After trying ice-brewing again, I decided it wasn’t for me. Since I have so many teas at home I’d rather drink, this had the potential to become severely neglected. It’s definitely good enough that I didn’t want to toss the leaf, so I took it to work to see what I could do with it there.

Turns out the key to my appreciation for this tea lies in a much lower leaf-to-water ratio than is custom for gyokuro. I let the cup of dispenser hot water sit while I dive into these involved projects I’m working on and by the time I come up for a breather, the water has cooled to gyokuro brewing temperature or lower. Take a big pinch of leaf (3-4g) and let it steep for several minutes (a 2nd steep, too). The resulting cup effects my mood and work pace in a very beneficial way. I detect almost no bitterness and the low, deep, thick and rich umami is lightened enough that my body and tastebuds do not protest. With longer steeps, some eucalyptus and pineapple can come out in the aftertaste.

Flavors: Alkaline, Cheesecake, Eucalyptus, Fish Broth, Kale, Lima Beans, Marine, Pineapple, Seafood, Spinach, Thick, Umami

3 min, 0 sec 10 OZ / 295 ML

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Eventual tea farmer. If you are a tea grower, want to grow your own plants or are simply curious, please follow me so we can chat.

I most enjoy loose-leaf, unflavored teas and tisanes. Teabags have their place. Some of my favorite teas have a profound effect on mind and body rather than having a specific flavor profile. Terpene fiend.

Favorite teas generally come from China (all provinces), Taiwan, India (Nilgiri and Manipur). Frequently enjoyed though less sipped are teas from Georgia, Japan, Nepal and Darjeeling. While I’m not actively on the hunt, a goal of mine is to try tea from every country that makes it available to the North American market. This is to gain a vague understanding of how Camellia sinensis performs in different climates. I realize that borders are arbitrary and some countries are huge with many climates and tea-growing regions.

I’m convinced European countries make the best herbal teas.

Personal Rating Scale:

100-90: A tea I can lose myself into. Something about it makes me slow down and appreciate not only the tea but all of life or a moment in time. If it’s a bagged or herbal tea, it’s of standout quality in comparison to similar items.

89-80: Fits my profile well enough to buy again.

79-70: Not a preferred tea. I might buy more or try a different harvest. Would gladly have a cup if offered.

69-60: Not necessarily a bad tea but one that I won’t buy again. Would have a cup if offered.

59-1: Lacking several elements, strangely clunky, possess off flavors/aroma/texture or something about it makes me not want to finish.

Unrated: Haven’t made up my mind or some other reason. If it’s pu’er, I likely think it needs more age.

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