June Wedding! Time for something borrowed! I received this tea from my BFF Todd, who gifted me with several teas from Japan when he went on vacation there last March. I actually made this tea during my tea presentation at the library last National Library Week, and it went over really well. I didn’t really have a chance then to actually get to to sample any of my own samples though, heh.
So I decided to make a cup of this for breakfast… I’ve had a few different genmaicha in the past, and haven’t ever had one I didn’t like (though I was quite disappointed that one I bought stateside claimed on its ingredients to have added popcorn… I’m not all about that, and decided from now on I’d rather pay the shipping to order from Japan just to know I’m not getting additives in my genmaicha!) At least I know I won’t have that problem here. There was also, thankfully, a small paper insert inside the tin that had some English on it, which is good for me, as my Japanese isn’t amazing… I could translate the insert, but it would’ve taken me a while! So the leaf in this is sencha, specifically a summer harvest sencha. Most of the genmaicha I’ve had has had bancha leaf; I’ve had one other with a sencha base, harvest unknown.
I’d say the taste is slightly less sweet than some of the other genmaicha I’ve tried; the base has a bit more of a sharpness to it that makes the vegetal grassiness more pronounced, and it has a touch more of a vegetal astringency following the sip. It also has just a touch of a salty note. There is still that toasty, nutty flavor from the roasted rice, but I feel the green tea holds a little more prominence in this particular genmaicha over the rice than in other genmaicha I’ve tried. It’s a quality leaf and a good tea, but for genmaicha I’m finding I actually prefer more “low-quality” ones myself… more rice, lower-quality bancha leaves, just because they produce a naturally sweeter profile. But I certainly have no problems with this.
Flavors: Astringent, Grass, Nutty, Roasted, Salt, Toasted Rice, Vegetal