At room temperature, in the refrigerator or in the freezer. I have three samples stored for six months at the mentioned places. They were triple packed (plastic pouch, tea caddy, Ziplock) and they have not been opened for that duration.
D: room temperature
What do you observe in the pictures?
I found some differences in dry leaves and brewed tea. To tell the conclusion first, they are all bad. Brewed tea D turned reddish in color, which is not a correct hue for shencha. D also doesn’t have a depth in its taste and I found a dusty flavor. E has a yucky bitterness that I tasted in the back of my mouth. F is similar with E but much stronger. F is the worst in taste. I don’t want to drink any of these teas even for my casual consumption. I am very disappointed with the result.
Some of you who have been reading my blog might have noticed the reason of the failure. The day when I prepared the samples six months ago was a rainy humid day. The only cause that I can think of is humidity. The leaves might have absorbed some moisture and I packed the leaves with humid air as well. The moisture must have ruined the tea during the storing. I’m sorry that I could not give you the answer for this subject. But, from this experiment, I can say that it does not matter where you store tea if you pack it on a humid day. Moisture is a very negative factor for tea storing. So please avoid packing tea in a humid day.
I’ll try to do the same experiment again to check if I can get different results next spring.