I can't quite put my finger on it, but there's just something about Bancha that is wonderful.
I bought some on the cheap (I assume most of it is) - a whole bag of it, over the weekend. My first Bancha purchase. I expected to see shavings and dust, and leaves that just looked unwholesome in general. Much to my surprise, I was met with a lovely, grassy aroma. The leaves are large and dark green. They look strong and substantial. The aroma of the leaves, when left to sit in a wet shiboridashi, is of a full grassy, toasted sort. Very inviting.
The tea tastes full and bright - this is not a weak tea. Heavy grassiness, but with a little kick, sort of a toasty finish, perhaps due to the twigs.
I felt a little drugged after the first cup. Man, is that grassiness ever pronounced. I have to say, my first Bancha experience was not at all unpleasant.
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