Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?


Made from leaves that have not been oxidized.

Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby Chip » Jan 27th, '13, 13:01

Wow, quite a write-up for that aracha. If it is too bitter, bring the temp down to normal sencha range and/or shorten the brew time. I would think if you lower the temp, you may have to increase the time... ?

I received the 3 Zairai offerings from Hojo, only tried the cheapest so far. It is interesting, floral, and smelling the brew right after steeping is quite floral ... but this is fleeting. Very interesting and different. Hojo says most people either love or hate his selections because they are not what is normally purchased and consumed.

I might have a small sample of one of the Jabuzan which is also Zairai.

Reading the different listings takes some time and concentration to fully understand what Hojo is inferring for all his selections ... there is no shortage of text. :lol:
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby blairswhitaker » Jan 27th, '13, 15:28

GARCH wrote:
David R. wrote:May I ask what parameters you used ?

This is quite a different sencha compared to what you may be accustomed to. It was grown using no pesticids and no fertilizers, which means no umami. So if you were expecting some, you ought to be disappointed for sure...

Presently about to brew a very nice TaiPing Houkui.


Hmm I used 7-8g in a 330ml Tokoname kyusu, but only filled it to roughly 250-270ml. For temperature and steeping time wise I followed Akira's parameters, 90degrees and 30sec steeping. It came out really astringent and bitter as a first taste, but it did lead to a nice, raw and thick vegetal sweetness. It's not very prominent though :?


I am familiar with this tea, here is how I do it. ( I don't care for Hojo's brewing methods with green tea, oolong and puerh I like his hot water flash steeping but green tea, I think his recommendations scald the leaf.)

first steep: 1gram per oz, (your right in the ballpark with your tea to water ratio) water at 75c for 1min

second steep: water at 80c for 15sec

third steep: water at 80c for 1min

fourth steep: water at 85c for 1:20

I would give this a try and see what the results are like for you, it should cut down on the astringency quite a bit. I found the this tea to be thick and sweet, very nice.
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby Chip » Jan 27th, '13, 15:40

So, I broke out the Zairai Sencha from Hojo to start the TeaDay.
Then Yutaka Midori from O-Cha.

These two selections are so far apart in virtually every respect that they are practically from different planets ... or solar systems.

But this was a very enjoyable variety!
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby tenuki » Jan 27th, '13, 16:24

Tried to make some green tea today, but ran into problems...

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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby Chip » Jan 27th, '13, 16:35

... your technique could use a little tweaking ... :idea:
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby andrzej bero » Jan 27th, '13, 18:44

andrzej bero wrote:Few posts ago I asked here about Maccha Uji no Sato from Maiko. Despite the lack of recommendations I ordered :) I do not deny - I was seduced by the price. So I say - I'm very pleased. A great balance between sweetness and bitterness. Just like it.


After a few days of regular meetings with this tea I have to verify my opinion. The bitterness definitely prevails. Anyway still, no regrets. Nice colour and easy to work with.
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby andrzej bero » Jan 27th, '13, 19:05

David R. wrote:This is quite a different sencha compared to what you may be accustomed to. It was grown using no pesticids and no fertilizers, which means no umami.


David, I know this view but I admit that I never fully understand it. Can you explain it to me - what is the relationship between pesticides and umami. I wonder becuse "umami" taste is known for sure earlier than pesticides.


btw - superb looking Tai Ping. Comes from?
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby debunix » Jan 27th, '13, 19:37

IIRC, the argument goes like this: plants grown with fertilizer have more opportunity to accumulate substances in the leaf that translate to umami in the brew.
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby NOESIS » Jan 27th, '13, 21:14

GARCH wrote:Uji Sencha Jubuzan from Hojo Tea. Not sure if it's my brewing or tastebuds but it doesn't really taste that fantastic :?


I've tried all of the Japanese teas from Hojo, and like you, I didn't find them to be very flavorful. I believe it has more to do with his selections, rather than the fact that they were grown w/o pesticides and chem fertilizers. I've had many different varieties from YC that had far more flavor....and they were light or medium steamed.

Currently drinking Ippodo sencha Kaboku.
Last edited by NOESIS on Jan 27th, '13, 21:29, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby blairswhitaker » Jan 27th, '13, 21:28

a nitrogen rich environment is really the key to a LOT of umami, now of course your N-P-K values must still be in balance within the PH parameters. shading and increasing chlorophyll content also gives a boost in glutamine and glutamic acid, this provides flavor note that gives us the "umami"

Nitrogen loading is the basic principal behind what we now consider the "modern" sencha flavor. this does not infer organic or inorganic as you can create readily available nitorgen through both farming methods, though the "synthetic fertilized" tea is much easier to apply direct doses of nitrogen while organic methods do tend to be more subtle. I strongly prefer organic tea myself and frequently find synthetic fertilized tea to overemphasize the umami at a cost of some of the other more subtle nuances. their is another method that some of the tea hojo sells and a farmer I know in hawaii uses, and that is to fertilize with nothing but a grass cover. This is the most uncommon method, the tea can come across as weak unless the tea has developed a serious tap root, though I feel the tea hojo offers has accomplished just that. this method produces less umami, and more floral and sweet notes to me.

pesticides should be avoided at all cost and will add nothing positive to your tea drinking experience
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby NOESIS » Jan 27th, '13, 22:06

blairswhitaker wrote:a nitrogen rich environment is really the key to a LOT of umami, now of course your N-P-K values must still be in balance within the PH parameters. shading and increasing chlorophyll content also gives a boost in glutamine and glutamic acid, this provides flavor note that gives us the "umami"

Nitrogen loading is the basic principal behind what we now consider the "modern" sencha flavor. this does not infer organic or inorganic as you can create readily available nitorgen through both farming methods, though the "synthetic fertilized" tea is much easier to apply direct doses of nitrogen while organic methods do tend to be more subtle. I strongly prefer organic tea myself and frequently find synthetic fertilized tea to overemphasize the umami at a cost of some of the other more subtle nuances. their is another method that some of the tea hojo sells and a farmer I know in hawaii uses, and that is to fertilize with nothing but a grass cover. This is the most uncommon method, the tea can come across as weak unless the tea has developed a serious tap root, though I feel the tea hojo offers has accomplished just that. this method produces less umami, and more floral and sweet notes to me.

pesticides should be avoided at all cost and will add nothing positive to your tea drinking experience


Blair,
I too would prefer a tasty organic tea if I find it to be comparable to a "modern" one. For instance, I generally drink asamushi senchas from Ippodo and Maiko, but have found quite a few organic teas from YC and OC that are in the same league (although I would say that I generally enjoy the flavor profile of my fave Ippodo/Maiko teas a bit more)? As far as gyos and matcha, I haven't found this to be the case. I have yet to drink organic gyo/matcha that I would buy on a regular basis.
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby blairswhitaker » Jan 28th, '13, 00:30

NOESIS wrote:
blairswhitaker wrote:a nitrogen rich environment is really the key to a LOT of umami, now of course your N-P-K values must still be in balance within the PH parameters. shading and increasing chlorophyll content also gives a boost in glutamine and glutamic acid, this provides flavor note that gives us the "umami"

Nitrogen loading is the basic principal behind what we now consider the "modern" sencha flavor. this does not infer organic or inorganic as you can create readily available nitorgen through both farming methods, though the "synthetic fertilized" tea is much easier to apply direct doses of nitrogen while organic methods do tend to be more subtle. I strongly prefer organic tea myself and frequently find synthetic fertilized tea to overemphasize the umami at a cost of some of the other more subtle nuances. their is another method that some of the tea hojo sells and a farmer I know in hawaii uses, and that is to fertilize with nothing but a grass cover. This is the most uncommon method, the tea can come across as weak unless the tea has developed a serious tap root, though I feel the tea hojo offers has accomplished just that. this method produces less umami, and more floral and sweet notes to me.

pesticides should be avoided at all cost and will add nothing positive to your tea drinking experience


Blair,
I too would prefer a tasty organic tea if I find it to be comparable to a "modern" one. For instance, I generally drink asamushi senchas from Ippodo and Maiko, but have found quite a few organic teas from YC and OC that are in the same league (although I would say that I generally enjoy the flavor profile of my fave Ippodo/Maiko teas a bit more)? As far as gyos and matcha, I haven't found this to be the case. I have yet to drink organic gyo/matcha that I would buy on a regular basis.



Have you tired YC tenkei hana matcha? this is a superb and umami rich matcha with a lot of complexity, and it is of course best served as koicha the tenkei tori is nice as well makes a great cup of usucha. But the tenkei hana is outstanding, and I have tried a LOT of different matchas.

the company's you list Ippodo and Maiko both specialize predominately in blended senchas so maybe you don't prefer single farm sencha as much as you prefer the blends. a lot of blends are meant to give the "best of both worlds" type of attitude rather than showcase a specific breed from a specific farm.
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby NOESIS » Jan 28th, '13, 01:25

blairswhitaker wrote:Have you tired YC tenkei hana matcha? this is a superb and umami rich matcha with a lot of complexity, and it is of course best served as koicha the tenkei tori is nice as well makes a great cup of usucha. But the tenkei hana is outstanding, and I have tried a LOT of different matchas.

the company's you list Ippodo and Maiko both specialize predominately in blended senchas so maybe you don't prefer single farm sencha as much as you prefer the blends. a lot of blends are meant to give the "best of both worlds" type of attitude rather than showcase a specific breed from a specific farm.


I suspect you're on to something. Although as I mentioned, I've very much enjoyed various offerings from OC and YC, which are varietal specific (and more recently some excellent sencha and gyo from Thes du Japon). But as with wines, my faves tend to be blends (Bordeaux and Rhone). Oddly enough, I only buy single-origin coffees from my favorite micro-roasters. :o

Oh yeah, haven't tried the specific matcha that you mentioned, but I shall soon remedy that. I need a new chasen, and I've had my eye on the shichiku (Tanimura) that YC has in stock. If tenkei hana is available, I'll add it to the cart. :wink:
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby Chip » Jan 28th, '13, 02:55

... O-Cha Gyoku Hou Gyokuro!

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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

Postby Alex » Jan 28th, '13, 03:14

I've only ever drunk organic sencha. The few times I've drunk non-organic its tasted weird and overbearing. I think it probably just comes down to readjusting your taste buds a little.
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