Saturday, December 3, 2022

Tea Review: Naturally Grown Kyobancha (Yunomi/Tea Farmer Shinichi Kihara)

Naturally Grown Kyobancha 京番茶
Tea Farmer Shinichi Kihara/Yunomi
Type: Green
Origin: Japan, Kyoto, Wazuka Village
Product Description:
Unique to the city of Kyoto from which it gets name, Kyobancha is harvested from tea leaves and twigs that have matured over the winter months and then roasted producing a very woodsy flavor.

Often called 'bancha for babies' (akachan bancha 赤ちゃん番茶) because it has almost no caffeine, it is also called 'spring bancha' (haru bancha 春番茶) because it is harvested in March from winter matured leaves. Rarely offered outside of Japan, it is even quite rare to find it in supermarkets in Japan as well.

Shinichi Kihara's Kyobancha gives off a smoky aroma, but surprises you with a flavor that is both smoky as well as sweet.
Temperature: 175° F
Amount: 3 grams
Steeping Time: 1-2 minutes

The dry leaves have a lightly smoky aroma with notes of roasted nuts and autumn leaves.

The liquor is pale peach yellow and the aroma is sweet and peppery with notes of roasted nuts and a hint of caramelized sugar.  The taste has notes of roasted nuts and a sweet, nutty finish.

I steeped the first two infusions of this tea for 1 minute and the third for 2 minutes with good results throughout.  The second infusion deepened in color and flavor.  This tea was light and refreshing with a flavor and aroma that had me thinking fondly of the roasted chestnut stand opening for the winter season.
This tea was purchased by me.

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