Oct 14th, '16, 21:57
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by Teaarch » Oct 14th, '16, 21:57

Just finished the last of Yamashita's Gyokuro from Maiko (the sample set with 8g of each one of his teas), starting with the least expensive and working my way up. This was only the 2nd or 3rd time I've ever had gyokuro. Each of the previous times I was never really impressed that much by it, though partly that was my fault (I never had the proper vessel to brew it in).

After finishing the least expensive two, my impression really didn't change much (the first two were essentially much the same). I did welcome the difference from sencha, but I still couldn't really see what the fuss was about. The 3rd one, the Nomigoro, was where there was a bit of a quality jump. Definitely better than the first two, but nothing exceptional yet.

I wasn't really impressed until the most expensive one, the Yashiki no Cha. Definitely a very good tea, sweet, mellow, beautiful looking leaves and an amazing aroma. However, considering the price of the stuff, 27,000 yen, I could never see myself actually buying this. But I definitely am looking into other high quality gyokuros, though hopefully for a little cheaper.

Anyone with more experience of gyokuro have any recommendations? (Or has anyone else tried Yamashita's gyokuros?)

I've been looking at horaido's gyokuros, but considering how their tea is aged, I wouldn't think I'd want to order any until next year at the earliest.

debunix wrote:Tsuen Aoi sencha from O-Cha. Somehow a package of this slipped into my recent order of the Kamairi Tamaryokucha that has been so good cool-brewed (and is quite tasty hot too). I had a lovely first infusion this morning, then put more hot water over it in the pot but was called away before pouring this second infusion. I returned more than an hour later, poured about half out and diluted it with more hot water, and the result is smooth and sublime--not what I expect from an overdone 2nd infusion. Love this tea.
Been thinking of trying the Aoi. I've ordered the San no Ma before and was wondering how it would compare.

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Oct 14th, '16, 23:39
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by Tead Off » Oct 14th, '16, 23:39

Teaarch wrote:Just finished the last of Yamashita's Gyokuro from Maiko (the sample set with 8g of each one of his teas), starting with the least expensive and working my way up. This was only the 2nd or 3rd time I've ever had gyokuro. Each of the previous times I was never really impressed that much by it, though partly that was my fault (I never had the proper vessel to brew it in).

After finishing the least expensive two, my impression really didn't change much (the first two were essentially much the same). I did welcome the difference from sencha, but I still couldn't really see what the fuss was about. The 3rd one, the Nomigoro, was where there was a bit of a quality jump. Definitely better than the first two, but nothing exceptional yet.

I wasn't really impressed until the most expensive one, the Yashiki no Cha. Definitely a very good tea, sweet, mellow, beautiful looking leaves and an amazing aroma. However, considering the price of the stuff, 27,000 yen, I could never see myself actually buying this. But I definitely am looking into other high quality gyokuros, though hopefully for a little cheaper.

Anyone with more experience of gyokuro have any recommendations? (Or has anyone else tried Yamashita's gyokuros?)

I've been looking at horaido's gyokuros, but considering how their tea is aged, I wouldn't think I'd want to order any until next year at the earliest.

debunix wrote:Tsuen Aoi sencha from O-Cha. Somehow a package of this slipped into my recent order of the Kamairi Tamaryokucha that has been so good cool-brewed (and is quite tasty hot too). I had a lovely first infusion this morning, then put more hot water over it in the pot but was called away before pouring this second infusion. I returned more than an hour later, poured about half out and diluted it with more hot water, and the result is smooth and sublime--not what I expect from an overdone 2nd infusion. Love this tea.
Been thinking of trying the Aoi. I've ordered the San no Ma before and was wondering how it would compare.
The best gyokuro I've had in a long while is Hojo's Asahina gyokuro. You could also try Thes du Japon gyokuro from Hoshino village, Yame. Hojo's is on a different level.

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Oct 19th, '16, 00:54
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by victoria3 » Oct 19th, '16, 00:54

O-Cha's 2016 Yutaka Midori sincha followed by 2013 Chiran Sencha "Kaoru" today. Both are first flush from Kagoshima. The Chiran is medium steamed, from the productive and popular Yabukita cultivar, with a lighter overall flavor profile, while the Yutaka Midori is deep steamed smaller production Yutaka Midori cultivar resulting in a thicker richer brew. With both I uped the leaf/water ratio slightly (1.2gr /1oz ) resulting in richer brews, while keeping water temperatures and times as before. Both are delicious although the Yutaka Midori sincha in my opinion is richer with a longer lasting flavor profile.

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Oct 22nd, '16, 22:15
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by victoria3 » Oct 22nd, '16, 22:15

I have died and gone to heaven with Ippodo's Tokusen Gyokuro (Premium Gyokuro). Not sure I want to return to earth as this is only available in Kyoto. This is the best I've ever had; rich with umami, almost broth like, yet very mellow, elegant and sweet. Wow.

Any other recommendations for high quality umami rich elegant Gyokuro? Maybe Hojo's....or?

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Oct 23rd, '16, 00:15
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by debunix » Oct 23rd, '16, 00:15

No great thoughts on gyokuro--I'm still enjoying my adequate gyokuros with no desire for the fancier grades.

I came to report on the first trials of the teas my friend Cal from Japan brought me from the tea event he attended (and shared a bit with me via facetime).

He brought me all of these:

Image161016 Tea from Japan _DEB9038 by D B, on Flickr

and the first one I tried--Yakushima Hachinmanjyu Organic Green Tea--is teabags

Image161016 Yakushima Hachinmanjyu Organic Green & Hojicha_DEB9044 by D B, on Flickr

Image161016 Yakushima Hachinmanjyu Organic Green Tea _DEB9047 by D B, on Flickr

but it is the best tea from teabags I have ever had.

Image161016 Yakushima Hachinmanjyu Organic Green Tea _DEB9048 by D B, on Flickr

Richly sweet, vegetal, delicate, marvelous.
Last edited by debunix on Oct 23rd, '16, 12:13, edited 2 times in total.

Oct 23rd, '16, 01:27
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by Calton » Oct 23rd, '16, 01:27

debunix wrote:
and the first one I tried--Yakushima Hachinmanjyo Organic Green Tea--is teabags
.
Slight correction: it's "Hachimanjyu" (or possibly "Hachimanjū"). I think the kanji is 八万寿茶園.

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Oct 23rd, '16, 12:14
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by debunix » Oct 23rd, '16, 12:14

Calton wrote:
debunix wrote:
and the first one I tried--Yakushima Hachinmanjyo Organic Green Tea--is teabags
.
Slight correction: it's "Hachimanjyu" (or possibly "Hachimanjū"). I think the kanji is 八万寿茶園.
Fixed to match the spelling on the bags: I think your second correction is probably right, but will stick with the label for this use.

Oct 24th, '16, 23:10
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by Streak » Oct 24th, '16, 23:10

Revisiting Den's Gyokuro Kin tonight.

Lately I've been brewing this according to chingwa's (and victoria3's) suggested parameters, and it's much better! (Thanks, guys! : ) ) No noticeable bitterness. Just a mellow, slightly sweet, vegetal flavor. It even seems less astringent, although the astringency wasn't bad to begin with.

It probably doesn't hurt that I've been preheating the kyusu and keeping the brew times slightly shorter than I did the first time. The bright green tea liquor is so lovely; I wish my Yunnan greens looked like this.

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Oct 24th, '16, 23:48
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by victoria3 » Oct 24th, '16, 23:48

Streak wrote:Revisiting Den's Gyokuro Kin tonight.

Lately I've been brewing this according to chingwa's (and victoria3's) suggested parameters, and it's much better! (Thanks, guys! : ) ) No noticeable bitterness. Just a mellow, slightly sweet, vegetal flavor. It even seems less astringent, although the astringency wasn't bad to begin with.

It probably doesn't hurt that I've been preheating the kyusu and keeping the brew times slightly shorter than I did the first time. The bright green tea liquor is so lovely; I wish my Yunnan greens looked like this.
I'm glad the steeping parameters worked for you. I first tried Den's Gyokuro during an Otti that Chip set up; TeaChat OTTI 17- GYOKURO _AKA GY-OTTI 1- 2013. I miss those OTTI's they were great! Miss hearing from Chip too.

Today I had another round of O-Cha's Yutaka Midori 2013 (almost finished) still tasting great. After heating the water, and transferring between three vessels to cool down quickly, I tested the temperature with a thermometer and have found that if I put the last transfered water into a glass vessel I need to make sure to swirl the thermometer around to get an exact temperature. I also notice taste improves in both sencha and sinchas if I allow them to rest for a few minutes before trying.

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Oct 25th, '16, 00:02
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by john.b » Oct 25th, '16, 00:02

I had some of the last of a green tea from North Korea with breakfast today (Kangryong plantation), a tea I wrote about awhile back related to how hard it was to come by. It's essentially made in a similar style to Longjing, and the taste is different but not that far off.

I tend to not want to finish teas I get that are really interesting but there's no point in saving it, and aging isn't helping the tea (or degrading it much, really, given how long it's been around).

The main story with that tea was how they could produce it so far North, and of course the typical answer would be about starting from cold-resistant plant types and working it out from there. Since the internet sort of doesn't extend into North Korea Google search doesn't help explain that. A more skeptical person might wonder if they couldn't have just imported tea from China, since that would seem a lot easier, but apparently it's possible to visit where they make it. That's once you get past the issues of going there at all, which would involve escort by a licensed guide, probably from a company working out of China. The guide that turned up the tea for me--you absolutely can't order it online--was the one that brought Dennis Rodman there awhile back.

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Oct 25th, '16, 02:13
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by debunix » Oct 25th, '16, 02:13

Great tale to go with that tea!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Oct 25th, '16, 03:56
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by jayinhk » Oct 25th, '16, 03:56

That is a heck of a story! I wonder if I can snag some on Taobao? North Korean items are pretty popular on there.

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Oct 25th, '16, 18:21
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by chingwa » Oct 25th, '16, 18:21

@Streak Great! Glad to hear the recommendations are working for you! It always seems to me that instructions on labels are never to be taken seriously. In fact I never even read them anymore. :D

@victoria3 Aww what happened to Chip? What did I miss? :( And yes those OTTIs were wonderful.

@john.b Is that the rarest tea in the world? You got da connections man!

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Oct 25th, '16, 19:06
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by victoria3 » Oct 25th, '16, 19:06

@John B awesome series of connections between your inaccesible tea, the guide, Rodman and North Korea!

@Chingwa re:Chip, I'm not sure but maybe Chip is just taking a break after so many years. Miss him.

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Oct 26th, '16, 12:23
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Re: Official what GREEN are you currently drinking?

by hopeofdawn » Oct 26th, '16, 12:23

I'm currently working my way through the last of Bamboo Tips green tea from Tea Trekker. This tea is about 2 years old at this point, and has lost a lot of the' astringency it had when it was fresh (to the point that it was extremely difficult to brew correctly, which is probably why it's lasted so long), so I'm mostly using it as a daily drinker at work. I definitely need to refresh my green tea stock, though--I'm getting low!

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