Sunday, February 5, 2012

Two Leaves and a Bud, Gen Mai Cha Green

I had never had a genmaicha before. This friend supplied sample is in a silk pyramid. I steeped it for 3 minutes in below boiling water. Oh My Goodness, does this smell great as it is brewing! Roasty, toasty, Rice Krispies in my cup. The brewed bag is full to busting as my Grandmother used to say. The brew is clear and light amber/green.

This reminds me of back in Junior High when the school put oats in the hamburger to make it go further. To this day I crave oats in hamburger. Now I don’t have history with this tea, so I have no built in craving, but I can imagine that same need for stretching is how this tea came in to being. So I did a little research… According to Wickepedia, that bastion of always accurate information ;^) genmaicha did originate to stretch the leaf so the poor of Japan could enjoy their tea. So my oats in hamburger analogy is pretty accurate.

Genmaicha is traditionally made with bancha, a lower grade version of sencha, which is also a Japanese tea. This tea is also known as popcorn tea as some of the rice pops while roasting, resembling, well, popcorn.

I like it but I am still trying to wrap my mind around the taste. Both interesting and truly different than anything I have had before. I have no point of reference. By reading other reviews I assume this is an excellent example of this type tea. Once I develop a taste for genmaicha I will probably agree.

Update - Had another cup this morning – from yesterday’s sachet! Never throw them out until you try. I am actually enjoying this more the second time around. I steeped it too long yesterday. Today I am not drinking this because it is interesting or different. I am enjoying it because it is good, really good.

Visit the Gen Mai Cha webpage.

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