OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

"Official Tea Tasting Initiative" Teas shared & discussed.

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Dec 4th, '10, 18:19
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by Drax » Dec 4th, '10, 18:19

Currently brewing up some A3 in my Tempest. I am literally creating a storm of my own, as I guzzle down this asamushi. It is excellent!

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Dec 5th, '10, 09:18
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by Stentor » Dec 5th, '10, 09:18

A4: Sencha Premier, Adagio
2.4 g, 3 oz water


1st, 65° C, 90 seconds
Somewhat mild, vegetal, almost no astringency, some sweetness in the aftertaste. Very enjoyable. I don‘t think I‘ve had a better first infusion with any of the other asamushi samples.

2nd, 70° C, 40 seconds
I found this to be similar to the first infusion.
I've found this to be one of the differences between asamushi and fukamushi.
With fukamushi, you usually have a huge difference in taste and intensity between the first and the second infusion, with the second infusion being more intense in almost all respects. With asamushi, there seems to be a more subtle difference. Do you agree?
Compared to the first infusion, I'd say this one is slightly sweeter and with a little more astringency. This is good tea!

3rd, 73° C, 60 seconds
Noticeably milder with the vegetal tastes pronounced. Only a hint of sweetness left.

4th, 79° C, 120 seconds
Still very nice, I am sure this one can go beyond the fourth infusion.


Overall this tea leaves a very good impression. I would certainly consider buying this.

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Dec 8th, '10, 14:26
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by entropyembrace » Dec 8th, '10, 14:26

Finished off all the OTTI samples yesterday...had saved the shuppin for last...was refreshing light and veggie....was thinking it would be perfect on a hot summer day. Maybe I will try next years in the summer :)

going to summarize and rate out of 10...10 being best :)

Asa lineup

1) Shin-ryoku from Den's - 9

really liked this one...marine, veggie and astringent

2) Hachiju-hachiya from Maiko - 6

nothing offensive, nothing stood out either

3)Maruyama from Maiko - 10

Very tasty sencha with marine character!

4) Sencha Premier from Adagio - 8

nice and sweet, easy to handle :)

5) "Togei" - 2

very grassy...don´t like grassy

Shuppin from Maiko - 10

light and refreshing

Fuka lineup

1) Yame Fukamushi from Den's - 6

sweet and sour but for some reason was a bit boring

2) Fuji Super Premium from Zencha - 10

sweet marine/seaweed very tasty

3) Fuga Super Premium from Zencha - 10

very veggie and herbal

4) Miyabi from O-Cha. - 9

sweet and sour and veggie

5) Hatsumi from O-Cha - 9

yummy sweet and soupy!

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Dec 8th, '10, 15:30
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by Marco » Dec 8th, '10, 15:30

Stentor wrote:Marco, you said you got a lot of umami from the third infusion of Fuji Super Premium. I will try the Fuji Super Premium again to see if I can find out what umami is in the third infusion. So thanks for the hint ;)
What I got a lot from the Fuji Super Premium in my first tasting was sort of a spinach and salmon taste (in a good way). It really made me think of a rice with spinach and salmon dish that I make every once in a while. Is that it?

Did you get it again? - I didn't know what umami is either. But I think now I do. :) - I even wondered that it is acknowledged in our culture as the fifth flavour - I didn't learn that in school.
I agree with entropy that it could be the salmon taste you sense. Umami is what we call savoury so that what makes it taste intense :)

Stentor wrote:I think this is more of a tea to sit down and take some time with rather than to just have a cup sitting on your desk to sip from casually. A nice tea to have with company who aren‘t used to drinking green tea for sure.
...but LOL, I‘m not exactly describing the taste here, am I? :)

Go on with that. I think describing your feelings is exactly what it is about describing the taste you get. I am not always to good in this, but I like reading taste notes that have soul.

My week started with.

F4 Miyabi from O-Cha
The dry tea has a lot of little bits. It has a great smell that fills the room.
1st has been sweet and already had some umami. It was kind of "whow" - the best first infusion I ever hat with senchas.
2nd great smell - you have to smell the wet leaves - makes me dream. There is even more umami and nice sweetness in the finish.
3rd has been like the 2nd - didn't get weaker.
4th and 5th still hold the power of this tea but are definitely weaker than the 3rd.
6th still had a gentle sweetness.
And my 7th infusion only gave me some coloured water.

A4 Sencha Premier from Adagio
Some really big needles.
1st tasted like some fresh grass with a decent sweetness.
2nd has been about the 1st and the 3rd one was more intense and more grassy.
4th and 5th getting weaker.

Kind of an unfair duel. The Miyabi is such a great tea. It had me from the beginning on. Opening the bag, taking a deep breath and I have been hit by it.
The Sencha Premier is a nice and easy tea, but it has no nuances. Exactly the same from the first brew on.


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Dec 8th, '10, 22:12
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by Chip » Dec 8th, '10, 22:12

Awesome reviews/comments everyone! Really enjoying reading them so much so, that I realized I have not commented yet myself. I try to allow others to post comments before I do. :idea: :mrgreen: :!:

This has been a very interesting dueling OTTIs. I hope everyone has enjoyed it so far!

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Dec 9th, '10, 09:07
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by Stentor » Dec 9th, '10, 09:07

F4: Miyabi, O-Cha


Brewing parameters
1:1 ratio (g of leaf to oz of water)
1st, 68° C, 40 seconds (I carelessly did 40 seconds like with most fukamushi. It‘s actually better when you do 60 seconds with this one!)
2nd, 73° C, 15 seconds
3rd, 78° C, 30 seconds
4th, 83° C, 90 seconds


I've had this before and it is probably my favorite at the moment. I've had quite a few other sencha including others from O-Cha and the ones from this OTTI of course and I probably enjoy the Miyabi the most. So I was not entirely impartial going into this OTTI.

The taste is sort of mild, rather sweet with a hint of vegetables (but not as pronounced as Sae Midori sencha for instance). There's just the right amount of bitterness and a little astringency. There's also a very slight "buttery" taste but not too much. All in all, a lovely composition.
The second infusion really brings out kind of a fruitiness that the strong aroma of the dry leaf already hinted at.
With subsequent infusions, the taste will get milder and astringency will increase, as usual.

Anyway, I rate this 5 out of 5 and highly recommend it, even (or maybe especially) to those new to sencha.


After 4 infusions, I found some small brown leaves and particles, which I don't think are supposed to be there. I haven't had many sencha which contained brown particles, so I assume it's not normal.
Not all is perfect, I guess. It's really great tea, though, like I said, so it didn't affect taste negatively.
Maybe someone more experienced can chime in on what are signs of quality leaf and what are signs of lesser quality. I've just gone by what seems logical so far.

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Dec 9th, '10, 18:25
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by TubbyCow » Dec 9th, '10, 18:25

This Maiko Maruyama is rocking my world right now. Sweet and smooth and vegetal and incredible. Normally I'm a Fuka kind of gal, but this I would happily lay down the coin for this asa. It's my favourite so far.

So a point to asamushi, and a point to OTTI for giving me an incredible experience!

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Dec 10th, '10, 01:32
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by entropyembrace » Dec 10th, '10, 01:32

btw....this OTTI is really making me want a smaller kyusu! :shock:

I only had 1 go with each sample :(

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Dec 10th, '10, 19:54
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by iannon » Dec 10th, '10, 19:54

entropyembrace wrote:btw....this OTTI is really making me want a smaller kyusu! :shock:

I only had 1 go with each sample :(

ha ha! coming around to the smaller steeps are we?

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Dec 10th, '10, 21:49
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by entropyembrace » Dec 10th, '10, 21:49

iannon wrote:
entropyembrace wrote:btw....this OTTI is really making me want a smaller kyusu! :shock:

I only had 1 go with each sample :(

ha ha! coming around to the smaller steeps are we?

a least when I don´t have very much sencha to fill my big pot with :lol:

with oolong and puerh totally different story since they last for so many infusions.

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Dec 10th, '10, 22:05
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by tortoise » Dec 10th, '10, 22:05

MIYABI!! oh, uhm yes and,,,Miyabi, that's right :lol: :lol: :lol:
slurp, uhm, hah! uhhhh, sure, more? yes, uh :D :lol: ...

:mrgreen: Miyabi :mrgreen:

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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by Stentor » Dec 11th, '10, 07:38

Having Den's Shin-ryoku (A1) right now, which I think is excellent! Very sweet, leaning more towards fruit than vegetable if that makes sense.

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Dec 12th, '10, 00:35
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by gargoylekitty » Dec 12th, '10, 00:35

Finished first round of all of them, not sure I feel strongly enough about any of the fukas to say much right now aside from Miyabi being my top one, and have gotten around to a second session with a few.

Adagio's Sencha Premier was definitely better the second time around. There was this nice bitterness mixed with this other taste I can't quite place, a little nutty maybe, in the second steep. Not sure that moves it up any places in my book though as the others were all pretty nice as well.

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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by laura99 » Dec 12th, '10, 11:51

Finished my second round on the Asa OTTI yesterday. Here they are in my order of preference. Adagio's offering surprised me as I have not had much luck with greens from them. The Togei is at the bottom, but was so different its hard to compare them with the rest.

Maruyama from Maiko
Sencha Premier from Adagio
Shin-ryoku from Den's
Hachiju-hachiya from Maiko

I started off buying Japanese teas for real early this year with my first round of Shincha's. At the time, I did not even know the terms Fuka and Asa. Ended up all the teas I purchased were Fuka, which I enjoyed very much (including the Miyabi in the Fuka OTTI which I highly recommend). So this OTTI was a great experience for me. There will be an Asa Sencha in my next order to round of my selection for sure!

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Dec 12th, '10, 13:10
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Re: OTTI 7 & 8, Asa/Fuka Mushi Duel

by Marco » Dec 12th, '10, 13:10

And the fifth round happened this weekend.
The contestants:
F5 Hatsumi from O-Cha
little bits of leave again
1st infusion was already strong - a surprise for me. Should try a shorter steeping time. It is very veggie.
2nd had a nice green look and even greener taste. Very veggie and strong again.
3rd and 4th are getting lighter and have a sweet aftertaste.
5th to 8th are very light to just a hint of sweetness.
I think 5 or 6 infusions are enough.

A5 "Togei"
Yes this one is really different. Even the big leaves look different than the other ones. And it smells and tastes of spinach.
1st has a lot of this spinachy taste and is really fresh.
2nd fresh somehow light and spinachy.
3rd a lot of veggieness and really fresh taste.
4th strong veggie taste and a light astringency.
5th to 7th getting lighter.

The Hatsumi is a nice tea and very strong. It has a lot of power and lasts long. The Togei is really different, but not really my kind of tea.

All in all I think I prefer Fukamushi.
The Myabi is the absolute winner for me. Great tea. The other Fukas are all nice by itself.
The Maruyama is an Asamushi that could convince me. I enjoyed its smell and its great look. Absolute winner in the Asa category.

Now I have some tea left for a second duel :)

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