Sakura season has arrived much earlier this year, which means it will finish earlier. Too sad…., but after Sakura, we have tea!
The season of new tea, known as Shincha generally starts March in Okinawa, the southernmost area of growing tea in Japan, and goes up north, reaching to Kyoto around the beginning of May. Unlike Kyoto, Shizuoka and Kagoshima, Okinawa is not that well-known as a tea-producing area even among Japanese, because it accounts only for less than one percent of Japanese production. Still, tea made in Okinawa is truly “the very earliest season’s tea” in Japan.
Luckily, I got a package of Okinawa shincha. The one I got is made from a rare varietal “Inzatsu”, which is characterized by containing a lot of catechin and a particular aroma component, producing refreshing aroma like jasmine flowers. It does have a great natural flowery aroma!