Today, I received a package I had been waiting for, for about a week. It is, of course, my mystery sample from Yunomi Tea.
Yunomi (pronounced “you-know-me”) is a global launchpad for small-scale tea farms, factories and other producers in Japan. We are focused on providing you with all that you need to live a life steeped in tea, and we are dedicated to helping you connect with the people behind the products you consume.
I was incredibly impressed with the effort that Yunomi went to in order to create a memorable experience. When I opened the envelope I thought I might get a small, nicely packaged sample of tea for which I would have to guess at the brewing instruction. However, I got so much more than that. Not only did I receive 10g of Spring Sencha Blend tea but it also included detailed brewing instructions on the small packet, as well as interesting information about the specific tea sample, together with a “Quick Guide to Japanese Tea” that left nothing to the imagination in terms of Japanese tea. Inside were some standard steeping guides, the names and descriptions of both rare as well as common Japanese teas, plus it described some tea ware descriptions that can be incredibly difficult to understand.
Dry Leaves: The dry leaves consist of that beautiful vibrant green with numerous flecks of bright emerald green dotted throughout, which you can only find in Japanese Sencha. It was a nice mix between long needle thin leaves and dust with every size in between. The tea certainly lived up to its name, as the aroma reminded me of spring, just as the season changes and a profusion of daffodils start emerging.
To brew I used freshly boiled water that I left for about 10min for it to cool to 60°C. As I have an electric kettle with a range of temperatures, I was easily able to check the progress. The tea was brewed in 200ml for 1 minute then for a second steeping at 80°C for 20 seconds, and a third steeping at 80°C for 1 minute. Each time it produced two small cups from my miniature kyusu.
Wet Leaves: Once hydrated, the colour of the leaves darkened, leaving an attractive forest green; it also had a paste-like texture, with the bigger leaves becoming more apparent. As for the aroma, it was just as fragrant as the dry leaves, creating a luxurious experience.
Tea liquor/infusion: The liquor was incredibly light for a green tea, both on the tongue and in appearance, which was a very pleasant surprise. The taste was the perfect balance between bitter astringency and buttery sweet, leaving very little to the imagination. Over the second and third steeps, the flavour did not diminish; instead it grew bolder as the leaves unfolded to their true potential. The lovely, buttery sweet taste that is quickly becoming my favourite feature did not go away or overshadow the slight bitterness – instead it just grew alongside it.
Would I drink it again? Definitely! In fact, the other half of the sample is going to be used for a nice relaxing moment. The only thing that would make this tea adventure even better is if the guide was stapled.
Yunomi offer a mystery 10g tea sample with shipping free per household each month. If your own follow this link.