I quietly sit with my Saturday morning cuppa and gaze out my window at the gorgeous colors bursting across the New England landscape. The rich autumn palette has inspired me to reach for a tea with a deeply colored leaf, a Japanese green called Gyokuro Kamakura, a precious gift from a colleague.
The Japanese word Gyokuro translates in English to “pearl dew” or “jewel dew” which in my mind conjures up images of a delicate sunrise over misty fields of tea bushes. Approximately 3 weeks before the leaves are ready for plucking, the bushes are covered with a dark cloth or straw. This covering results in the harvest of a darker green, silky leaf with a slightly higher caffeine content.
The aroma reminds me of freshly cut grass and the spring green liquor is richly vegetal with a tang which wakes up my tongue. The tea packet is created with beautifully textured and colored Japanese paper. I believe that the bottom symbol is the Japanese character for tea. If the spirit ever moved me to get a tattoo, this is what I would choose. I love Japanese kanji characters for their artful quality but especially for how they tell a story about a word or phrase.
What is your experience with Japanese tea?