Kamairicha is a type of pan fried Japanese tea. In Japan, most of the teas are steamed. However, there are some types of Japanese teas such as kamairicha or tamaryokucha that are still processed in the Chinese style.
Nowadays, almost all Japanese teas are steamed. The pan fired production method is a rarity used only in certain areas by a handful of tea farmers, therefore is threatened with extinction.
Aracha means crude/raw tea, or tea that hasn't gone through the firing process called hiire. The water content of Aracha with about 5% residual moisture is higher than that of processed sencha, which has a residual moisture of about 2%.
The small business of the Kadota family maintains this tradition to this day and produces this exceptional tea, which requires great experience and a great deal of manual work. Father and son only produce pan fried tea using original machines that are around 100 years old. This tea comes from the Miyazaki Prefecture in Kyushu, an island on the Southernmost tip of Japan.
The Aracha is produced immediately after the harvest. Kamairicha is a green tea low in moisture, this kamairicha has less than 1% which is not as common in Japan. This specialty tea was heated dry, which was still common in Japan in the early 20th century.
Kadota aracha greets the palate with a hint of sweetness, followed by floral notes that end in a soft fruitiness. A dense taste that fills the mouth and reverberates for a long time. Even though this tea has been pan fried, it shows no roasted notes but a surprising freshness that hardly distinguishes it from steamed shinchas.
This particularly fresh raw tea (aracha) comes from the first flush during the spring 2020 and is produced using the delicate leaves of the yabukita cultivar. Another unusual aspect of this tea, is the traditional method without steaming (kamairicha).
The Kadota Aracha Shincha is delightful, with its curled and beautifully preserved leaf. When poured on, a wonderful floral fragrance flows towards you. This combines with a fine sweetness, characterized by a long reverberation on the palate.
What the Tea Evangelist says: I have been brewing this tea for a couple of days now. It has zero roast notes. It's smooth & works well alone or added to drinks such as sparkling water. It tastes excellent cold or ice brewed. It sometimes has a slight peach flavour which makes it interesting. The wet leaf smell reminds me of wet hay yet this smell doesn't transfer to the tea liquor.
Organic Certified DE- ÖKO-039 Non-EU-Agriculture
Kadota Aracha Shincha Kamairicha Organic (50 grs)
As the name already indicates, this is a kind of tea, which was not finally heated. This means, the final heating step hiire, has not taken place. The result is, that this Aracha Shincha from the Kadota family comes with a lot of freshness, like it should be expected from a real Shincha. This is a really fascinating tea, of which only very few kilograms are available each year.
This is our recommendation to brew this tea:
Amount of tea: 1 tea spoon (chami) about 3 grams
Amount of water: 120 ml of water (if chalky we recommend to use mineral water)
Water temperature: 80 - 85 degrees Celsius (warmer water might make the tea to taste bitter)
Amount of time: 50 secs first infusion, 30 secs subsequent infusions.