Years ago I purchased Yamamotoyama’s Genmai Cha from Stash Tea and I did not like it. It was horrible-I couldn’t drink it and returned it. It is the only tea I have ever returned to a company, & looking back on it I wish I would have kept it. I also wish I would have brewed it properly. I used boiling water…ssttrriiiikkke one! I steeped it at LEAST 3 minutes…..ssssttttrriiiike two!! I probably used too much tea and failed to experiment with different water temps and steep times…..sssttttrrriiikkkeee three!!! I was so bush league back then-a mere amateur.
Finally I bought this sample from Harney & Sons and had a completely different experience. Enter glass tea press and Genmaicha tea. Open packet, sssnnniiifff deeply, and enjoy the deep, nutty aroma. Steep parameters below are for first infusion, filled with 8 oz filtered water. What a nice medium deep, yellow liqueur-perhaps not as clear as that of the Buckwheat tea. Nutty aroma very present in the wet leaves as well as the cup, lingering on the palate. The second cup-approx. 195* for 1:15- was the strongest (not bitter), very nutty with a natural sweetness. They don’t call this tea popcorn tea for nothing, and I find that to be accurate. My last steep at 205* for 2 minutes was weaker, but still exhibited good nutty sweet characteristics.
I thoroughly enjoyed this tea, but the second cup was almost too nutty for me….and I’m CRAZY! :)) I would drink this occasionally, perhaps with a meal, and try lower temps and steep times. I wish I had more Genmai Cha….oh wait…I DO! Anna sent me a sample. Wish granted! :))
Until we Genmai Cha Cha Cha again.
Cupped Mon/Tue, Oct 24-25, 2011. Reviewed Thu, Nov 17, 2011.