Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18


"Official Tea Tasting Initiative" Teas shared & discussed.

Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby bambooforest » Jun 7th, '13, 20:00

I found the kondo-wase to be extraordinary. It appears this cultivar hails from Assam. I definitely get the almond like flavor. Complex, rich tea. The liquor has beautiful clarity. Nice that you can steep this asamushi with such hot water. The hand picked leaves sink right to the bottom of the teapot. Very uplifting tea, somehow. Excellent.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby Poohblah » Jun 7th, '13, 20:35

In my experience some asa benefit very much from hot water. It does not seem to be dependent on the quality of the tea.

I've been going through the fukas to start. I've tried both Sugimoto offerings and the Dens. Will comment later... the Sugimoto offerings appear to be rather picky about brewing; they seem to like really hot water...
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby hopeofdawn » Jun 8th, '13, 00:07

Received my shincha yesterday! I also started with the kondo-wase--completely random, #31 was just at the top of the pile. I have to echo what other people are saying--wow! I'm pretty cautious when it comes to sencha, because it's often too astringent for my palate, but this is an amazing tea.

Brewing parameters (I tend towards weaker brews): 3 grams to 100 ml water at 185 degrees in a preheated porcelain pot, 45 secs on 1st, 30 secs on 2nd, 45 secs-1 min on successive brews. Amazing fruity/citrusy scent, and lovely taste that spreads over the tongue.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby Remick » Jun 8th, '13, 01:37

O-Cha's YM -

For both sessions, the first steep was the best. Sweet, floral, balanced with enough umami to keep it interesting. I usually like the second steep best with fuka but not here. It wasn't bad, just more bitter and not as special. I watched my temps and times, which were very close to saxon75's. Pushing the session further, I couldn't get the magic back but it was never bad.

Edited to say: The above doesn't really express my general feelings of the tea quite right. It's good. No doubt. It's just that its first impression was really good.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby Pablo » Jun 8th, '13, 10:07

One more that started with kondo-wase...I had high expectations with this tea.
I have followed the Chip´s parameters.
Let me say that,I love the scent this tea which smell something like apricot.
I found a complex flavor with a little bitter and citrus notes,I liked it this Sincha.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby JRS22 » Jun 8th, '13, 11:33

I began with Zencha Kagoshima Sencha Super Premium, using 3.3 grams in a 75 ml Kyusu. I've been steeping at 150°, beginning with Chip's times and adjusting down as the bitterness increased. I don't know if its the tea, the pot, or me, but my super bitterness gene wasn't overwhelmed by this tea. A good beginning for this OTTI.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby Running for Tea » Jun 8th, '13, 13:56

I just finished my first OTTI Shincha. After reading the other posts about the Kondo-wase, it seemed like a good place to begin. It certainly didn't disappoint! The dry leaf aroma was as stunning as promised :shock: The complex, floral flavor was a wonderful way to start this OTTI :mrgreen:
I went with 1.25:1 and no preheat.
185* 70s
185* 30s (I plan on dropping to 175-180* 20s next time)
185* 1m
195* 2m

I'm looking forward to experiencing the remainder of the teas!
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby AdamMY » Jun 8th, '13, 14:23

Yamakai is really hitting the spot on this lazy Saturday, crisp and clear, and just refreshing.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby AdamMY » Jun 8th, '13, 17:01

Grabbed another one from the bag for a post long walk tea. O-cha Yutaka Midori was selected. As usual this is a very nice selection.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby MIKE_B » Jun 8th, '13, 19:59

Yesterday I brewed TdJ's Yamakai in a small shiboridashi following their parameters. Very strong. There was a flavor there I could not put my finger on. I didn't care for it.
Now I am brewing the remainder of the sample using twice as much water in an unglazed kyusu. Much better for me. Lighter, refreshing. The flavor I didn't like was gone.

Thursday I brewed Maiko's Kinari. I thoroughly enjoyed it. I tasted notes of muscatel. Also grapes in the aroma, I thought. A very nice tea.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby Pablo » Jun 9th, '13, 06:27

I have continued with the samples....This time I brewed Den's Houryoku
A strong vegetal flavor with much body and no bitterness,is good.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby AdamMY » Jun 9th, '13, 15:35

Sorry but the Kinari in my cup is mine! but if you look at this photo really intently I think you can almost smell it!

Image
Maiko Kinari Shincha 2013 (2) by Adam Yusko, on Flickr

It is really hitting the spot today! ( Melts back into his Kinari.)
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby saxon75 » Jun 9th, '13, 18:28

I tried the Kondo-wase yesterday morning, and like everyone else I quite enjoyed it. Interestingly, I ended up liking the third steep the best, which had a wonderful fruity flavor and sweetness, where the first two steeps had more dry bitterness on top of the fruit. I would have liked to take it through another couple of steeps but I ran out of time.

One thing was that I had a hard time getting the temperatures right--the water kept cooling faster than I could get it into the kyusu.

Kondo-wase: 5g in 4 oz, in an 8-oz kyusu.
1st: 70 sec @ 84C
2nd: 20 sec @ 85C
3rd: 90 sec @ 88C

This afternoon I tried the Maiko Karigane. This was my first experience with a kukicha, and I think it may be my new favorite Japanese tea. The first steep was by far the best. There were hints of pine and fruit in the flavor, with a nice sweetness, but what really knocked me out was the full texture and buttery quality. Sadly, the buttery-ness didn't last past the first steep. In later steeps it got milder and a bit grassier, with a very pleasant sweetness that lingered on the tongue.

Karigane: 5g in 150 ml, in an 8-oz kyusu.
1st: 60 sec @ 70C
2nd: 20 sec @ 73C
3rd: 2 min @ 76C
4th: 4 min @ 79C

There was so little bitterness in this that I wondered if it could take hotter temperatures from the get-go. I may play with that the next go-round.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby victoria3 » Jun 9th, '13, 19:11

saxon75 wrote:.... One thing was that I had a hard time getting the temperatures right--the water kept cooling faster than I could get it into the kyusu.

Saxon I also had this problem. I devised somewhat of a solution- preheat my pyrex measuring cup on the stove top inside a pan with water in it and keep it in the warm water between sessions. This only worked up to 198F though. For anything over that, I boiled water in my kettle and directly poured into the kyusu. I now see why so many people have electric kettles with temperature level indicators.
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Re: Shincha OTTI 2013 AKA OTTI 18

Postby victoria3 » Jun 9th, '13, 21:53

I also decided to give Thes du Japon Kondowase a go. First, the shimmering silky handpicked needles are stunning and impart a delightful floral aroma. As I am eternally curious, I researched the cultivar used, Kondo-wase. It is really a cross between Inzatsu 131 (an “unknown Japanese cultivar and an Assam cultivar, Manipuli 5” *) and Yabukita (dominant Japanese high yielding Shizuoka cultivar**) so it is really just 1/4 Assam. The cultivar that imparts its wonderful fragrance is Manipuli 5, known for its very strong floral aroma.

This is a first for me, a fruit floral sincha with buttery nutty notes. I really enjoyed its freshness and lightness also. I also tasted background astringency in the 1/2/3 steeps which I enjoyed. But be careful, Do Not Pre-Heat kyusu. I forgot and preheated my 1st brew and it came out too astringent. Luckily I had enough leaf for one more brew. Uhh, and now its finished. I meant to get 2X… what a tease 1X is.

Image My Huang Yongyu owl overseeing the tea session with; 200ml Bizen kyusu with Mogake design & a Bizen cup with Hamada style weeds. In the back a drippy light blue Tanbayaki Tachikui cup by Tsuyoshi Uenaka with black ash and a leaky drippy very porous redware Ikebana slip glazed vase.

1st_ 1.25:1/185/70 (kyusu not pre-heated) Shiny forest green dry leaf has a fresh fruity floral aroma. Liquor has a smooth fruity floral aroma, with buttery croissant notes. Definitely a unique sincha. Pleasant background astringency. Leaf is less broken up than #21 Zencha Kagoshima Super Premium, so the filter doesn’t need to be so fine, it can be ball or direct as well.

2nd_ 190/50, buttery smooth, background astringency, nice lingering palate. Strong floral fragrance lingers in liquor and cup. Astringency there but pleasant flavorful.

3rd_ 200/1.5, let it go to 2.5, Liquor still fragrant, buttery, fruity flavorful with background astringency.

4th_ Poured kettle boiled water directly into kyusu/4.5min, liquor still somewhat fragrant with pleasant background astringency. Still fruity, but lighter.

5th_ 4/205/6, I just poured water that had boiled directly into kyusu because the highest temp I could measure in the preheated Pyrex cup was 195. It drops so quickly at higher temps.

6th_ Stove top 5second roll/4 minute steep. Still flavorful and buttery.

p.s. I am experimenting with google plus and picasa for images. Not sure if the link to image and album works.
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