NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea


"Official Tea Tasting Initiative" Teas shared & discussed.

Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby Poohblah » Sep 9th, '12, 22:09

I'm sure Brandon will be disappointed in me. Unable to locate his water of preference, I've had to taste both the Tenryu and the Tenjo with Brita filtered water. Already having experienced that tap water and half-tap half-filtered water are both too hard for Japanese greens, I can see why a good water will really make these teas sing. Although filtered water is fine for cheapo sencha, these teas deserve better water.

That being said, Tenryu has left me speechless. I simply do not have the words to describe how lovely this tea is. I find it to be more vegetal and grassy than the Tenjo, but also warm, in a way, like the way that a glass of red wine is warm.
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby brandon » Sep 10th, '12, 06:37

No worries Poohblah, is just that these teas are about texture as much as anything else.
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby tinols » Sep 10th, '12, 16:30

I like both. The Tenryu is a lot better though. :)
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby brose » Sep 11th, '12, 00:32

Got mine today, thanks. I'm waiting until I finish off an what was already opened before starting.
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby the_economist » Sep 16th, '12, 12:40

Second round with the Tenryu. This tea has amazing after taste...its ridiculous. A little bit of bitter to herald the later sweetness. The after taste is very resilient too. Still smacking my lips...

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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby BioHorn » Sep 17th, '12, 16:09

Enjoyed the tenjo with family. Used Evian and lowered the temp a bit
1-150 F 60 sec.
2-150 F 30 sec.
3-160 F 60 sec.
4-hotter and +- 2 min. This made a quite cloudy rich broth.

Running off. Thanks Chip!
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby Poohblah » Sep 17th, '12, 19:46

Really enjoying the Tenjo today. Still going strong at 9 steeps; finally the liquor is starting to turn from thick and murky to light and clear and the flavor is losing its umami to become sweet teawater.
the_economist wrote:Image
What is that next to your kettle? An Elizabethean-era dagger? A prop to be used in a performance of a Shakespearean tragedy? Or maybe just a fancy letter-opener or West-meets-East pu knife?
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby the_economist » Sep 17th, '12, 21:35

its a letter opener - turned pu knife.
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby sriracha » Sep 19th, '12, 11:27

Sorry for being a no-show lately but I just wanted to say that my package arrived a few days ago, safe and sound. =)
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby the_economist » Sep 19th, '12, 14:15

Sorry for spamming this topic but my mind is being blown by good sencha.

This morning I tried out 'gongfu style' sencha with the tenryu. Nothing too dramatic, short 5 second-ish steeps (I swirl the water a bit and then pour out). I didn't measure water temperature but I basically waited til fish eye boil (about 90 deg C) and then poured into yuzamashi, and then poured into houhin, so maybe 80-85 deg C hitting the leaf.

The 1st infusion was delicate, really nice, quite different from the usual tenryu taste.

2nd - 5th infusion were much more similar to the tenryu standard profile. Thick, umami, bitters with sweet aftertaste. Instead of it hitting you all at once, different elements ebb and flow across steeps.

6th - 8th infusion were faded infusions, but they resisted taking on the veggie-swampy tastes that I'm used to after the 4th infusion in the standard sencha brew. That is to say, they were sweet, light, with some aftertaste still, and very pleasant drinking. A tiny bit of veggie-ness crept in on the 8th. Also, water was allowed to get a little bit hotter on these infusions.
Last edited by the_economist on Sep 22nd, '12, 15:38, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby shinobicha » Sep 21st, '12, 17:34

I have tried both the Tenjo and Tenryu... I will hold back my comments on the Tenjo as I continue to taste and experiment with it.
However, the Tenryu has been easier to brew and review so without further ado . . . :roll:

The leaves are very long and mostly whole; I have only seen a few teas with this nice of an appearance - a few of the asamushi (futsumushi) teas from Thes du Japon, and a few from Den's tea / SDS Japan.

They dry leaves emit a nice, refreshing, flowery aroma as well, which becomes more pronounced upon hitting the warm teapot.
By the 4th steep, they open up huge! This is one of my favorite aspects of asamushi.

The aroma of the tea itself is incredible; if I knew flowers better, I could describe the specific varieties and floral notes, but lets just say the aroma is as intense as perfume. If this were a flavored or scented tea, it would almost make me think they over-scented it. However, being a pure sencha shows, to me at least, how well it is made.

Based on the aroma and appearance of the leaves once open, it reminds me strongly of the micro-fermented sencha by Hiruma (from Thes du Japon). For those of you who've had O-cha's version, I wouldn't be surprised if there is similarity between this tea and the Hana no Kaori LE that was released in the last year once or twice.
I'm certain this tea isn't purposely micro-fermented the way Hiruma does it (with special UV lights and all!), but the fragrance has been similarly developed.

Anyway, I will review the Tenjo at some point later... this has been a great NOTTI (both selections) and I look forward to more.
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby KimChristian » Sep 22nd, '12, 04:52

I am still waaaiiiiting for my samples to arrive... :|
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby edkrueger » Sep 23rd, '12, 15:02

Chip, when do we get to know where these teas came from? Or is the company not set up in the US yet?
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby Chip » Sep 23rd, '12, 17:31

KimChristian wrote:I am still waaaiiiiting for my samples to arrive... :|

Well, I believe I have done everything required for German customs!!! Still, I guess once they get a package, they can take a while to move it on the the recipient?

Hopefully it will arrive this week!!!

edkrueger wrote:Chip, when do we get to know where these teas came from? Or is the company not set up in the US yet?

The seller does pretty limited retail online, most offerings must be purchased in wholesale blocks which is the vendor's focus at this time. I will ask the vendor if there is a preference in disclosure.

Otherwise, they can be purchased in future NOTTI rounds. For instance, if and when I do another round from this source, I may also offer Tenryu again in addition to two new offerings.

Speaking of which ... NOTTI 2 anyone. :twisted:
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Re: NOTTI Round 1, Tea 'n' Tea

Postby edkrueger » Sep 23rd, '12, 19:13

That sounds very promising. :D
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