Yumefuki - Leaf to Cup-

Japanese black tea called "Yumefuki" made from Benifuki cultivar is produced by Ms Tanaka and her family and team in Kagoshima. 

This is 2019 first flush.

Clear color with a golden ring. 

A lovely cup of fresh green note and a hint of herb with a pleasant bitterness.

They also run their own tea shops both in Kagoshima and Osaka.

They grow, process, serve and sell their tea. I think that this "from leaf to cup" style must be very ideal for a small-scale tea producer.

Another cultivar "benihikari" is available too.

It started with Ms Tanaka's passion and power to tea. And now her daughter and grand daughters have been carrying on her love for tea. 


MATCHA by NHK world

If you are Matcha lover, why don't you check it out!
Broadcast by NHK world. (Available until June 12, 2020.)


Wakocha and Jikocha - Japanese Black Tea and Locally-Grown Tea -

Japanese black tea is called “Wakocha”. Did you know it has another nickname as “Jikocha”? "Wakocha" literally means Japanese black tea, while "Jikocha" is locally-grown black tea. In any case, both refers to black tea grown and produced in Japan, but strictly speaking, they are slightly different.
Japanese black tea was first produced around the 19th century as an export items, but it didn’t last long, and green tea has been the mainstream. But the consumption of green tea has been declining, and more people have given up their tea business.
Black tea has started to be produced again since 1990’s in hope that the local tea industry and community would revitalize and be able to be handed down  to future, and now it is getting popular.
Wakocha and Jikocha  - Yumefuki from Kagoshima-
In other word, in 19th century, production of black tea was encouraged by the government while the current black tea production was started by tea farmers who really care about the community including its economy, environment and future.
So “jikocha” can be taken as the tea for community. If so, there are lots of “Jikocha” produced by people who try to help revitalize the local industry throughout the world.
Mass-produced tea is needed, but Jikocha, which is small-scale, but produced with a great care for the community, could help the areas and the people in the world.


Tea Tasting - Izumi Cultivar Black Tea -

There are so many tea cultivar in Japan. Some are popular and others are rare. “Izumi” cultivar is one of the rare one, and sometimes called an “illusory cultivar”. Izumi was originally used for “kamairi-cha (pan-fired green tea) to export, but gradually its exports had been shrinking and the cultivar itself became rare.
It is still rare, but now I see more for sure mainly as black or Oolong teas.
Luckily, I have three different Izumi Wakocha (Japanese black) produced by three different tea artisans. All of them are lightly oxidized. 

As you know, the taste can be different depending on the area the tea is grown, the producers even the cultivar is the same. 

Let's see....

I like the left one best. It has a surprisingly peach aroma with a little bit of pleasant bitterness, which I like. As a tea-lover, tasting tea is always fun and exciting.

Kamairicha made by Mr Kajihara in Kumamoto

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