Tea tasting: Kahori Second black tea (Masuien)

This tea is one of the many gifts of Shizuoka black tea that I’ve received recently, without the obligation to blog about them. But of course I must. Just delayed. I’m actually almost finishing this tea. Too busy in RL lately.

Anyway, Masuien is an organic tea farm in Kawanehon-cho, central Shizuoka. I’ve previously featured it in one of my ‘Special Focus on Shizuoka’ articles.

You can read more about the farm in this article.

Kahori Second is a black tea made from the Koushun cultivar during the summer (second) harvest. The picked tea leaves are left to wither in a cool and dark place for about 14 hours.

Now, Koushun is one of the popular cultivars in recent years. A cross between Kurasawa and Kanayamidori, it was registered in 2000.

It is a medium budding cultivar that grows a larger number of buds. Its characteristics consist of a strong aroma that could range from fruity to floral and a harmoniously rich umami flavour, which is highly rated in surveys.

Koushun is also one of the versatile cultivars, because it is not only suited for the making of sencha but also kamairicha, oolong and black tea.

At Masuien, Koushun accounts for about 15 per cent of its total cultivars planted. It is made into black tea, sencha and oolong at this farm.

Under the product name of Kahori Second, this black tea has won multiple awards. It received the highest gold award in the 2013 prefectural tea competition for black tea category and continued to garner some of the top prizes in recent years.

The packaging has a rather vintage look, but I’m not sure if the one I received was exposed to water or something during the journey to me, because the ink seemed to have run at some parts. Thankfully that did not affect the tea inside.

The content is 50g. Can’t believe I’m like halfway through it already before starting to blog about it. Ha.

The dry leaves looked evenly dark brown. I brewed 3g in 200ml boiled water, letting the leaves steeped for 3 minutes.

The resulting tea liquor was golden amber with a refreshing floral aroma.

It was very sweet like honey, with some cherry notes. The mouthfeel was smooth and soothing, a texture that was almost milky rich.

I continued the subsequent steepings with the same brewing parameters. The leaves were good for a total of five steepings, while maintaining a sweet brew all the way.

I had found that the tea paired well with different kind of snacks, ranging from sweet butter cookies to savoury local buns to what I have previously posted, a matcha-flavoured sweet potato snack.

I was hoping to visit Shizuoka towards the end of this year, but looks like my plan isn’t working out with the current packaged tour-only restriction. Hopefully Japan will open up for independent travel soon. Even then I wouldn’t visit in the first season it opens because for sure millions of people will throng to it. Patience, patience. LOL.

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