Saturday, January 3, 2009


Tea: Aracha

About This Tea: This tea was a sample of aracha provided to me by another fellow tea drinker. Aracha is a normally temporary form of Japanese green tea. After harvesting and initial processing tea is stored in cold storage as aracha. Aracha is stored in cold storage until it is needed and then removed, refired, and sorted. Because it is unsorted aracha contains all of the assorted grades and forms of Japanese green tea found. This includes mecha, kukicha, and sencha.

Leaf: In this tea there is everything from small powdery bits to long thin needles. This tea has a very dark green color and the leaf has a nice shiny polished appearance to it. There is a noticeable mix of stems and small particles included.

1st Infusion Parameters: 5g, 5oz, 1min, 180F

1st Infusion: This tea had a yellow green color with a light murkiness to it. The aroma was very mixed with a light and sweet aroma to it. There was a very unusual flavor to this tea, it is apparent that there are multiple forms of tea. The flavor is a long lived flavor. The front end of the tea has a light bitterness to it, followed by a very noticeable woody flavor similar to a kukicha. It also has a very thick midsection and no astringency on the end.

2nd Infusion Parameters: 180F, 45s

2nd Infusion: This infusion had a light brown hue to it. The infusion was somewhat murky. This infusion had a very different flavor profile to it. There was a bitterness in the middle and a light lingering flavor on the back end. There was a light sense of astringency at the end.

Rating: 3/10

Conclusion: There is a very good reason why tea is sorted, the flavor of aracha is very muddled and complicated. In the different infusions flavor characteristics of different teas were present. If the different components of aracha were singers, drinking pure aracha would be akin to a choir each trying to sing their solo at the same time. Individually fantastic, but unsorted it is confused and muddled.

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