24 Tasting Notes
I was experimenting with the steep time today, since the last time I brewed this, I steeped for about half as long as the company recommends (2 min vs 4). Today I went with 3 min, same tea-to-water ratio. I think I like the 2 min steep better. This was still excellent, but there is definitely more astringency.
Trying the Kukicha again – This time with less loose tea, although I kept the steep time and temperature about the same. (A little cooler, because I was distracted.)
Again, I am in love with the fragrance of this tea, both loose and steeped. It reminds me of Gyokuro- rich and fresh and creamy. The flavor was also much better with less loose tea. This steep completely lacked the bitterness that I had noticed the first time I made it. It’s smooth and has a subtle richness to it. Definitely a new favorite.
I also did a cold resteep for 2 hours, and it was excellent. Very sweet and delicate.
The fragrance of this tea is delightful – The dry leaves smell rich, fresh, and sweet, and the richness is enhanced in the scent of the leaves once steeped. The mixture includes stems in addition to the leaves, which is interesting.
The flavor of the tea is rich and buttery, with light hints of bitterness. I followed their recommendation for the amount of dry tea to use – they recommend using 3 times the amount of dry tea per cup compared to most of the other green teas I have seen and tried (1Tbsp vs 1 tsp- maybe because there are also stems in there?). This resulted in a very strong flavor. They also recommend brewing longer and at a higher temperature than I usually have success with for green teas. (Their recommendation on the box is 3 minutes at 185.) I ignored their suggestions for steep time and temperature, going cooler and shorter, but I think and even shorter steep may be beneficial. I think I may experiment with using less tea than they recommend, and significantly less steeping time in the future.
That may also help bring the price per cup down, which was a concern for me. The 50g packet was about $17, which wouldn’t be too bad at 1 tsp per cup, but is a bit much if you follow their recommendation of 1 Tbsp per cup.
Overall, I think this tea is worthy of experimenting with for now, as the flavor and fragrance suggest potential. But I will hold off on making any recommendations until I’ve spent some time figuring out my preferred brewing method.
I tried this tea for the first time this evening. The first thing that I noticed is that the dry leaves were very natural looking – fairly large, with some unevenness in size. They had a light oceanic scent to them as well.
I did a short steep to start, since the sample packet I had did not include brewing suggestions, and I wasn’t sure what to expect. So I went with 1 minute, with water at 175F. I think it could have taken a longer steep, maybe 2 min to start with, as the leaves did not fully unfurl and rehydrate in that amount of time.
The flavor was mellow, with a hint of ocean to it. Smooth, with no astringency or bitterness.
Re-steeped, with the same time as temperature as the first brew – similar in flavor, and still no bitterness!