea leaf size varying from the dust to a few long leaves. Again, this was not unusual or unexpected.

The liquor had a very unusual color to it, it was murky with a high opacity although the color was a very light shade of green. Normally when I had seen this level of opacity the liquor itself was a very dark green color. But to see a light green such as this with this opacity was surprising.

The first infusion was rather surprising, the initial taste had a very sweet start. The first sip reminded me of the latter half of the taste of the Lupicia Ariake Yutakamidori. It was a sweetness that wasn't a sugary sweetness, nor the gyokuro sweetness, this was very much like the yutakamidori in that it reminded me of sweet potato. Behind this sweetness there was a trademark sencha bitterness tailing into the equally trademarked astringency. Both the bitterness and astringency were a roughly medium level.

The second infusion bestowed a deeper green color to the tea, with the same opacity as before. Interestingly this was less astringent than the first infusion, although the tea in general felt a bit weaker. If I had more of this tea I would have liked to play around with brewing variables more as I have a feeling that there is much to be unlocked with this tea.

Rating: 10/10

Conclusion: This is a very good tea. At the price it is an even better tea, it is right around what I would consider a good price for a daily tea, and it has no true faults to it. I enjoy the sweetness in the first part of the flavor profile, and find it even better when it is not replacing the bitterness or the astringency. It retains its fresh flavor and balances it all well.

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