Japanese Supersencha Kamakura

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From Upton Tea

This is a very high-grade, organic Japanese sencha.

This tea, when brewed, is a cloudy bright green color, although significantly less opaque than matcha. The aroma is very strong, and planty and fishy like a sencha. It also has a lot of the grassy quality that good lung ching / dragonwell green tea has. The tea is bitter and crisp, almost but not quite to the point of being sharp. Compared to a typical sencha, there is less bitterness, less of the biting quality, and more complexity, especially of the grassy tones.

The brewing instructions are a good rough starting point, but I would recommend deviating from them a lot. For one, I would recommend using less tea. The leaves are very fine and when using even a single teaspoon of the leaves (as instructed) for a cup, it comes out too bitter and strong for my tastes. Also, if you are going to go for brewing multiple cups of this one from the same leaves (and these leaves are very flavorful and can hold up well to multiple brewings), I would recommend a short (2 min. or less) brew for the first cup and longer ones for subsequent cups--otherwise the subsequent cups will be bland and watery. Some people might even like a short (30 sec.) brew of this one, and discard it...then followed by a 3+ min. brew. This eliminates much of the bitterness (and caffeine) and brings out the subtleties.

Bottom line? Sencha is not my favorite kind of tea, but this is by far the best sencha I have tried, so it does live up to its name. Is it worth the premium price? I don't really think so, but perhaps some true connoisseurs would disagree with me. If I am going to spend this much money I'd go for one of the higher-end oolongs. There are green teas I like better than this one that are much cheaper.


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