OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1


"Official Tea Tasting Initiative" Teas shared & discussed.

Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Hannah » Mar 23rd, '13, 00:57

Hmmm I wonder when customs here will let it through to me :lol:
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby infinite333 » Mar 24th, '13, 13:59

Image
As I eagerly await my samples, I was hoping some of the more experienced gyokuro brewers would offer some advice. Currently, this is the only teapot I have to brew non-organic teas. The teapot is 24oz and therefore I believe too large for gyokuro. I also have a basket filter and a tokoname teacup that holds 5.5 oz. The filter fits well in the cup and I'm thinking this will be a better setup for brewing. What do you think? What tea/water ratio?

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J
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 24th, '13, 14:54

I will be posting brewing recommendations today or tomorrow! Keep a lookout!

With Gyokuro, think SMALL ... I typically brew in pots holding 2, 3, 4 ounces (30 ml = 1 ounce). And I typically brew 2ish ounces. However at times I brew 1 ounce. And for some Gyokuro, it is not unusual to brew even less ... but this is not the norm. But wait ... there is NO norm!!! Just check out various vendors specializing in Japanese teas, you will begin to see that you will not get a panacea of brewing ... however here we do have suggestions.

Your cup set-up will work fine. If you get into Gyokuro, you will likely want to obtain teaware specifically designed for brewing Gyokuro such as a Shiboridashi, Hobin (sometimes available in sets), or a very small Kyusu ... (also, Korean tea for one "travel sets" are really quite nice for this as well!). A topic under Teaware and Accessories would be ... timely!

However, like most of us when we venture beyond our former limits into new frontiers (for us, individually), we inprovise as needed! :mrgreen: :idea: :arrow:
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 24th, '13, 15:14

... and the new Shiboridashi, Hobin topic ... now it just needs posts and photos!

http://www.teachat.com/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=18456
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 24th, '13, 18:17

In addition to brewing suggestions for these selections, I will be posting the "blind key" which you will need in order to ID each selection. The pouches are numbered 1-4.

For this round, you will have the option of tasting blind or tasting "eyes wide open." But you will need to check the brewing suggestions for each as they differ slightly from one to another!!!!!
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby GreenwoodStudio » Mar 25th, '13, 11:27

IT'S HERE! WooHoo :mrgreen:
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 25th, '13, 12:29

Posted the "blind key" here: http://www.teachat.com/viewtopic.php?f=74&t=18234&p=236710#p236710

Working on the brewing directions which is actually pretty involved. I will post here when completed!
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby JRS22 » Mar 25th, '13, 12:50

GreenwoodStudio wrote:IT'S HERE! WooHoo :mrgreen:


+1

And it's not too late in the day for more tea.....
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Running for Tea » Mar 25th, '13, 17:56

GreenwoodStudio wrote:IT'S HERE! WooHoo :mrgreen:

Mine too 8)
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby debunix » Mar 25th, '13, 23:26

I will definitely wait for the brewing instructions, don't want to waste this opportunity to compare gyos on my gyo-ignorant guesses. I have a very nice small Petr Novak teapot waiting to brew 'em up.
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 26th, '13, 01:41

I will be posting the brewing guide this morning (Tuesday) Eastern USA time!
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby victoria3 » Mar 26th, '13, 01:44

Thanks I got mine today also. To be precise I'm going to wait for the arrival of my new gram scale and thermometer this week. I've been guesstimating for the past few years so took this opportunity to get these gadgets... I'm also looking forward to seeing your steeping recommendations as compared to vendor web site posts. Exciting.
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 26th, '13, 11:31

Here are the brewing suggestions, etc. It is a bit long, but I encourage reading in its entirety as I feel this will help you, us.

For ease of locating, this is also located as the 4th post in this topic!


As I stated, the SPECIFIC brewing guidelines further down the page disclose names, etc. If doing a completely blind tasting, you may be on your own.

Some general guidelines which will be followed by much more specific suggestions to help you get the best results from your Gyokuro samples.

First, try and relax! :mrgreen: Brewing Gyokuro can be a bit challenging, but if you go in prepared and relaxed, your results will be much better and you will enjoy the entire experience so much more!

Try and find a quiet time and place! Distractions will ruin the natural beauty of Gyokuro if you allow it! Quiet will calm your mind and allow your senses to ... focus!

Choose a small brew vessel suited for brewing Gyokuro. Your steeps will be generally quite small, 2ish ounces (60 ml).

PREHEAT all teaware used, but do this in a manner that will also cool your water. Pouring boiling water into your brewing vessel, then to a cooling vessel, and then to your cup(s) will really bring your water temp down and preheat all your wares at the same time, minimizing waste of time and heated water. This may feel a bit awkward at first, but with practice, this process will be very ... fluid, natural. During this process, you are also handling your teaware which helps bring all aspects of your Gyokuro experience into focus.

Much more so than just about every tea, parameters are uber critical in brewing Gyokuro, especially when brewing more concentrated steeps which will truly bring out the fullness of the Gyokuro, maximizing the experience (or exagerate mistakes). When done right, Gyokuro will "force" you to slow down, focus, and pay full attention to your "precious dew."

Temperature ... this can make or break a Gyokuro session! Gyokuro requires rather cool water temps, 105-140* depending on the selection and other details. Do not be ashamed to use a thermometer, especially when learning!

Ratio of leaf to water. Too little leaf will leave you wondering what is so special about Gyokuro. Too much will leave you wondering what you did wrong. Just right amount will make you sit down and focus and smile. It can be happiness in a cup!

Time, time, time ... keep it on your side! Different Gyokuro require different times, but also changing parameters such as how much leaf or temp can also effect how long you should brew.

For successive steeps, I typically recommend increasing temp by around 10* F for each successive steep, bu=y the end boiling water is even fine!. 2nd steep is SHORT, 15-30 seconds. 3rd, 60 ... etc. . 2nd steep is SHORT, 15-30 seconds. 3rd, 60 ... etc.

Depending on how well I feel the tea is doing (and smelling in the Kyusu ... this tell me if it still has life worth redeeming), I will go 5 or more steeps. Albeit, by the end it is basically sweet tea water, but I enjoy it.

AND now some specifics. I will first share the vendors' recommendations ... and then mine (which are always right :wink: ). You will see that mine do not always agree with the vendors'. Keep this in mind, sometimes the vendors are sharing recommendations with novices in mind. Some may be sharing according to Japanese intense tastes. It is a mad mad world when trying to decipher what to do ...

My recommendations are based upon many members' inputs over the years as well as my personal experience with Gyokuro and these specific selections! My recommendations are usually somewhere in the middle of road. Definitely not novice and not quite up to the Japanese tastes. "Western" with a capital "W" for hopefully utterances such as WOW and WHOA! :mrgreen:




1. Zencha's recommendations for Zencha Gyokuro the Ultimate
Brewing tips (for one person)
Amount of Tealeaves: 5g.
Amount of Water: 30cc / 1oz
Water Temperature: 40-50C / 104-122F
Steep: 2 minutes

My recommendations. I find this one is particular about temp!!! So, 105-110* (a little over 50* C) worked best for me. 2.5 grams per ounce water (30 ml). So, if brewing two ounces, you would use exactly half of your sample. Brew for 60 seconds or so. This one is a mid steamed selection and I liked it with slightly shorter steeps.


2. Maiko's long recommendations for Yamashita Jirushi
http://www.maiko.ne.jp/english/gyokuro.htm

My recommendations. I liked this one with 2.5 grams per ounce brewed at 130-140* for 90 seconds.

3. O-Cha's recommedations for Gyoku-Hou
Recommended Brew Temp 140F / 60C
Recommended Brew Time 2.0 minutes
Recommended Leaf to Water Ratio 1.0g per 1oz (30ml) water
Notes Pre-heat all vessels, brew with care!

My recommedations. 2.5 grams per 1 ounce. 130* for 90 seconds.

4. Den's recommendations for Suimei
Water: 2oz @ 140F
Leaves: 2 grams or 1 rounded teaspoon
Steep: 150 sec
2nd Cup: Water @ 160F; Steep 60 sec

My recommendations. 2:1, so 4 grams per 2 ounces, though if trying to use up the 10 gram sample, one could brew 2.5 ounces and 5 grams. I am cooler than Den's recommendation, though I am still playing around with the temps. Den's says 140*, I am saying 120*, maybe even cooler.
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 26th, '13, 11:33

REMEMBER, this is not a competition. It is a somewhat informal internet tasting. This does not mean that you can not have a favorite, etc. But this is not a formal competition conducted by a panel of experts in the field. :mrgreen:

We are sharing our Gyokuro experiences, journey! And this is the first of hopefully 3 successive Gyokuro OTTI rounds!

Please share your experiences, questions, problems, successes.
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Re: OTTI 17, AKA GY-OTTI 1

Postby Chip » Mar 26th, '13, 11:36

Whew! ... a lot to digest before even ... ingesting ... wellll ... relax and enjoy, dangnabbit! :mrgreen:
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