Friday, April 21, 2023

Tea Review: Saemidori Fukamushi Sencha (Charaku)

Saemidori Fukamushi Sencha (2021)
Type: Green
Origin: Japan, Kagoshima Prefecture, Ei
Product Description: 
Fukamushi (literally "deep steamed") teas are steamed for a longer period of time than usual during the initial processing to arrest oxidation. The result is a tea with lower astringency, caffeine content, and a darker color. This JAS Organic Saemidori varietal infuses to a nice medium green color, with a mild marine air aroma. The tea is very smooth with good body, and a good balance of mostly amami (sweetness) and a slight finish of shibumi (astringency.)

The town of Ei, in the former county of Ibusuki in southern Kagoshima Prefecture, was combined with the towns of Chiran and Kawanabe in 2007 to make the new city of Minamikyushu. All three towns are noted tea growing regions, but Ei Sencha has often been compared to Gyokuro for the tea's reputation of being smooth and mellow.
Temperature: 175° F
Amount: 3 grams
Steeping Time: 10 seconds - 1 minute

The dry leaves have a sweet and nutty aroma with marine green notes.

The pale green infusion has a sweet and savory aroma with notes of butter, nuts, and a hint of green.  The taste is savory and nutty with something that reminded me faintly of popcorn with a light savory-green finish.

For the purpose of this tasting, I brewed the first infusion for 1 minute, the second for 30 seconds, and the third for 10 seconds.  The first infusion was umami-filled and so delicious that I almost forgot to take notes.  I found that cutting the steeping time in half helped carry the umami notes forward in the second infusion which was thick and savory with a hint of astringency and a refreshingly sweet green finish.  An even shorter steeping time for the third infusion brought out more sweetness in aroma and flavor while continuing to produce nutty and savory notes with more flavorful infusions to look forward to.

This tea review was originally written in September 2021. This tea was purchased by me.

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