Another sample from teabento! So this is a little different from the sencha that I’m accustomed to drinking, and definitely brewed up faster than I expected. As someone who plays it a bit fast and loose with steeping parameters – if pretty much always by accident – I was sure I hadn’t left this to sit long enough. Imagine my surprise to find a wide range of flavors unfurling on my tongue with that first sip. The infusion is a nice green/yellow color, and while Teabento’s website advises a fine strainer when brewing this Yame sencha, I’m still amused how much leaf sediment floated to the bottom of my cup, particularly given that the strainer I used has filtered rooibos before without issue. I don’t mind a little added green, however, and don’t feel like it detracted much from the tea itself. Just be mindful that when they say this is a fine leaf, they are not kidding.
So my initial stab at describing this tea was that it tasted vaguely briny, but not necessarily marine? More of a buttery, salty vegetal flavor that sometimes comes through with prepared artichoke hearts. While I type this, I find that the initial sip is sweeter, followed by that complex, green aftertaste which makes for such a compelling cup. Is this that umami thing everyone is always talking about? No wonder people flock to these kinds of teas. As I mentioned earlier, I’m used to sencha that has a definite oceanic tinge to it, and this doesn’t quite fall into that category. This tea is more.. pleasantly grassy knoll overlooking the docks? It feels more refined, smooth; not far removed from its marine counterparts, but very much in a league all its own.
Flavors: Artichoke, Butter, Salty, Sweet, Vegetal