Bizenya Kohaku

I found this tea from Bizenya but I can’t remember who gave it to me in the first place.

The good thing is that it’s a very interesting tea.

It first goes through the ichou process (sligh withering, also called bihakkou), then it is fixed using the kamairi process (pan fried), and the final steps are done with Taiwanese machinery.

The site doesn’t give much more information, but it looks like this is a type of oolong tea.

Kohaku, which means amber, comes from Hidaka city in Saitama prefecture. It won a grand gold prize at the 2014 World Green Tea Contest.

Let the tea tasting begin

The tea leaves have a sweet and floral aroma. These floral notes are the most intense that I’ve experienced in a Japanese tea.

Another uncommon thing is the shape of the leaves. They are lightly twisted.

I’ll describe them as being medium size. Not as small as sencha, but smaller than bancha.

For this tea I think that it’s best to use a gaiwan and prepare it accordingly: 4 grams of tea, about 120 ml (4 oz) of boiling water, and multiple infusions of 30 seconds.

As expected, the wet leaves have a floral aroma too. The infusion resulted in a liquor with a clear yellow color.

It’s time to taste it.

This tea is similar to a Taiwanese lightly oxidized oolong. I haven’t tried that many teas from Taiwan, but I think that they are sweeter than this one.

The floral notes remind me of jasmine. It’s also refreshing.

I noticed that both the color and the flavor were stronger in the second infusion. It’s better than the first one.

Then I made a third infusion. Even stronger than before, quite good.

I liked the sweet aftertaste.

The fourth and fifth infusions were lighter. Very similar to each other.

Drinking this tea at the start of the new year was a good experience. It’s much different from what I usually taste.

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