Tea sourcing batch n.239 - Teas from Japan - Sencha from Kagoshima prefecture

We always source teas very carefully! No matter what kind of tea it is or for who it is.
With our ruthless eyes, sinister noses and intense taste buds we take our job seriously. We take NO excuses, No political sides, No influence from previously excellent plantations or batches, No influence from famous legends, famous locations or even price in consideration. Our minds are clear as the sky (not Scottish!) and our tasting sheets are empty..... awaiting the verdicts.
We briefly scan the dried leaves first and smell the fragrance, yet we know not to conclude all our hopes, wishes and scores at this point as appearance is not all that important (it is but even ugly tea can taste fantastic! :). Then we inspect the infused leaves, smell the aroma and look at their structure – in this step you can actually see lots as the leaves unfold showing off the whole growing and manufacturing story. In the last and most crucial point we spend a long time on tasting the liquor: it's aroma, colour, texture, body, taste, after-taste and astringency - firstly when the liquor is hot and then when it cools down.
And WE LOVE IT!
Batch 239 is very special to us as it has been delivered directly from Japan by a wonderful and highly respected friend Mr. Hidetaka Hayashi “President and founder of Hayashi Coffee institute”. He is an absolute speciality coffee master and also speciality tea star!
We would like to thank him from the bottom of our hearts for this beautiful tea bundle he sent!
1) Sencha by ITO-EN from Schizuoka Prefecture
2) Sencha by ITO-EN from Kagoshima Prefecture
3) Gyokuro ”Yame” from Fukuoka Prefecture
4) Kabusecha Gounpou (Gyokuro) Uji, Kyoto Prefecture
2) Sencha Kagoshima pref.: Magnificent! Vegetal and Nutty.
Sencha is a spring tea, plucked early in May which has 2 major styles of production:
- Asamushi: short dehydration period which produces a light tea with a delicate vegetal freshness.
-Fukamushi: longer dehydration period which brings out the strength of tannins and gives the tea a more iodized flavours.
Dried Leaf: The dry leaves are mixture of longer deep green needles and broken pieces. The fragrance is like a sweet warm hay, osmantus and hazelnut with a hint of thyme mintiness.
Infused Leaf: Infusion creates vivid green and dense paste with an aroma of fresh asparagus and violets.
Liquor: Cup is slightly cloudy, vivid yellow-green in colour. The mouth-feel is rich and creamy, fresh and delicate with generous notes of asparagus and honeysuckle. The body is well balanced and fills the mouth with taste of fresh walnuts, spinach & coriander. The after-taste carries mellow umami sweetness with persistent herbal finish.