How much sencha (grams) do you use?


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How much sencha (grams) do you use?

Postby Taigu » Jan 25th, '07, 11:15

Hi, I bought recently a wonderful book, Jane Pettigrew's The Tealover's Companion, which has a directory of 80 major teas from around the world. In her book, Ms Pettigrew recommends that you use 6 grams of sencha per 160 ml (5.5 fl oz). (80C/175F for 2 minutes). Can this be really right?

Using the same ratio, when preparing two small cups, one would need 14 grams for 350 mls of water, which is a lot of tea - certainly more than two teaspoons, maybe closer to two heaping tablespoons.

I know some think that one should follow one's insticts, and while I partly agree, I am also interested in how the teas really should taste and be prepared.

Previously, I have used the "teaspoon per cup" rule, which produces very mild and light, but still pleasant sencha. It was like drinking hot water, with a very subtle hint of a pleasant green tea taste.

Now I bought a digital scale, and brewed sencha according to 6 grams per 160 ml, which produced a totaly different taste. Now the sencha is more of an aquired taste, definetly stronger, more grass-like, with a hint of bitterness (not in a negative way) mixed in. I like this "new sencha" too, but it certainly is different.

Can some one help and tell me which is the "real sencha", which is the way properly brewed sencha ought to taste like? Does your sencha taste subtle or strongly like grass?
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Postby Chip » Jan 25th, '07, 13:22

...lol...Jane must also be a crack addict. That is a lot of leaf!!!

Everyone's tastes are going to differ a little. I drink sencha usually 2X per day and each time I have it, I usually get around 5 steeps. The first is most aromatic, the 2nd is usually the best flavor....and three though 5 generally move from that grassy taste to a mellow sweetness. But going from sencha to sencha will provide you with a different flavor profile

I usually use 4-4.25 grams (digital scales rule when it comes to sencha...in my book anyway)/200ml. Temp will vary from sencha to sencha depending on several factors including quality and origin. I use a preheated kyusu (one handled Japanese tokoname clay teapot) and brew the first steep at 165-176* for 40 sec-120 sec...again depending on the sencha. The second steep at a few degrees warmer for 30 seconds and no more!!! The 3rd-5th steeps I increase temp and time from steep to steep...the last steep I use boiling water.

Sencha is an aquired taste...but it is also about aquiring quality fresh sencha. Since almost all Japanese tea is steamed vs. "fried" like Chinese...freshness is critical. I cannot emphasize this enough!!!

Sencha in my book is the most flavorful and aromatic non flavored green tea on the planet...and once you nail down the parameters to your tastes...you will be an addict...it combines grassiness with vegetal and sweetness.

I hope this helps, Taigu.....
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Postby Taigu » Jan 25th, '07, 13:38

Thanks, that was helpful. I'll guess I just have to experiment a bit. Seems to me, that I have been brewing too light sencha previously. Jane's recipe was maybe bit too strong, though.

I'm going to Japan next August, which will hopefully bring me a opportunity to evidence sencha the native style.
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Postby Chip » Jan 25th, '07, 14:02

Taigu wrote:Thanks, that was helpful. I'll guess I just have to experiment a bit. Seems to me, that I have been brewing too light sencha previously. Jane's recipe was maybe bit too strong, though.

I'm going to Japan next August, which will hopefully bring me a opportunity to evidence sencha the native style.


You are welcome...
That is awesome that you are going to Japan...
Jane may have been a little confused with Gyokuro, a shade grown Japanese tea,...one uses a lot of leaf...6-8 grams per 200 ml. I have not read her book, though.
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Re: How much sencha (grams) do you use?

Postby Anotherhealthnu... » Mar 7th, '13, 20:56

I use 4 g (weighed from 2 x 2 teaspoons) to make a 1 liter batch.
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Re: How much sencha (grams) do you use?

Postby Alex » Mar 8th, '13, 10:07

Holy 6 year thread bump batman. 8)
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