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As I have been able to acquire some decent tea making equipment during the last month, I have also had the opportunity to make “better” tea, knowing the exact water temperature and not using bad tap water.

One usually says that water is the tea’s blood, and I think this is especially true for sencha and gyokuro teas. The tea today, torooricha, is one of the teas I have been experimenting various brewing methods on a lot since September. The tea is a stronger sencha and is supposed to have a more concentrated and rich taste than a normal sencha would. Testing a lot of different recommendations from different Japanese people and shops, the result was, well – various.

Making the tea now with better water and knowing what temperature the water had, made the result incredibly different. This time I also had in mind the wonderful saying Rob Yaple quoted in one of his tasting notes:

“The first cup is strong like love, the second bitter as life, and the third sweet like death.”

And indeed they were. The first cup had a rich a strong flavor that remained for quite a while in my mouth after drinking it.

The second cup was bitter, but not so bitter as I feared. It might be that since the tea is made to strong and rich in taste, the second bitterness was then a bit overshadowed by this taste. And surprisingly enough, apart from the vegetal taste the presence of citrus was also very dominant. A most pleasant and delicious surprise indeed, but it made me really worried about whether or not the last cup would be sweet at all.

However, the third cup actually held a good amount of sweetness in it! Not on the level of gyokuro of course, but enough so that its presence could in no way be ignored. A wonderful end to a series of different tastes.

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 1 min, 0 sec
Shinobi_cha

I’ve never heard of this! What does ‘torooricha’ mean, and how do they process it differently to make it so strong?

Shadowleaf

That is a really good question. I unfortunately heard just a tiny bit from the store clerk.

After doing some researching and consulting with a Japanese friend of mine, however, we have come to this conclusion: The tea’s name means ‘viscous tea’ and is produced from shincha grade fukamushi sencha, but made in a way so that it will be a bit more starchy in the cup.

That is probably why the bitterness was not so strong after the second steeping, I think.

Shinobi_cha

That makes sense that some kind of fukamushi shincha would be quite strong. It is so interesting to learn about teas only found in Japan!

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Shinobi_cha

I’ve never heard of this! What does ‘torooricha’ mean, and how do they process it differently to make it so strong?

Shadowleaf

That is a really good question. I unfortunately heard just a tiny bit from the store clerk.

After doing some researching and consulting with a Japanese friend of mine, however, we have come to this conclusion: The tea’s name means ‘viscous tea’ and is produced from shincha grade fukamushi sencha, but made in a way so that it will be a bit more starchy in the cup.

That is probably why the bitterness was not so strong after the second steeping, I think.

Shinobi_cha

That makes sense that some kind of fukamushi shincha would be quite strong. It is so interesting to learn about teas only found in Japan!

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Tea grew to be one of my major hobbies for about two years ago, and I have been able to taste a lot of different brands. Unfortunately, most of the local stores I use and the ones I encountered while in Japan, are not registered here yet, but I will do my best to register them – in time.

As I once again will be having the honour of staying in Japan for about one year from September 2010, I would like to keep track of the teas I discover, the names, taste and so on.

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Norway

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