Nakamura-en #03: Kabuse Karigane, Premium Shaded Leaf Stems

Tea type
Green Tea
Ingredients
Not available
Flavors
Creamy, Grass, Honeydew, Mineral, Smooth, Spinach, Sweet
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Not available
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Cameron B.
Average preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 45 sec 8 oz / 236 ml

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3 Tasting Notes View all

  • “This tea is a wonderful mixture of green colours and the leaves form thin, smallish pieces that are crisp to the touch. Like little grass shards. It has a very sweet and grassy scent that is rather...” Read full tasting note
  • “Hooray, my monthly “press” samples from Yunomi arrived! They’re so generous with their free samples. This month I happened to choose two teas from the same brand independently of one another, and...” Read full tasting note
    90
  • “Thank you KittyLovesTea for sending this a while ago! This is actually similar to the tea I just tried, even though the leaves seem very different even if they are both green. These leaves look...” Read full tasting note
    82

From Yunomius

Kabuse Karigane: Kabuse comes from Kabusecha, tea that is shaded for 2 weeks to increase the amount of L-theanine giving the tea leaf more umami flavor.

The origins of the word Karigane, literally “the sound of geese”, lies in story that regal migratory geese would rest on branches floating in the sea on their long journey. The leaf stems, resembling these branches, were given this regal name by Kyoto merchants in ages past.

This elegant name is used for very high quality leaf stems such as this Kabuse Karigane. Expect a richer, sweeter umami flavor.

About Yunomius View company

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3 Tasting Notes

1363 tasting notes

This tea is a wonderful mixture of green colours and the leaves form thin, smallish pieces that are crisp to the touch. Like little grass shards.

It has a very sweet and grassy scent that is rather mineral and thick. I would say it smells astringent (if that is possible).

water – 80ml
Raw leaves – 5g
Temperature 60°C for first steep and 80°C thereafter
Four steeps – 2 minutes, 30 seconds thereafter

First steep – 2 minutes – 60°C
Cloudy yellow in colour. I exclaimed “Holy Monkey” when I tasted this…it’s bizarre. Sweet and buttery with mineral and astringency but altogether it tastes like some sort of Japanese soup broth but almost luke warm in temperature.

Second steep – 30s – 80°C
Cloudy yellow green now. It still reminds me of a soup broth. Very creamy, buttery, sweet and vegetal but there is something about it….something that makes it taste strange. More like an Oolong than a green I would say, like a milk oolong meets a mineral green tea.

Third steep – 30s – 80°C
This steep is less creamy and buttery but it is still noticeable in the after taste. The sweetness is now not masked as much as the other steeps and it has a slight toastness about it.

Fourth steep – 30s – 80°C
Now it tastes more like your standard green tea. It’s sweet, grassy, mineral, floral and delicious. This steep is more of what I was expecting throughout for this tea, I don’t think I have ever preferred a teas final steep above any other steeps before.

This tea was just way too bizarre for me and I feel it would be unfair to rate it…well I don’t have a clue what to rate it as anyway. It just is not for me, or at least not at this time.

ian @ YUNOMI

The brothiness you are tasting is the umami in the leaf, produced by theanine. This umami flavor is fifth flavor in addition to sweet, sour, salty, and bitter, and has been an essential part of Japanese cuisine for the last century. Shading the tea plant before harvest preserves the theanine and prevents the more astringent tasting antioxidant catechin from forming (gyokuro for about 3 weeks, kabuse for 2 wks, and tencha for 4 weeks before tencha is ground into matcha powder).

I myself was blown away by the umami flavor of kabuse when I first had it, and it took me a few months before I learn to like it, then fall in love with it. In any case, I enjoyed reading your tasting note…it helps me to know how to explain a tea to people who have never tried it before. Thank you! (Ian, Yunomius Tea Merchant)

KittyLovesTea

Thank you for the information, I always enjoy to read how teas are made and where they are grown. I have never tasted anything like this tea before and it certainly surprised me with it’s flavour. I’m a member of the Yunomi tea club so perhaps I will get used to it over time, or even find something similar that I do like. At least it was an experience :)

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90
972 tasting notes

Hooray, my monthly “press” samples from Yunomi arrived! They’re so generous with their free samples. This month I happened to choose two teas from the same brand independently of one another, and without noticing the connection until I was typing them in the “Notes” box of my order. I’ve been very interested in trying more kukicha teas, and especially karigane, after tasting a couple different ones and loving their mild, sweet flavor. So this was a natural choice for a free sample! The stems have their usual stick-like appearance with mixed deep green and yellow colors. Dry scent is grassy, but in a sweet and creamy way.

The steeped tea has a mild but very sweet aroma. This is so yummy! I noticed that other reviewers steeped this for much longer than I did (2 minutes vs. my 45 seconds) so I’m not sure if I’m doing it wrong… It certainly doesn’t taste like I am! The flavor is light but it feels like it should be, and there’s no lack of taste here. Main flavors are mild, sweet spinach with some grassy freshness. Maybe even a tiny bit of honeydew melon. Overall it’s incredibly sweet and creamy and silky smooth! Delicious!

I am a Yunomi affiliate! Please consider using my referral link if you decide to make a purchase: https://yunomi.us/?ref=12

Flavors: Creamy, Grass, Honeydew, Mineral, Smooth, Spinach, Sweet

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 45 sec 1 tsp 8 OZ / 236 ML

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82
2480 tasting notes

Thank you KittyLovesTea for sending this a while ago! This is actually similar to the tea I just tried, even though the leaves seem very different even if they are both green. These leaves look like lawn mower clippings. :D There is also two different colors to them, a darker green and a lighter green. The flavor is very similar to the Dragonwell I had yesterday. It’s like creamed or breaded corn and the steep color is very light. The second cup was almost the same. I’m used to these types of greens being much different. Maybe I’m steeping them differently now. To be fair, the package says this expired at the end of February (way after KittyLovesTea sent it) and one sip did have a hint of that “old green tea leave” flavor, so I’m not trying this at its freshest. It’s still very good anyway. I’ll steep up the last teaspoon soon!
Steep #1 // 40 min after boiling // 2 min steep
Steep #2 // 42 min after boiling // 3 min

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