Nishide Tea Factory (Yunomi)Edit Company
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Nishide Tea Factory
Uji Gyokuro Tea G20 (must be the year indicator or something… was too lazy to make a new page)
5.8g, 200mL kyusu
I’ve had this since March, but just haven’t had time to get to it since this is just not what I would generally reach for when I’ve got extra time to focus on brewing + making notes and not just casual drinking. In the meantime, I stuck it in the freezer since apparently Japanese greens don’t take to regular storage too well (maybe hearsay?), so I’m not sure if that affected anything.
dry leaves is both dried seafood umami and dried cranberry/fruity like note
I roughly followed Yunomi’s instructions on the packet, but I think the 60 ml first steep was a typo, so I did all my steep w 200 mL. Accidentally did 30s 2nd steep instead of 15s, and I should also note that my kyusu is not the fastest pourer.
in a prewarmed kyusu, leaves emit a smell like oyster or clam. Surprisingly, in the wet leaves, that is tampered down quite a bit, although retains similar character overall.
122f, 2 min: taste upfront is deeply umami, with a sort of thickened texture. aftertaste is umami with maybe something salty lurking along with a grassy taste.
176f, 30s: a hint of astringency along with a hint of sweet. unmistakably umami still, but sweeter. hint of grass in aftertaste.
196f, 50s: a touch of astringent, with muted flavors similar to before.
212f, 1 min (not Yunomi advised, just wanted to see what would happen when pressed for an extra last steep): something with a touch of bitter, overall nondescript and not quite worth mentioning.
Not a bad tea by any means, but my own preferences lean against overly umami notes. I do wonder if my freezer storage of this tea affected the sweetness, since the other 2 reviews seem to have gotten more out of this.
Flavors: Grass, Salt, Sweet, Umami
Received this as a sample from YunomiThis is one of my first times with a TRUE gyokuro, and I guess I didn’t realize how much of a pain it is to brew. The first infusion requires 122 degree water which is very tough to get down to (even steepster’s slider doesn’t go that low). I bought a temperature precise kettle and it only goes down to 140! So the usual advice is to pour it from the brewing vessel into cup to warm both and bring the temperature down. So that’s what I did. And then steep for 2.5 min. They say this is to “prime” the leaves. Whether or not it’s necessary I don’t know, but I used to write instructions for a living so I feel like I have to follow them. Also, the other reviewer of this tea started brewing this at 160 right off the bat – so take that for what it’s worth.
Second, these gyokuro leaves are SO fine. I thought I’d be slick and use my nice glass strainer to watch the beautiful leaf color but NO, because they are so little they all got caught in there. So, I used an old tea glass mug with a built in infuser at the top. But even THAT infuser was not fine enough, so I had to use a fine mesh strainer when I poured it in to catch all the remaining leaves. This tea sure requires a lot of hardware.
So, was it worth it? Perhaps. The first infusion of this tea is very nice, but it’s not your typical green tea. It’s very savory, almost like a miso flavor? It’s very smooth and not hint of bitterness.
The next two infusions required 158 degree water with 20-30sec infusions which is at least a little easier to get on my kettle. Actually, I’m comparing the label to the website and they say for the third infusion to make it even hotter. Why can’t they have consistent labeling?
Anyway – the 2nd infusion brings more of a vegetal note . I may have steeped it a tad too long; the website says 15 sec and I probably did closer to 25. I am getting a touch of bitterness that I wasn’t getting with the tea before.Dang you gyokuro why must you be so finnicky??
The third infusion they say to steep even LONGER and at higher temperature (45 sec @ 175 degrees) but I don’t know, man.. I try it anyway, and sure enough it is even MORE astringent. I’m going back to my original steeping parameters.
Fourth infusion – 25 sec @ 155F. This is not a bad infusion at all. The astrigency isn’t there. There’s still a bit of taste left with some savory flavor. I’m still not in LOVE with the tea, but I think it works a lot better at this lower temperature.
Also, my mesh tea strainer is getting all clogged up now so I think this is my queue to stop with my infusions.
After these infusions, I decide to cold brew the leftover leaves and MAN is the coldbrew tasty. Honestly, I think this tea works MUCH better cold than hot. But with such a high price tag I’d have a hard time recommending it for JUST cold brew.
Drank this again and got the water ratio better if not right. I used three matcha scoops of matcha to approximately 10 to 12 oz of water. What I got is a nice tasting blend of vegetal, grassy, and sweet. It is a very nice matcha if not cheap. It tastes quite good.
This is pretty good matcha. I made it a little too strong. Three scoops of matcha to about six ounces of water. It would have been better witih just two scoops of matcha. It’s got a vegetal somewhat sweet taste to it. I probably wouldn’t have bought this but for Yunomi’s incredible sale a couple of weeks ago where they had $100 Off a $200 purchase. This matcha goes for $45 for a small tin of matcha but it comes in a beautiful matcha tin that is worth half the price alone. And I think the quality is high.
Whisked three matcha scoops of matcha with approx 6 oz of 160 degree water.
I have only had a few Gyokuros so I am not sure where this one fits in. It is a fairly tasty tea. It has a strong taste of umami with a sweet note in the background. It is almost as good as the Gyokuro I reviewed about a week ago that was more than twice the price. I guess Gyokuro is a type of tea I am still learning to like.
I steeped this three times in a 360ml Kyusu Teapot with 160 degree water and 8.2g leaf. I steeped it for 1 min, 1.5 min, and 2 min.
Flavors: Sweet, Umami
I had a hard time warming up to gyokuros as well, there is a big difference in quality from one vendor to another, and the brewing parameters are very precise as I have had a bitter mouth a few times more than I care to admit to. Now that found the one I like, its much easier to stick with that one than trying to reinvent a better experience.
Bought this tea recently from Yunomi when they had their sale 35% off. As this is normally about $68 I probably would not have bought it at full price. It is quite good as gyokuros go. It is a mixture of sweet and umami taste. The umami is ever present but not too powerful. This is not in my opinion a really complex tea having really two notes that I picked up. It is good though. Yunomi is currently sold out of this one. They recommend a first steep of 50 degrees centigrade but as my electric kettle doesn’t have any setting that low I just went with 175 degrees Farenheit.
I steeped this three times with 7.4g leaf in a 360ml Kyusu teapot with 175 degree water. I steeped it for 1 min, 1.5 min, and 2 min. The brewed tea was a very light green in color, the leaves were bright green in color. This is easily one of the best gyokuros I have had but I have only tasted a few.
Flavors: Sweet, Umami
When I brew some of these Japanese greens that ask for really low temps (My kettle goes down to 150, but sometimes they say 140 or even 120F), I will get my kettle to the lowest temp it can do, then pour it into my teacup or some other vessel before pouring it into the pot to lower the temperature a little bit.
I could have done that but I just didn’t think of that at the time. Also it would not have gotten the temp down enough from the minimum 160 degrees of my kettle.