Monday, March 17, 2008

Yutaka Midori

Tea: Kagoshima Sencha Yutaka Midori
Vendor: O-cha
Price: $24.95 / 100g
Source: Kagoshima, Japan
Vendor Description: From the first 2007 harvest, a very special sencha from Kagoshima prefecture located at the southern tip of Japan. An exceptionally "green" green tea, we are pleased to be able to offer a green tea of quality to our customers. We urge you to compare this sencha against any of the others available on the internet for that nice emerald green color and wonderful taste. Try some today!

Extra Vendor Information:
Shipping Weight 110.00 grams
Growing Region > 50% Kagoshima
Grown Under Full Sun
Color Deep Green
Aroma Mild
Taste Grassy
Astringency Medium
Consistency Clear
Grams per Pkg 100
# of first infusions per Pkg 22
Organic No

This is a tea that I got to try thanks to Chip from tea chat. I had been hearing people rant and rave about o-cha's tea for some time now, but had yet to try some out. I had heard that the quality was top notch, but the package size, price, and shipping price had deterred me somewhat. I was planning on ordering some when the shincha flush came out, but the opportunity to try it out presented itself first.

The leaf looked just as I imagined it would, a nice dark green color, without too many tiny particles, and a nice even leaf size.

The first infusion had a very light and delicate aroma to it. It was surprisingly refreshing considering many senchas do not have a very strong aroma to them, and the light aromas are normally such that you're struggling to find it rather than appreciate it. This one was just light and very refreshing. The flavor was very light and sweet on the onset, but led up to a very clean bitterness. The bitterness was actually quite perfect, it had just the right amount of tang to the flavor, and left the mouth with a clean feeling. The clean feeling was paired with a medium sense of astringency and a slight grassy aftertaste. There was a rather medium sense of body to the tea which was washed away by the bitterness.

I tried a second infusion which had a higher sense of astringency, but aside from that tasted much the same. Successive infusions had the same result, simply a very similar taste and an increase in the astringency.

Rating: 8/10

Conclusion: While I was not terribly impressed by this tea, it performed exactly as described, and is a very good representation of a good sencha. It is a solid performer which hits its key points with precision. The astringency is a bit high for my personal taste, but if you like an astringent sencha this is a good bet. I would however have liked to see something a bit more impressive considering the price.


Salsero said...

Nice photo, nice description of the tasting experience.

Thanks for sharing.

Brent said...

I'm surprised you got so much astringency, as I found it to be quite mellow, at least the way I brewed it. What parameters did you use? Times, amount of leaf, temperature, etc.

Eric said...

I didn't measure/time everything exactly, but approx values are:
4g leaf
150 ml water @ 170F
60s 1st infusion
90s 2nd infusion

Brent said...

Interesting, that's about the same as my parameters. I'm always amazed at how different two people's impressions of a tea can be (this is definitely not the first time something like this has happened)!

Also, sorry I forgot to say this earlier, but thanks for the review!