煎茶 - 春 (Sencha - Haru)
Satsuma, Kagoshima, Japan
Stepping outside of our go-to Kyoto and Shizuoka Prefectures, we were lured by this unique recent single-farm offering from Mr. Yamaguchi in Satsuma city, Kagoshima. This tea is special in a number of ways. Firstly, it breaks the “proletariat" tag of many Kagoshima teas. On blind tasting, this tea exceeded expectations, excelling above several famed Kyoto contemporaries in freshness, cleanliness and balance. It is not nearly as prone to astringency or excessive marine flavour even on a second steep. Instead, it holds a lasting middle note of macadamia nut and baby spinach.
A limited 500kg total production of this recent 2016 late spring flush was produced by a single plantation (not a common practice with even many high grade sencha producers), lending it a level of exclusivity. Further, this is a newly developed farm, expected to have its full organic certification in 2 years time (though no pesticide or fertilisers were used in this offering, certification requires a minimum three-year track record).
Also worthy of note is that this is a Yabukita cultivar, originally developed in Shizuoka. This cultivar is not commonly used in Kagoshima. All these unique factors contribute to this tea’s intrigue.
Dry leaves: straight fine cuts with bright lime flecks
Liquor: light jade colour
Taste: baby spinach, macadamia, spring water
Process: non-oxidised, steamed then lightly fired
|1tbs/8g||70||0:25 x 2||1:10||N/A|