Monday, June 9, 2008

Japan Genmaicha

Tea: Japan Genmaicha
Vendor: Tea Gschwendner
Price: $4.84 / 50g.
Source: Japan
Vendor Description: A very popular Green tea blend in Japan, made by mixing roasted whole grain rice with fresh Sencha. Milder, and less strong in the cup than pure Sencha, it has a pleasant aroma of toasted rice.

Leaf: The leaf for this tea was about what I would expect from a genmaicha. The leaf was matte in color with color variations throughout the leaf. There was the characteristic aroma of the puffed rice from the mix. The leaf was somewhat unimpressive in its size and shape from rolling. The leaf was more twisted and contorted than regular for sencha, and was not rolled into the fine needles like some senchas are.

1st Infusion: There was a normal light green color and the infusion was fairly transapernt. It had a very characteristic fresh crisp aroma from the puffed rice. It had a very clean fresh tang to it. The flavor was very smooth and sweet, there was no astringency or bitterness. The flavor was very crisp on the front of the tongue, and produced a very good and distinct genmai flavor.

2nd Infusion: This infusion produced a more yellow colored infusion. The flavor was more muddled and not nearly as crisp. The front of the tongue flavor was definitely duller. It had a very rich and full flavor this time, with a very full bodied flavor spreading throughout the mouth smoothly. There was no bitterness and a light sense of astringency.

Rating: 8/10

Conclusion: It was a bit disappointing how much the clean and crisp flavor of the first infusion disappeared with the second. The leaf had a bit of a disappointing appearance to it as well. It is to some degree to be expected of a genmaicha, but not necessarily the way it would have to be. As a genmaicha though, this was a very good contender.

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