Good morning, dear tea friends! As the wind howls outside my windows, I dream of spring and those thoughts have led me to my morning tea – a Japanese green tea called Spring Harvest Sencha. This tea is a rare treat as a tea of this high grade is usually not exported outside of Japan.
As the name suggests, it is a spring harvest, like a first flush Darjeeling. The most well known Japanese green tea is Sencha, which is harvested after Shincha, the very first tea of the spring. With each subsequent harvest, the tea becomes stronger and darker with leaves of lesser quality and price. The exceptional quality of this tea shows that it was an earlier harvest.
Japanese teas are recognizable by their grassy, needle-like shape. The shape is attained by sending the leaf through a series of rolling machines. Paddles move the tea back and forth over metal ridges while heat is applied so the leaf is slowly formed into its needle shape.
I steeped the leaf for 2 minutes in 175 degree F water. Some Japanese tea lovers will use a lower temp and steeping time when preparing their tea. I have found that this works best for my taste.
The tea liquor is a pale spring green with a delicate vegetal aroma. The flavor is quite sweet and light with only a whisper of a vegetal note. I usually find Japanese green teas to be much more vegetal tasting than this tea is.
This tea allows me to show off my new Cherry Blossom mug, a wonderful birthday gift from my lovely daughter. It came with a ceramic infuser basket but I don’t really see myself using that basket as the holes are much too large.
I’ve been fighting off a virus this week, which has left me feeling tired and washed out. I feel refreshed and rejuvenated after several cups of this wonderful tea.
As always, thanks for stopping by and sharing a cuppa with me!
“If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome.”