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Sep 7th, '17, 00:11
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by debunix » Sep 7th, '17, 00:11

It's still too warm after I've arrived home, and riding the bicycle home is heating, but I don't'think those are the only reasons that the sparkling An Ji Bai Cha (AJBC from Jing Tea Shop steeped in cold sparkling water for 48 hours) tastes so amazingly good tonight. A little floral, a touch of melon and plum, and briskly bubbly. I need to look again at home carbonation devices for making my own sparkling water. This is gorgeous stuff.

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Sep 7th, '17, 13:27
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by plod » Sep 7th, '17, 13:27

debunix wrote: It's still too warm after I've arrived home, and riding the bicycle home is heating, but I don't'think those are the only reasons that the sparkling An Ji Bai Cha (AJBC from Jing Tea Shop steeped in cold sparkling water for 48 hours) tastes so amazingly good tonight. A little floral, a touch of melon and plum, and briskly bubbly. I need to look again at home carbonation devices for making my own sparkling water. This is gorgeous stuff.
This sounds really good. What other teas have you brewed successfully this way?

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Sep 7th, '17, 13:44
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by plod » Sep 7th, '17, 13:44

I've been tuning my brewing parameters for Ippodo's Hosen, brewing it twice every day. At 74-75 degrees, something happens that doesn't agree with my palate. I initially decreased both temperature and amount of leaf, but have since increased the amount of leaf again. The last few brews were consistently delicious, with 1.3-1.4 grams per 30ml at 72 degrees. I also find a remarkable difference between the little Gyokko tokoname kyusu, and the Ippodo ivory kyusu with glazed interior. Tokoname mellows out astringency and acidity (I think, could be me).

I have to admit, I've always been slightly sceptical towards super precise brewing parameters, usually going about it more intuitively right from the start. But with Sencha I find I need to establish a new base of sorts, before I can play it by ear/nose/palate. And there really is a difference between 69, 72 and 75 degrees (the temperatures I've compared repeatedly the last days).

Speaking of, my bag is growing thin already. I have a 50g bag of Kumpu as well, but I should probably plan ahead and order more soon. I want to give Maiko a try, any suggestions as to where I should start? Other vendors (with low shipping costs) would be welcome, too, of course.

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Sep 7th, '17, 14:36
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by chingwa » Sep 7th, '17, 14:36

I have consistently experienced, for whatever reason, that Ippodo teas require a little more leaf-to-water ratio than other vendors. I recommend adding a +1/3rd amount of leaf, and dropping the temperature to 55-60f. brew around 60 seconds... if it's a little too strong or weak simply adjust the amount of time you steep up or down by 10 seconds.

I'm not surprised the tokoname has a better effect. Clays in general tend to have a mellowing/rounding effect on sencha which I've always preferred.

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Sep 7th, '17, 17:59
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by plod » Sep 7th, '17, 17:59

chingwa wrote: I have consistently experienced, for whatever reason, that Ippodo teas require a little more leaf-to-water ratio than other vendors. I recommend adding a +1/3rd amount of leaf, and dropping the temperature to 55-60f. brew around 60 seconds... if it's a little too strong or weak simply adjust the amount of time you steep up or down by 10 seconds.
Thanks for the input! This is almost exactly what I ended up with, actually: went from 1g/30ml to 1.3-1.4g/30ml, and temperature between 70 and 72 degrees celsius (= 156-162 mystical degrees). Seems that anything higher temperature-wise, and astringency starts overshadowing some of the subtler tastes that I enjoy. Had good results with even more leaf today, will keep on experimenting.

Edit: and thus far, I like brewing for 60 seconds; the pour takes about 20-30 additional seconds though.
chingwa wrote: I'm not surprised the tokoname has a better effect. Clays in general tend to have a mellowing/rounding effect on sencha which I've always preferred.
I've certainly experienced it with puer and roasted oolongs, but I've always thought of green teas (for a long time also lightly oxidized oolongs) as fragile things to be brewed in porcelain or other neutral vessels. While this still works out fine, it'll be interesting to experiment more with how clay affects Senchas and eventually other green teas. If it can mellow out the bite and bring forth nuances and sweetness, that would greatly influence how often I'd want to drink these teas, and of course make comparing different teas more interesting.

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Sep 7th, '17, 19:04
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by chingwa » Sep 7th, '17, 19:04

I should have realized you were referring to celsius... in my head I was thinking 55 - 60, referring to 155-160 :lol: Depending on the tea you might want to try an even lower temp, like 145f for about 20 seconds longer. But the above suggestion, and what you're doing now, is my usual baseline regardless of what it says on the package (which I almost always ignore).

Bringing out the sweetness in Japanese greens is the goal for me, so anything to facillitate that, such as clay, is the way to go. Additionally I find using a true Tetsubin kettle (those with exposed reduced iron interior) to heat your water also adds a great deal to green teas... again talking sweetness and body. They aren't cheap though, so it's a commitment for sure.

Essentially getting a certain mineral content into the water is the goal. You may also experiment with bottled natural waters, such as Volvic and Fiji brands. Or any brand in your area that naturally has a bit higher mineral content.

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Sep 8th, '17, 06:40
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by plod » Sep 8th, '17, 06:40

A tetsubin seems inevitable in the long run. There's no room for hoarding tendencies in my apartment (plus I naively try to curb my materialism), but that particular objet will eventually be given a space.

When it comes to water, I'm quite spoiled. The tap water here is excellent. Ph fairly stable at 7.4+/-0.2, hardness about 2 .2+/- 0.2. But yes, significantly lower also on "desirable" minerals, notably magnesium, than for instance Volvic. Now that you mention it, I don't think they sell much regular bottled water around here. Never seen Volvic or any other flat water in the stores, except some huge no-brand jugs for cabins/boats etc. One of the few things I've always missed when living abroad is the water, whether from tap or right from a spring.

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Sep 8th, '17, 09:23
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by LAC » Sep 8th, '17, 09:23

Good afternoon
I am not very expert in green teas,
the one I usually use in winter is:
"Tea Kukicha Bio 3 years 85 gr Mitoku Natursoy"
https://www.dropbox.com/s/09qmve34d9g1w ... u.jpg?dl=0

Regards
Lluis Abad

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Sep 9th, '17, 12:46
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by debunix » Sep 9th, '17, 12:46

plod wrote:
debunix wrote: It's still too warm after I've arrived home, and riding the bicycle home is heating, but I don't'think those are the only reasons that the sparkling An Ji Bai Cha (AJBC from Jing Tea Shop steeped in cold sparkling water for 48 hours) tastes so amazingly good tonight. A little floral, a touch of melon and plum, and briskly bubbly. I need to look again at home carbonation devices for making my own sparkling water. This is gorgeous stuff.
This sounds really good. What other teas have you brewed successfully this way?
Sencha & gyokuro primarily--as described here.

I'm sure I've tried some light-roast oolongs but can't recall the results being particularly a 'wow'. I think the oolongs really shine with a flash of heat to get started even if it is as little as a spash of boiling water onto dry balled leaves added before heading to the airport (just enough to be absorbed by the leaves and still pass as an 'empty' bottle when passing through security, to be filled up from a drinking fountain on the other side).

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Sep 10th, '17, 14:26
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by JRS22 » Sep 10th, '17, 14:26

A month in to my complete kitchen reno and the delays make me extra happy I provided for tea drinking. I moved a small set of tea things up to my second floor workroom - a shib set from o-cha, a glass gaiwan and pitcher and some cups as well as a sturdy metal tray.

My variable temp kettle will return to the kitchen (when I have one) but I'm thinking of keeping a category of teas upstairs later. My sorely neglected puerh collection would do well with my small electric kettle and some pots. If I have trouble sleeping I can drink puerh since if I'm already awake I won't worry about insomnia.

Here's my set-up with O-Cha Karigane Asa Giri.
IMG_264.jpg
IMG_264.jpg (107.46 KiB) Viewed 499 times

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Sep 10th, '17, 14:41
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by LAC » Sep 10th, '17, 14:41

JRS22 wrote: A month in to my complete kitchen reno and the delays make me extra happy I provided for tea drinking. I moved a small set of tea things up to my second floor workroom - a shib set from o-cha, a glass gaiwan and pitcher and some cups as well as a sturdy metal tray.

My variable temp kettle will return to the kitchen (when I have one) but I'm thinking of keeping a category of teas upstairs later. My sorely neglected puerh collection would do well with my small electric kettle and some pots. If I have trouble sleeping I can drink puerh since if I'm already awake I won't worry about insomnia.

Here's my set-up with O-Cha Karigane Asa Giri.

IMG_264.jpg
Beautiful set, excellent ritual,
just to see it, I feel for taking one,
good photographic composition.

Health
Lluis Abad

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Sep 11th, '17, 18:26
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by plod » Sep 11th, '17, 18:26

Had two sessions with the Tancho-no-mukashi. So far, I like it better than the Horai, actually, mainly because the marine-like richness is a bit less overpowering. However, I think I should do a side-by-side comparison.

One thing that made me appreciate (the Horai) a lot more was eating a piece of candy before drinking. When I did, it really balanced the flavours, like applying an equalizer/filter. A great excuse for having gummy bears before breakfast.

Also got into the Ippodo Rumpu, not sure what I think. Four sessions in, I haven't quite figured it out. It's fuller and rounder than the Hosen, and yields a greener brew. Neither seem to have all that much subtlety, but this is very likely just my untrained palate/inexpert brewing. I really enjoy both, though, the flavours as well as the gentle, refreshing effect.

Already a bit worried about running out of Sencha. I've ordered some reinforcements from Thés-du-Japon, a place that could very well be bad for my wallet in the years to come.

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Sep 20th, '17, 04:04
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by Rui » Sep 20th, '17, 04:04

Uji Sencha Miyabi from O-Cha. Having a short break from pu'er teas at the moment and this is a great alternative.

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Oct 3rd, '17, 11:41
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by debunix » Oct 3rd, '17, 11:41

Tai Ping Hou Kui from Wing Hop Fung. Love the mix of vegetal, floral, and cinnamon-spice.

Oct 4th, '17, 16:20
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by Yatra Tea Co » Oct 4th, '17, 16:20

Glenburn Estate (Darjeeling) First Flush 2017.

When I got into the tea biz a few months ago, and was sourcing tea from India, I did not have much hope for green teas. But I sourced a couple - one from Darjeeling and the other from the Kangra Valley - and was pretty amazed at the quality. Now I am a regular drinker of both.

I joke with my wife - I would not make a good drug dealer because I am constantly dipping into my stash!

I am in the process of buying a couple of Japanese and Chinese greens to compare to the ones I sourced. For personal consumption and not for sale. Would love recommendations!

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