Friday, March 6, 2009

Gyokuro Fujitsubo

Tea: Gyokuro Fujitsubo
Vendor: O-Cha
Price: $45.95 / 100g
Source: Uji, Japan
Vendor Descripton: Uji Gyokuro "Fujitsubo" - is honored to offer gyokuro "Fujitsubo", supplied to us from the Tsuen family who operate Japan's oldest teashop located on the banks of the Uji river. A very high quality, authentic first-flush gyokuro, this tea is a proprietary blend of "Saemidori" and "Yabukita" breeds of green tea, with the "Saemidori" being prominent. Gyokuro is shade grown before harvesting, giving it a greener color and sweeter taste. Once you learn to make it properly, you wil be hooked for life! Make sure to read our brewing instructions, as it is brewed differently than sencha.

Leaf: The leaf for this tea is a very deep shade of green. There are lots of small particles to this tea, but it has a rich gyokuro aroma. There is a little bit of stem in there, but not much.

1st Infusion Parameters: 5g, 5oz, 130F, 45s

1st Infusion: This tea has a light pale green color. It is very clear, and has a thick and rich aroma. The flavor is very strong, but the flavor is mostly on the front side. The flavor is rich and grassy, with a very smooth flavor. There is no astringency to it.

2nd Infusion Parameters: 140F, 15s

2nd Infusion: This infusion was murkier in color. It was a darker yellow hue, and lacked the radiance of the first infusion. The aroma was bolder and had a sense of grassiness to it. The flavor of this tea was quite envigorating. The feeling spread throughout the mouth and had a strong boldness to it. There was a light sencha like bitterness to the flavor, it was quite thick again and felt quite energizing.

3rd Infusion Parameters: 150F, 45s

3rd Infusion: There was a little bit of residue in this cup, but the color was a clear bright green hue. It was again bold with a very normal gyokuro flavor. It was grassy this time around, and lighter and cleaner than before. The flavor was clean and open.

4th Infusion Parameters: 155F, 2:00

4th Infusion: There was not much aroma to this infusion. The flavor was rich and strong early on, but there was not much fo a middle or late flavor. The flavor felt slightly light and empty. It was pretty apparent that the tea was starting to let up.

Rating: 9/10

Conclusion: This tea is quite wonderful. The flavor had different profiles in each infusion, it is a bit surprising to see it change this much. Normally it's changes within the normal part of the profile, but this had grassiness come and go in different infusions. After the 4th infusion it felt like it could probably go on further, but it would take a fair amount of time/temp to coerce it out of it. It seems like quite a pricey tea, but not that extreme for gyokuro.

1 comment:

Salsero said...

Nice photo today of the tea broth! Very unusual color.

Your description sounds less enthusiastic than your very high rating for this tea. Is it correct to say that you found this Fujitsubo cleaner and fresher tasting than some other gyokuro, which might have heavier, creamier textures?

I am still trying to learn to discriminate among different gyo. I think this review may have helped me out a bit at forming some general categories to place my gyokuro experiences into.