Yame Gyokuro - 2023 Shincha
Origin: Hoshino Village, Yame, Fukuoka Prefecture
Cultivar: Saemidori (40%) + Okumidori (40%) + Yabukita (20%)
This special blend of cultivars infuses from a light golden-green on the first infusion to a rich emerald green on the second infusion. it starts with a marine air fragrance, which fades in later infusions. The first infusion has a full mouth feel and smooth texture with plenty of umami and buttery and slightly salty notes and a warm grassy finish. Later infusions continue smooth with umami and increasing amami (sweetness) and decreasing astringency.
Good gyokuro is often compared to a fine dashi (broth) and this tea is full in the mouth with an herbaceous, sweet, and slight marine flavors. A low temperature is needed to bring out the "amami," or sweetness, and low astringency for which gyokuro is known. The Yame region of Fukuoka Prefecture on Japan's southern island of Kyushu is known for producing high quality, but a relatively limited amount, of sencha and gyokuro. The region consistently produces gyokuro that wins awards at Japanese national tea competitions. A person living in Tokyo would find it a real treat to enjoy this fine tea. You can now have it here in North America.