Kei Nishida of Japanese Green Tea IN reached out to me last month with a couple samples of some of their finest green teas, and an advanced reading of the founder’s latest book, 250 facts about Green Tea, which I will review soon. Being the green tea lover that I am, I was excited to try the teas he sent, and learn more about one of my favorite kinds of tea.
You can really tell the difference between higher end green teas and the lower level ones. And the antioxidant levels and health benefit are much higher than an everyday bagged tea. It’s worth the extra step to prepare a quality green tea like the one I’m reviewing today — the aromatic Issaku, which is full-bodied, earthy and very fragrant. The leaves are very fine, and the tea has a lot of great flavor to it.
I did three steepings of this tea at 3 minutes each, and I think the second was my favorite, but all three were really flavorful.
While this tea is very earthy and somewhat grassy like a sencha, it has a slight sweetness and a softness to it that Kei says comes from the way the tea is grown. Sugar cane is used as fertilizer, which is called the “Chagusaba Method,” and he says that he’s currently the only seller of tea prepared this way, and it is number one on the Rakuten market in Japan.
Talk about a green tea! I haven’t had a tea that steeped this green in a while. The swampy color almost looked like matcha to me. This photo does not do justice to the bright green hue of this tea.
Overall, if you are a lover of rich, green teas, you’d like Japanese Green Tea IN’s Issaku blend a lot. I think it would also be wonderful iced, since the temperatures are warming up.
Let me know in the comments below the best loose leaf green tea you’ve ever had!
Also, happy Sipping!