Wow. Long week and even worse one coming up. Three exams in 2 days is never fun. Within these stressful days I was looking forward to getting my Samovar bundle of samples. Surprisingly they shipped within a day of ordering and I actually got it within 2 days of shipping. A+ service in my opinion. Delivery estimate was the 22-25th.. and I received it yesterday.
Anyway, I was eager to try the first of my tea samples, and what a better tea to kick it off with the ever popular Ryokucha. With all the ranting and raving I knew this stuff had to be good. I mean, if your going to call it “tea crack”, then I guess it’s got some serious credibility.
I followed the steeping instructions on the bag it came in. When I first opened it, the smell of Genmaicha hit me; very similar to the Adagio blend which I’ve been drinking for a couple weeks. The matcha was clearly visible; the pieces of brown rice were a vivid green and overall the smell was somewhat different that the Adagio Genmaicha. I’ll have to credit this to the matcha powder. I heated my water, poured the contents of the baggie into my infuser, poured my water in, and let it steep for a full 3 minutes. It brewed a bright green color. It looked quite delicious.
When it first hits your palette, the brown rice flavor is definitely there. It stands out strong and lasts throughout the first sips. In terms of after-taste, I wasn’t getting the sweet, matcha flavor a lot of people were talking about. It was vegetative, but not so sweet. Then again, it was smooth; there was no harshness at all. The taste of Genmaicha was certainly there, although the matcha seemed to be a little hidden. I was a little disappointed in this regard. I did experience the “milkiness” towards the end of my cup, and then a noticed the matcha powder was sitting on the bottom. Maybe I needed to stir the tea around a bit before drinking. I ended up steeping a second and final time, although not much changed. I tasted the brown rice and vegetativeness of the tea but the milkiness was pretty masked by the other flavors. I will say however that between steeps I did have a sweet taste in my mouth. And this did make me want more :)
I guess my only gripe is that this didn’t taste much different than Adagio’s Genmaicha; maybe my sample wasn’t too great or perhaps I steeped it too long or too little. Other than that, it is a great genmaicha. I can see myself reordering.