Origin: Uji, Japan
Vendor: Hibiki-an (Product page)
Price: $15.00 (40g)
It's been a while since I posted any notes about sencha, so here goes. I just got this tea today, so I don't have a lot of experience with it, but I liked it enough the first time around to write about it.
The dry leaf is, well, fukamushi. It doesn't look pretty. This is just a result of the deeper steaming, though, so it's nothing to worry about. The aroma is a bit grassy, vegetal, and "marine." Mmmm!
I brewed this with more leaf than I would normally, on Chip's recommendation. I used 5.7g leaf (There wasn't much thought involved in picking this number, by the way, it's just what looked good at the time) and 200mL of 165-170°F water, and steeped for 60s, 30s, 50s, and 90s.
The liquor brews to be a lovely emerald color, even without the help of the cloudiness, which sets in starting with the second infusion. The flavor is sweet and candy-like, though frankly it was a bit weak considering the amount of leaf I used&mdash perhaps a higher temperature would help that. There is a touch of astringency, but that is likely a result of my own brewing and not the tea's fault. The second infusion especially had a rich umami goodness, which made the tea feel quite robust in the mouth. One of the things I like about this tea is that it is more "active" than other senchas, in that it leaves a coolness in the throat and a pleasant oily sensation on the tongue. This does happen in some other senchas, but not usually this much.
By the fourth infusion, it started to get a bit watery. If you bumped up the temperature this tea could probably keep going, but I doubt it would be much longer. Anyway, I very much recommend trying this tea. It's not an everyday drinker at the price of 15 clams for 40g, but it's a nice treat.
[Also, I just added a new wallpaper of that fine-lookin' kyūsu to the Wallpapers section. Enjoy!]