Why Japanese teas?


Made from leaves that have not been oxidized.

Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby tst » Sep 22nd, '11, 23:56

AdamMY wrote:
a.serrao wrote:Wow, this strongly negates the "shincha theory".


What Shincha theory?

Most people think Shincha is special because it is ultra fresh like their Chinese Counterparts. But Japanese Shincha is in part a celebration of the new harvests, and it tastes differently due to it being processed differently than sencha versions of the same tea. Most of the Japanese tea industry is amazing at keeping the tea as fresh as possible throughout the entire process. So much so that a tea packaged and sold in November or December is still very very fresh.


So what you guys are saying is that if I were to buy some Yutaka Midori from O-Cha right now, the freshness will be a relative non-factor when considering the tea's quality?
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Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby Chip » Sep 23rd, '11, 00:00

tst wrote:
AdamMY wrote:
a.serrao wrote:Wow, this strongly negates the "shincha theory".


What Shincha theory?

Most people think Shincha is special because it is ultra fresh like their Chinese Counterparts. But Japanese Shincha is in part a celebration of the new harvests, and it tastes differently due to it being processed differently than sencha versions of the same tea. Most of the Japanese tea industry is amazing at keeping the tea as fresh as possible throughout the entire process. So much so that a tea packaged and sold in November or December is still very very fresh.


So what you guys are saying is that if I were to buy some Yutaka Midori from O-Cha right now, the freshness will be a relative non-factor when considering the tea's quality?

O-Cha restocks throughout the year and specializes in offering fresh teas year round. You can buy now with confidence.
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Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby tst » Sep 23rd, '11, 00:10

Chip wrote:
tst wrote:
AdamMY wrote:
a.serrao wrote:Wow, this strongly negates the "shincha theory".


What Shincha theory?

Most people think Shincha is special because it is ultra fresh like their Chinese Counterparts. But Japanese Shincha is in part a celebration of the new harvests, and it tastes differently due to it being processed differently than sencha versions of the same tea. Most of the Japanese tea industry is amazing at keeping the tea as fresh as possible throughout the entire process. So much so that a tea packaged and sold in November or December is still very very fresh.


So what you guys are saying is that if I were to buy some Yutaka Midori from O-Cha right now, the freshness will be a relative non-factor when considering the tea's quality?

O-Cha restocks throughout the year and specializes in offering fresh teas year round. You can buy now with confidence.


Wow, that's awesome and great to know. Thanks Chip!
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Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby blairswhitaker » Dec 8th, '11, 16:36

I'm a bit late entering this one. I love both, but what it comes down too it that I actually drink more chinese tea than japanese even though I like japanese more. For my part it is a supply issue, I can find a lot more chinese tea locally ( I am only speaking of greens and nothing else here) than I can japanese. I order most my Japanese tea from Yuuki-Cha with the exceptions being some sencha and matcha I get from local shops.

My favorite tea hands down is gyokuro.

an example of my chinese tea use would be this week I have drank Ming an ji bai cha, Gu zhu zi sun, silver needle green, and a rishi jade cloud. All chinese greens compared to the three servings of matcha genmaicha from japan. I really am not a fan of houjicha, though I love pretty much all other japanese offerings I would drink a wider variety of kabusecha, Kamairicha, bancha, gyokuro, sencha, and matcha if I could walk down the street and obtain them the way I can the chinese greens.


On another note there is a certain element of romance and dedication that goes into japanese tea. I love sencha-do and cha-no-yu and practice both. I find their is no equivalent ceremony for chinese green and drink a lot of it "old man" style this is quick and efficient for me but it is not like gong fu ( I do not consider gong-fu a green tea process.) Japanese tea is more "sacred" to me, where as a lot of time chinese greens is just to get my "fix" even though I really enjoy and appreciate the nuance.
Last edited by blairswhitaker on Dec 9th, '11, 03:01, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby Tead Off » Dec 8th, '11, 23:26

tst wrote:
AdamMY wrote:
a.serrao wrote:Wow, this strongly negates the "shincha theory".


What Shincha theory?

Most people think Shincha is special because it is ultra fresh like their Chinese Counterparts. But Japanese Shincha is in part a celebration of the new harvests, and it tastes differently due to it being processed differently than sencha versions of the same tea. Most of the Japanese tea industry is amazing at keeping the tea as fresh as possible throughout the entire process. So much so that a tea packaged and sold in November or December is still very very fresh.


So what you guys are saying is that if I were to buy some Yutaka Midori from O-Cha right now, the freshness will be a relative non-factor when considering the tea's quality?

Storage methods might be very good and keep a tea from losing a lot of its flavor and aroma but it is NOT the same as drinking the tea when it is fresh from the farm after its processing. All the more so for first picked, delicate tea leaves which are even more vulnerable than later harvests to the effects of time. Because we have no way to measure the actual change of a tea from its first picking and tasting in the spring and a subsequent batch of the same tea drunk in late fall/winter, except for our memory of its taste, and memory of sensual stimuli cannot be accurate. I'm not saying a tea goes bad by Xmas, but, it does change.
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Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby Chip » Dec 8th, '11, 23:48

... last years harvest of Yutaka Midori from O-Cha. As much as I enjoyed the shincha, I found it actually improved with age ... as I opened a bag around this time of the year last year.

I find what is more critical for Japanese greens is the time elapsed since opening the bag. YM even scored well in this regard.

Of course, each year's harvest brings new variables and past performance does not guarantee future results ... but it is generally hard to go wrong with YM from this vendor.
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Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby Tead Off » Dec 9th, '11, 01:49

I've also experienced a sencha getting better with age. Isn't this why they usually say gyokuro is better with some months of aging? I'm not making any quality judgements, just saying that there is a difference between fresh harvested and stored teas.
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Re: Why Japanese teas?

Postby Chip » Dec 9th, '11, 02:04

Tead Off wrote:I've also experienced a sencha getting better with age. Isn't this why they usually say gyokuro is better with some months of aging? I'm not making any quality judgements, just saying that there is a difference between fresh harvested and stored teas.

Of course ... my only point being that even though I preach freshness over and over again ... it is not always as simple as that. As much as I think I know, over time I find that I understand less and less. :lol:
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