Mid May in Japan. Right about now is when tea farmers are busy packing and shipping out the very first green tea harvest of the year. Many wait an entire year to try this first flush tea — shincha. How could they not? The lack of any bitter notes, the undeniable umami, and all the nutrients that the tea bushes have been storing up all winter long. Shincha is well worth the wait! (Read more)
Today Japanese teas are renowned around the world for their fresh, grassy taste, and unmistakable umami. Because of these favorable qualities, Japanese tea also requires extra care when storing. (Read more)
Let's take an in-depth look at matcha vs. green tea. Yes, technically matcha is stone-ground powdered green tea. But we cannot take the green tea leaves we have sitting in our cupboard and grind those up. Matcha tea processing is a complex tradition that is hundreds, even thousands, years old. The amount of people who know how to process matcha vs. those who process other types of green tea is quite limited. Even the tea leaves used for preparing the powder require special growth conditions. So let's discuss what makes both matcha powder and Japanese green tea so unique in their own way.(Read more)
Every cultivar is unique because it posses its own color, flavor profile, and aroma. Some cultivars are specially cultivated to resist certain plant illnesses and pests that predominate certain areas more than others. (Read more)
If you are a fan of Japanese teas you’ve probably heard, tried, or been recommended to try Gyokuro. So what makes Gyokuro so special?
I must make a confession: incidentally, Gyokuro was the first Japanese tea I’ve ever tried. This was many years back. I went into a tea shop, asked for the staffs’ recommendation and whether I could smell a few different varieties.
After getting a whiff of Gyokuro I had to look no further to what tea I would be trying that day... (Read more)