Description: This Japanese Gyokuro is a 'diamond in the rough' green tea that will stir some intensity into your daily tea time. It has an elegant, subtle, yet strong flavor with a touch of sweetness. It is one of the few Japanese teas still plucked by hand. Gyokuro is the highest grade of Japanese tea available on the market.
Gyokuro tea is grown in different conditions from other green teas. This tea undergoes a special process to alter the chemical composition of its leaves. Gyokuro tea This green tea is grown in a misty and rainy climate at a lower altitude than sencha, a more common Japanese green tea.
A few weeks before plucking, the tea bush is covered with black curtains or bamboo and straw shades, filtering about 90% of the sunlight. Shading defines the character of the tea by reducing the photosynthesis process and so increasing the chlorophyll content. The leaves become dark green and the tannin content is reduced, making a sweeter and less astringent tea. As a result, you will get a pure and fresh tea.
Harvesting and Steaming
Only the youngest buds are picked once a year in the springtime, called the first flush, so it is quite a rare tea to find in stores. Once plucked the leaves are immediately steamed to stop the oxidation process and preserve their characteristic flavor.
Once the Gyokuro green tea leaves are cooled down, they then undergo several stages of rolling in order to soften the leaves, promote drying and to allow them to acquire their delicate needle shape.
Drying & Firing
To further reduce their moisture, the leaves are dried again. By this stage, the tea leaves are called "aracha" and will be sorted into several grades named "tencha". The finest grades of tencha will make Gyokuro tea come to life. The leaves are then fired to reduce the moisture one last time, thus making this tea last longer and enhancing its flavor.
Finally the leaves are aged for several months before packaging and shipping to tea shops around the world.
This is truly an art that requires dedication, patience and skillfulness, allowing you to experience a truly calming and refreshing moment in the immense world of green tea and its benefits.
Our nonpareil grade Gyokuro was rewarded by 60th National Tea Competition in Japan. This Gyokuro is comprised of long, deep green, needle-like leaves with sweet aromas of buttered corn, toasted hazelnuts and steamed greens. It has a noble mellow and sweet taste and elegant aroma. When brewed, the tea color is bright green. It produces a cup that is sweet, slightly seaweedy, with a viscous-brothy body.
1. Heat your water to 155° F.
2. Measure out between 3-4 grams of tea on a scale, and place in your pot.
3. Fill your pot with about 2 ounces of the heated water (if you're using the special tiny Rishi pot, this will just fill the pot perfectly to the top.)
4. Infuse the gyokuro for 45 seconds and immediately begin to pour off smoothly and evenly. Decanting swiftly ensures the variables of time and temperature remain more under your control, which makes your brewing process more reliable.
Gyokuro can be re-steeped many times. A general rule of thumb is to brew the second infusion for 30 seconds at the same temperature as the first, the third a few degrees hotter for 1:30, and fourth and fifth for several minutes, a few degrees hotter each time.