I was thinking at first to not mention this tea on my blog, and let the well sensed tea lovers the good care to rush on this exceptional tea. The age of this green tea, harvest 2007, makes it a curiosity, but it is not what makes it exceptional; we know that in the state of “aracha” (unrefined raw tea), a quality sencha can be stored in the fridge for many years. What makes it so great is its superb fragrance, a still uniaue example of superb sencha made with the Izumi cultivar.
So, I will finally talk about it because it would be a shame not to bring it to light.
This is a tea produced in Sashima (prefecture of Ibaraki), by Mr. Yoshida, the producer of succulent Izumi black teas who put under the spotlights this tea variety (decidedly) surprising.
I will not tell the story of this Izumi cultivar again, so I would ask the reader who doesn’t know it, or has forgotten it, to read this article about Izumi and these black teas from Sashima.
Before the success with these black teas, Mr. Yoshida had also produced sencha with. However, with a still little cultivated area of Izumi, and the success of its black tea, our producer has focused this cultivar exclusively on black tea for several years.
It must be said that in the past, Izumi gave sencha not great, very tannic fukamushi (as I could remember).
Yet a few months ago, Ibaraki visit, Mr. Yoshida presents me a sencha he has just found back, an aracha (not final drying, only the powder was sorted) who slept forgotten since 2007 at the bottom of the fridge.
It is about 3 kilograms of a sencha made with the cultivar Izumi, on which he experimentally wilted. And what a result! Beautiful aromas of aromatic herbs and yellow fruits. I was nevertheless afraid that without final hi-ire drying this tea cannot be kept so I propose to make a slight hi-ire.
And now we share a precious sencha Izumi.
If aromatic herbs aromas are not really present anymore, we have a tea with a stronger delicious yellow fruit perfumes embellished with citrus fruits.
The first infusion gives a light and refreshing liquor with a silky attack. On the palate, this beautiful peach aroma is the signature of this sencha. The after is fresh and sweet, long in the mouth with something very slightly bitter like grapefruit.
Second and third infusions provide a more incisive attack tea, power with a delicate but real astringency in the mouth that gives a very typical sencha character despite the peach aromas that are even stronger. In addition, there is a creamy impression and aromas of citrus.
Thus, with its aromas, this sencha Izumi is completely unique and simply delicious! Peaches and cream bring it strangely close to a Yume-wakaba, but citrus and tender bitterness separates it so clearly.
There are very few quantities ! It remains to be hoped now that the producer finally has a little more Izumi tea trees grown enough to redo it in this way, maybe even better with the accumulated experience on the wilting of black teas, again a delicious sencha!