The Kirishima Tennen Gyokuro leaves are shaded for three weeks before their harvest at the end of April.
The extremely delicate leaves come from Oku Yutaka, a later cultivar not easy to handle in organic farming (in a similar fashion than Asatsuyu), this is why is not as common as other cultivars in Japan. The name of the cultivar means deep richness.
The sweetness and the fragrance of this tea, awaken the senses with the complexity of its aromas and the infusion yields a striking green colour, umami-rich with a marine aroma, high in amino acids & low in catechins.
The creator of this marvellous gyokuro is Shutaro Hayashi, a well-known farmer from Kirishima.
Shutaro Hayashi belongs to the fifth generation of the tea garden founded by great-great-grandfather in 1897, which is located on a plateau at the foot of the Kirishima Mountains.
In 1993 Osamu, Shutaro's father started pesticide-free farming after growing uneasy with the use of pesticides in tea growing. Until the third generation, the tea gardens were managed naturally.
During the third generation, there was a takeover & the garden came back to traditional farming. The fourth-generation decided to go back to non-traditional farming, and this is how the tea gardens from the Hayashi family have been managed since.
Shutaro Hayashi is the artisan tea maker who is behind the Miumori Kirishima Sencha, also in the shop.
If you scan the QR code in the image gallery you will be able to enjoy a nice song that I have selected to match this tea.
The Japanese Tea Evangelist says: gyokuro is one of my favourite teas together with matcha. The experience of drinking gyokuro is completely different from the experience of drinking other types of Japanese teas. Gyokuro usually is steeped at a much lower temperature with little water, in order to extract as much as possible of its rich umami flavour. The Tennen Gyokuro Oku Yukata offers a whole new level experience with its marine & seaweed notes along with its sweetness. No bitterness.
Kirishima Tennen Gyokuro (50 gr)
Type of tea: Japanese gyokuro (single-origin naturally grown)
Tea Bush: Oku Yutaka
Amount: 50 grams vacuum-sealed pouch with a cardboard wrapper
Origin: Kirishima, Kagoshima, Kyushu, Japan
This is how Shutaro Hayashi recommends brewing his sencha:
Amount of tea: the desired amount of tea
Amount of water: 200 ml of water
Water temperature: 50/60 degrees Celsius (1st to 4th brew)
Amount of time: 55 secs (1st brew) 10 secs (2nd to 4th brew)
This is how The Japanese Tea Evangelist recommends brewing this fantastic gyokuro tea.
Medium: Japanese clay teapot (kyuusu)
Amount of tea: 3 grams of tea (about a teaspoon & a half)
Amount of water: 40 ml of water
Water temperature: 50 degrees Celsius (1st brew) 55 degrees Celsius (2nd brew) 60 degrees Celsius (3rd brew) 65 degrees Celsius (4th brew)
Amount of time: 60 secs (1st brew) 45secs (2nd brew) 30 seconds (3rd brew) 15 secs (4th brew)
NOTE: If you do Gong Fu Cha my recommendation is to use your usual parameters for Japanese green teas. Remember that Japanese teas are for the most part steamed & therefore more delicate than other types of teas.