Friday, March 2, 2012

Tea as an aftertaste

(This post is a continuation of the last entry.)

The tea brewed in boiling water was indeed strong.  I first tasted thick kabusecha’s umami and its aroma rose to my nose.  It wasn’t bad but it was one of the strongest aromas I have ever experienced.  Then soon, I was attacked by an intense bitterness.  It filled in my mouth and I felt that the heavy flavor went down on my throat to my stomach.  It is definitely new but I don’t consider it tasty.

After tasting, as I was taking note of the flavor, I still felt its aftertaste.  It has a lingering flavor which probably lasted for a few minutes.   Despite the substantial bitterness, the aftertaste was pleasing, though.  I could feel a gentle tinge of green flavor remaining at the back of my palate.  It is a mixture of smooth bitterness and flattering sweetness.  Now, I understand the meaning of “You taste sweetness after 2-3 minutes”.

To explore more, I tried the brewing in a different condition.
Tea leaf: 2g
Water: 50ml /1.8oz
Brewing time: 40sec
This tea still has a thick flavor, but surprisingly I didn’t find much bitterness.  Since other flavors were bold, I was not satisfied with the weak bitterness.  The lingering taste is alive and well.

My recipe needs more improvement but I found a good potential in this brewing method.  You just boil water with a kettle and throw tea leaves into it.  That’s it.  If you find out the correct amount of leaves and brewing time, it will be much easier than the usual ways.

This is not the type of tea to quench your thirst.  This is tea to be sipped in small amounts and relished the rich flavor of fine tea.  Of course, savoring the long and soothing aftertaste will be the most brilliant part of this tea.  I hope you enjoy it in your own way!


  1. A friend introduced me to some "gong fu" brewing of japanese green tea not so long ago. Little kyusu (around 10cl), a good amount of leaves (high quality sencha), boiling water, brewing a few seconds only. The result was quite amazing.

    The purpose was to show me that very good quality tea could be prepared in different ways with always a good result. And it worked.

    1. Brewing a few seconds sounds really reasonable.

      The method that I found on the book is called “hocha ho”. The book doesn’t tell exactly how long you brew. In the steps, you fan charcoals while brewing. So, I assumed that brewing time won’t be very short, and I tried 40sec on this test. But, I think that short brewing could be more reasonable as your gong fu.

      The premium sencha prepared in a little kyusu must be excellent^^ I want to try that!

  2. Kohei,
    I have one question about tea.
    Do you think green tea dehydrates you?
    I don't know if what I've found is rumor or its true.
    What do you think? What is the main Japanese opinion on this?
    Do you need to drink also pure water within tea cups?

    1. Caffeine, one of the green tea substances, has diuretic effect. So, you could say green tea helps dehydration in some level, but I believe the impact is limited. In Japan, people do not drink water when they drink green tea. We don’t have such understanding that green tea trigger dehydration. I’ve personally never dehydrated with drinking green tea.

    2. It's perfect I can ask someone directly, meaning some reliable source.
      Like you, you are directly connected with Jap. culture so who knows better about it? That's what I really appreciate.
      Thanks for answer.

  3. I do like bitter tastes (like bitter melon or Kuding tea), but I don't know if I would like green tea that was so bitter. It would just make me feel like I had overbrewed it.

    1. I agree. If bitterness is so strong, it will be unpleasant (^^;;