2012 Official Shincha Review Topic


Made from leaves that have not been oxidized.

2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby Chip » May 17th, '12, 19:12

The topic says it all. Each year, we have an order topic and a review topic.

"New" Yutaka Midori from O-Cha to kick things off. Leaf after 5 steepings is still beautiful green.
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2nd steep ... actually greener than this photo.
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Really incredible in the cup, nice aromatics and wonderful taste of pure YM leaf.
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OHHH, do not forget the smell the dry leaves warming in your preheated kyusu for the "must sit down moment!"
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby bambooforest » May 17th, '12, 21:10

Shincha Kunpu from Denstea.com

Vegetal, slight fruit undertone, full, satisfying flavor. Currently on third steep and it's surprisingly good for a third steep.

I consider this a very, very balanced tea for some reason. It almost tastes like it was concocted in a factory, which isn't a bad thing. The balance is a virtue and a testimony of the skill of those who produced this tea.

I went 4 grams for 5 ounces... 1st steep 1.5 minutes at around 165 to 170F (I'm guessing)... I often prefer hot water for asamushi. 2nd steep 30 seconds at around 180F. 3rd steep a full minute at around 180F
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby Buzz fledderjoh... » May 18th, '12, 15:20

Chip wrote:Image


Smell-o-vision replaces television?!
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby blairswhitaker » May 19th, '12, 20:19

O-cha
Kaoru, Kagoshima Yutaka Midori

4 grams of dry leaf, 4 oz of water
Water heated in a tetsubin (crystal geyser) tea prepared in tokoname kyusu.

appearance: leaf is finely broken with some slender longer pieces, Dark green with bits of lighter green through out.

Smell of dry leaf: strong vegetal, briny - almost meaty like a beef and vegetable stock.


steep #1: 45sec at 70c
aroma: sweet and brothy/umami.
appearance: a cloudy vivid green.
flavor: green and fresh, savory/umami. strong and upfront with a deep finish, steamed asparagus.

steep #2 70c at slow pour
aroma: similar to 1st
appearance: much darker green, opaque vivid...
flavor: More on the sweet side still umami but dominant note is a fukamushi sweetness. slightly more grassy in the finish. bold and smooth in the middle notes. finish is slightly cloying

steep #3 70c at 45sec
smell: same
appearance: slightly clearer
flavor: mostly sweet with a slight nutty taste in the middle, the sweetness is fine in the attack but cloys in the finish. coats the back of the throat in a syrupy way. some may enjoy this but I do not care for it.

all profiles diminished past this point.

This tea is very good to me but does not reach greatness. It actually tastes better to me the second day after having been opened, I also enjoyed it more brewed in a larger batch with some hotter water. around 75c. with organic and pesticide free fukamushi yutak midori available I will not be re-ordering this selection.
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby Chip » May 19th, '12, 22:31

blairswhitaker wrote:O-cha
Kaoru, Kagoshima Yutaka Midori
I will not be re-ordering this selection.


... more for us then. :twisted:

Having had numerous YM selections over the years, IMHO, O-Cha consistently delivers the best each year. In fact, I conducted yet another side by side tasting of another shincha YM a couple weeks ago (which remains anon for now).

I have had the organic YM you speak of, it was weak, thin by comparison. I would be willing to retry it, but we all know the rest of that story, don't we.

Different strokes for different folks.

I will agree with you on one point, it was better a day or two after arrival.
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby blairswhitaker » May 19th, '12, 22:48

YM is not high on my favorite list. I will not be likely comparing this to any other YM, though if I do feel the mood for one I will go with someone who does organic or one of the local tea people who get pesticide free tea. I prefer the taste of other fukamushi such as saemidori or okumidori. all that being said I still have bias to asa and chu over fuka.
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby sherubtse » May 20th, '12, 06:54

blairswhitaker wrote: all that being said I still have bias to asa and chu over fuka.


Well, O-Cha *does* have some organic asa-s. (In fact, I am set to try a new one next week.) Unfortunately, they are out-of-stock right now, though the shin versions should be available soon. Pehaps you could try one of those. :mrgreen:

Best wishes,
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby sherubtse » May 20th, '12, 08:55

And, now that I think of it, Zencha has a couple of new Kago organic chu-s, as well as a few 2011 organic asa-s. :)

Best wishes,
sherubtse
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby Chesslover » May 20th, '12, 11:31

My first impressions of O-cha's YM shincha (4g in 4 oz.):

steep #1 (68 deg. C, 60 sec.)
sweet, chestnut, vegetables, umami...delicious taste...liquid is clear if the kyusu is not shaken during pouring, when I make one "swinging" move, the liquid is not so clear

steep #2 (71 deg. C, 20 sec.)
deep green broth, still sweet taste, grassy taste comming in, still full of umami...fukamushi shincha as good as it gets

steep #3 (74 deg. C, 45 sec.)
a little thinner brew, but still excellent for 3rd brew, thick soup, grassy, some umami still there

steep #4 (77 deg. C, 80 sec.)
this one is quite thinner, but because there is not much bitterness, it's still enjoyable

As I'm YM and fukamushi fan, i will reorder this tea more than once, i think :D
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby SilentChaos » May 23rd, '12, 04:45

:cry: now I'm kicking myself for opening Chiran instead of YM. But the Chiran is great too :D Need another fuka to compare it with, as I'm not immediately picking up the supposed 'unique Chiran taste'. I still need to give it a proper quiet moment tasting but has my taste buds gone dumb? :shock: :? :roll:
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby AdamMY » May 23rd, '12, 06:59

SilentChaos wrote::cry: now I'm kicking myself for opening Chiran instead of YM. But the Chiran is great too :D Need another fuka to compare it with, as I'm not immediately picking up the supposed 'unique Chiran taste'. I still need to give it a proper quiet moment tasting but has my taste buds gone dumb? :shock: :? :roll:


This was my own personal experience with sencha/ shincha, but I honestly felt it took me drinking quite a bit of sencha before I could completely taste the differences between them, even now I can be a little shaky if I am not fully paying attention. Sencha almost more so than a lot of other teas I personally feel that due to processing being somewhat standard across all of Japan ( with steam level the biggest difference), offers a rather consistent flavor that is foreign ( at least to those in the the West). This flavor is what strikes most people first, and the differences between Varietals require a whole different level of being aware of sencha, and its flavors.
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby SilentChaos » May 23rd, '12, 07:10

Definitely agreed! Though, I was under the impression that Chiran supposedly has a unique 'Chiran flavour' different from other YMs. Maybe I'm just under a mistaken assumption. At the moment, it just tastes like a different YM (and a good one), different....but not yet tasting the 'unique' stand-out/Chiran part?.... :roll:
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby Jack_teachat » May 24th, '12, 05:06

O-Cha Yutaka Midori

First Impressions

Not as "fuka" as some of Kevin's offerings in the past, plenty of needles! The colour of the dry leaf is stunning, especially against white porcelain, emerald green almost!

Brewing

- Started it last night at 69-70c but have raised it a bit this morning to 72-73 and had much better results.

- Because I currently feel like brewing in larger amounts, I'm going with 7g in 230ml (8.1oz) of water.

- Short Steeps
5s,0s,0s,5s,10s... etc.

- Managed to get about 7 last night before the tea started to fade, impressive!

Overall Impression

Lots of big grassy notes but a little more refined than some more heavily steamed fukas.

It's been a while since I've had any really good sencha, and this has reminded me of just why I first fell in love with Japanese tea!

Bravo :D
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby Jack_teachat » May 24th, '12, 07:59

Jack_teachat wrote:
Short Steeps
5s,0s,0s,5s,10s... etc.



Will probably up this a little on my next session, still in Chinese Gong Fu mode somewhat! :lol:
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Re: 2012 Official Shincha Review Topic

Postby SilentChaos » May 24th, '12, 08:42

Gong fu-ed sencha :D
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