When I received my generous free samples from Herbal Infusions in the mail yesterday, all I’ve been able to think about is this genmaicha. I requested this sample just because I’ve never had genmaicha and since I am a cautious tea buyer (I want to know that I at least enjoy that particular type of tea before purchasing it) I figured this would be a good way to try it for the first time. I have high hopes for this because I tend to like the toasty notes I have experienced in tea and have liked all the Japanese greens I have tried thus far. In my experience, however limited, Chinese greens are way too vegetal for me and Japanese greens tend to be sweeter, grassy, and sometimes buttery smooth. Although after reading through tasting notes on Steepster, it seems that the general consensus opposite of what my tastings have been in relation to taste of Chinese vs. Japanese greens.
Anyway, enough rambling, on to this actual tea. I have to say that the dry leaf is very cute with the little popcorn like pieces. The dry scent was mostly toasty..which is to be expected I suppose. The sample was slightly under the 2 teaspoons that I usually use when making tea, but it was close enough that I used my normal amount of water. After steeping, I’m a bit concerned about this burnt popcorn scent I am getting. I don’t mind the scent and it isn’t a total deal breaker or anything, but I am afraid that the burnt aspect is going to carry over to the taste. This is actually pretty good. The taste begins as a great, not grassy, slightly sweet and almost buttery green. It then morphs between a toasted quality and slightly burnt popcorn (in a good, tasty way). It is almost a meal by itself but I am having it with lunch. I will make my final decision after I see how this tastes at 2nd and possibly 3rd steeps, but I think that I DO like genmaicha and would be interested to see how other companies’ versions stack up against this initial experience.
On a side note: When creating this tea entry here on Steepster, for some reason it made 2 separate entries…sorry.