Apparently I accidentally ordered the 2015 version of this tea instead of the fresher 2016. Oops! Oh well, drinking it anyways. I could tell this one wasn’t as fresh as the others I’d been drinking. I got much better results with this one keeping temperatures/steep times a bit lower. When I used a longer first steep (2m), the astringency was a little out of control throughout the whole session. With the shorter first steep time of 1m, it was a much more balanced session, as is advertised in the tea’s description. Bitterness and astringency certainly were present, but did not overwhelm the sweeter flavor. Main taste I got in this was grassiness with some vegetal notes – these were not the crisp and fresh vegetable flavors I was tasting in fresher shincha but almost reminded me of some kind of squash I think. Decent, and maybe the 2016 would’ve been better, but this one was a little disappointing.
Flavors: Astringent, Bitter, Grass, Vegetal