Monday, February 21, 2011

O-cha's Oku Yutaka Sencha

After being terribly busy for about a month, the dust has settled and my blog can begin again.  I love starting back up with a fresh mind, fresh spirit, and so on.

Today’s tea is more sencha.  A fellow teachatter, Mosshorn, sent me a sample of this in mid january, along with a good number of other different teas.

This isn’t quite deep steamed, nor is it purely medium steamed; it’s both!  Yes, long leaves and small dusty bits are in good proportion with this one.  Let’s see what we get.

I used a little over 3 grams of leaf in my Banko Kyusu, brewing only one 3 ounce cup at a time.  8, flash, 5, 3, 17.

The first cup, brewed at a relatively cool 140 degrees, came out more like a light steamed tea, with a light, vegetal sweetness and plenty of that fruit flavor and a sensation that reminds me of what some might call Qi.  Plenty of sugar snap peas and a light melon flavor too.

Cup two was still leaning more towards the light steamed side of sencha, but now with a  thicker body and solid umami that leaned toward the deep-steamed teas.  Plentiful herbal notes and what I could only describe as “bold plantiness”.  If I ever go into politics, I’m confident I can win, especially with bland, pedestrian descriptions such as the one above.  Green Poet for Guv’nor!

By the third cup, the flavors had moved into more familiar territory:  Cucumbers, Melons and Melon Rinds, along with a nice, low sweetness.  Cooler cups had a fleeting essence of peppermint along with a slight bitterness creeping around in my throat.

Cups four and five were mild, sweet, and lettuce-flavored, along with the ghosts of previous infusions. 

Overall, the Oku Yutaka had some pleasant flavors but lacked the smoothness I expect from a decent sencha.  Other brews with this stuff using different parameters gave very similar results.  Definitely give it a sample before committing, as with all teas.

Thanks for reading guys and gals.  See ya here, same green tea time, same green tea place.

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