This sencha is one of the loose tea samples included in Den’s Tea’s Green Tea Novice sampler. The dry leaves are lovely to look at – shiny, dark green needles of tea that have a full, savory sort of smell with hints of nuttiness. When I took the leaves out after they’d steeped they looked almost like pieces of fresh leaves that had been picked today.
The colour of the tea is a vivid lemon-yellow hue despite having a fairly short steeping time. The tea itself hovers somewhere between the grassiness of matcha and the flavour of cooked vegetables. It has a distinct savory undertone to it – I think someone else called it umami and I agree with that. There’s also a bitter tang on the end of each sip that leaves a bit of a sour aftertaste in the mouth. Nothing too horrible though, and the other attributes of the tea more or less make up for it in my opinion.
I’ve not had much experience with authentic, good-quality Japanese teas, but within my limited experience I can say that I think this is an excellent sencha and something that I might consider buying a full bag of one day.