Tea is something that billions of people around the world enjoy every day. We drink it morning, noon and night. We drink it to get us up in the morning and to calm us down in the evening. We drink it while we chat to friends and are distracted by work. But occassionally you have a cup of tea that makes you stop in your tracks. A tea so unique and compelling that you pause for a moment to appreciate the finer things in life. This tea is Organic Japanese Gyokuro. Famous for its deep green leaves, vivid jade infusion and intense umami flavour, Gyokuro is a tea connoisseurs dream.
How is Gyokuro produced?
Organic Japanese Gyokuro is unique in almost every way. Unlike most teas, Gyokuro is shaded for 21 before harvesting. This puts stress on the leaves, increasing their effort to photosynthesise. The result is a deeper green colour of the leaf and a greater production of amino acids, such as L-theanine. Shading also ensures the leaves produce less catechin, the tannins in tea, which create bitterness. The result is a smooth, rich, umami infusion with pronounced notes of seaweed.
The perfect balance is to maintain a healthy lifestyle while still enjoying the things you love the most. Perhaps this is the reason for the rise in popularity of green teas.
Benefits of drinking Gyokuro
In the case of Gyokuro, the L-theanine created from shading the leaves not only boosts the umami taste of the tea but also stimulates mental focus. Unlike in coffee, the caffeine present in tea releases at a slower rate over a longer period of time. This means that enjoying a cup of Gyokuro will promote a healthier state of mental alertness.
Packed with anti-oxidants, Organic Japanese Gyokuro also helps to boost the immune system and fight free radicals. Although this is common in all green teas, it is particularly evident in Gyokuro. As is its ability to boost your metabolism and lower blood sugar levels.
As you can see, beyond it’s spectacular flavour and unique production, the health benefits of Gyokuro make it one of the finest green teas in the world.
How to brew Gyokuro?
It is important to remember that Gyokuro is a tea to be respected. It requires care when brewing to do justice to its superior quality leaves. The main thing to consider when brewing Gyokuro is that the water temperature should be around 60 degrees – considerably lower than for other green teas. You then want to brew the Gyokuro for 2 minutes. This is enough time to extract the sweet, umami rich flavour without over-brewing the tea, causing it to become bitter.
! If you do not have a temperature controlled kettle, do not worry! Simply boil the water, pour into your AVANTCHA teapot and add 2 cubes of ice. This will help to bring the temperature down so it will not burn the leaves.
For the perfect infusion:
- 2tsp Gyokuro
- 200ml water (60 degrees)
- Brew for 2 minutes
- Remove the leaves but do not throw them away. The magic of Gyokuro will continue to reveal itself in later infusions