All-Japan Grand Prize Sencha / Brewing

Congratulations on purchasing 2014's Finest Sencha

Each year producers from all over Japan grow a special class of tea that is classified as Shuppin (出品) or Hinpyoukai (品評会). Shuppin teas are made specifically to be shown at regional and national tea competitions in Japan . These teas are grown in small batches and processed separately from other teas a producer might be making. Generally they are of one varietal - this years prize winning sencha is 100% Yabukita while the gyokuro was 100% Saemidori varietal. The volume of tea grown in this style is very small. The maximum allowable production amount of a shuppin tea that will be shown at the national level is four kilograms. This is to keep the tea market stable and also keeps the availability low, and thus scarcity drives value. 

Shuppin teas are judged on visual characteristics as well as taste and aroma. This year over 100 sencha teas were shown in the national competition and the one you purchased was chosen above all, number one. 

The tea was produced by Furukawa Akitoshi and his team in Yame, Fukuoka, Japan.  

Photo courtesy of Iwai Seichaen

Photo courtesy of Iwai Seichaen


Brewing

  • Boil water and pour 50cl into the tea cup(s) you'll be using.                               If using a scale, 50cl = 50g 
  • Empty entire contents of the sencha into a cool, dry kyusu (tea pot).                Do not pre-warm the kyusu.
  • Cool water by pouring between cups until the temperature is between         57-55C (134-131F)
  • Slowly pour the water over the leaves and allow to steep for two minutes.   DO NOT Shake the pot while brewing.
  • While tea is brewing in the kyusu, fill the your tea cup(s) with very hot water to preheat them, discard water after 45 seconds. 
  • After two minutes, slowly pour the tea from the kyusu into the preheated tea cup(s).
  • Allow the last drops to drip into the cup, this should take about one to one and a half minutes. 
  • Enjoy.

Please use bottled spring water when making this tea. We recommend Poland Spring or Fiji.