Saturday Morning Tea

JapaneseKuomiDry061309

Green, green, green. After a week of cool, rainy spring days, the world outside is resplendent in a cloak of velvety green shades.

Do you find that the weather influences your choice of tea? I do. Darker, more full-bodied teas when it’s chilly and lighter, more delicate teas for those warm, light filled days.

The green world is definitely affecting my choice of tea this morning, a Japanese Sencha called “Koumi”. Grown in the Uji region of Kyoto prefecture in Japan, its dark green, glossy leaves have been lightly steamed during processing to halt oxidation.

JapaneseKuomiSteep061309

In the mid 1300s, Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimitsu promoted the cultivation and production of high quality green tea in Uji. The Tsuen Tea Shop, located by the Uji bridge, is reputed to be the oldest tea shop in all of Japan, with the first “Tsuen” serving tea to weary travelers in 1160.

TsuenTeaShop

I steeped the tea leaves for 2 1/2 minutes in 160 degree F water. It’s amazing how green the leaves are, especially after steeping.

JapaneseKuomiWet061309

The steeped liquor is a beautiful spring green with an aroma of freshly steamed asparagus.

JapaneseKuomiTeabowl061309

The flavor is delicate and smooth with light corn notes. I’ve read that one of the health benefits of green tea is the ability of the polyphenols to inhibit plaque and bacterial growth in your mouth. With its clean, refreshing taste and mouth feel, I can certainly believe that.

In contrast to last weekend, this weekend will be a lazy, hazy one spent puttering around the abode. Its time to take stock of all of the art projects I’ve got started and set some priorities for finishing them!

I wonder what it would be like to live in a world

where it was always June.

~L.M. Montgomery

Advertisements