Gyokuro Matsu No Tsukasa
Considered the finest green tea from Japan. What makes Gyokuro so special is how it is grown. During the first flush, the bushes are shaded from the hot sun with straw mats for around 20 days cutting the sunlight by around 80% so the young light-deprived leaves develop a vivid green colour. This means they are rich in chlorophyll, low in tannin and high in amino acids (particularly L-theanine) – and the key point of the science is that this gives the tea an unparalleled smooth, rich mouthfeel and the characteristic sweet notes. Once plucked – and unusually for Japan, the leaves are hand-picked, the Gyokuro is lightly steamed , then rolled, twisted and dried.
Gyokuro is not an everyday tea, taken to quench your thirst. It needs to be prepared with care and appreciated slowly from a small, delicate cup. Let the tea roll around your mouth as the liquor should have a slightly thick mouthfeel, coating every part of your mouth and tongue.
The tea has an amazing sweetness, with buttery, fresh, green, vegetal notes and it carries a long, lingering aftertaste. Full of that Japanese expression ‘umami’ which is the ultimate moreish flavour.
Origin: Wazuka, Uji, Japan
Tea Farm: Shohokuen. The Sugimoto family have been producing tea since 1645 and in 1915 were the appointed supplier to Japan’s Imperial Court.
Leaf Appearance: Dark green leaves
Aroma: Delicate green bean, cut-grass notes
Liquor: Vibrant emerald green
Tasting Notes: A liquor that coats the mouth and tongue, giving a thick, buttery feel that leaves a long-lasting umami flavour
Quick Brewing Instructions:
Very important to brew cool. Use around 3g of tea per cup (200ml) and brew no hotter than 60°C (140°F). Steep for 2-3 minutes and infuse several times.