Chajin - Okumidori Sencha 2020: Review
This balanced Okumidori sencha from Chajin is a delightful taste of spring.
Harvest Date: Spring 2020
Growing Region: Honyama, Shizuoka
Steaming: Asamushi (lightly steamed)
Okumidori (おくみどり) is a cultivar developed in Shizuoka Prefecture, as a hybrid of Yabukita and Shizuoka Zairai (seed-grown) #16. Registered in 1974, it has become known for its well-rounded profile and strong colour.
The first scent of this Okumidori sencha was quite refreshing. Smelling the dry leaves brought to mind gentle scenes of grassy hills dotted with flowers. Visually, the tea exemplifies the classic Shizuoka style. Rather than the dark and wiry needles of shaded Kyoto senchas, the leaves are a little flatter and lighter in color, due to being unshaded.
This sencha has the essence of fresh spring meadows. Its bright colour and smell of cut grass and rainforest trees is potent and builds up anticipation for the notes to follow.
4g/100ml | 60s | 80°C
We brewed this to Chajin’s recommendations. Brewing this tea at 80°C produced no harsh astringency, yet still brought out all of the lovely aromatics along with a well-rounded, but not too heavy umami.
Taste and Aroma
The first sip is smooth and sweet. There is a light texture that’s not too thin, almost tingling to say thank you for enjoying my leaves today. This tingling is something that we love in Shizuoka senchas. The taste is fresh and grassy but mellow, and somewhat fruity resembling honeydew. While definitely present, the umami was light and delicate.
2nd: 45s | 80°C
The color remains a consistent green-yellow, and the fresh green aroma persists, though slightly fainter this time around. The liquor now has a savory thickness to it, with the brighter fruity and floral notes being resolved into a more mellow and puckery body, having a more dominantly grassy taste with a subtle astringent finish.
3rd: 50s | 80°C
This infusion was much the same as the second, although with a muted flavor and texture.
This sencha is a solid example of the classic Shizuoka style, being well-rounded with subdued astringency, and is a perfect for someone who wants to explore this region’s teas.