Gyokuro Green Tea
Gyokuro Green TeaGyokuro Green TeaSakamoto Tea Garden JapanSakamoto Tea Garden JapanSakamoto Tea Garden JapanSakamoto GardenGyokuro-Green-Tea

Gyokuro Japanese Organic Green Tea

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This revered tea is at the top of the Japanese green tea list. Bushes are shade-grown for three weeks prior to the spring harvest, which enhances L-theanine and produces a very soft liquor. Tea Master Sakamoto's organic garden is located in Kagoshima.
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This organic Wakamusha (young warrior) Gyokuro is grown and harvested in Kagoshima Prefecture, a pristine area surrounded by immense natural beauty and enriched with volcanic soil. Elmwood owner Bruce Richardson recently visited Shuichiro Sakamoto and his incredible garden on the island of Kyushu, where the two were interviewed by Japanese television. Mr. Sakamoto is passionate about the soil quality, which is the richest we have seen.

Gyokuro is admired as the highest grade of Japanese green tea. Master Sakamoto uses a unique two-step shading protocol: three weeks before harvest, one layer of shading is placed over the bushes. A week later, the second layer of shading is added which places the tea plants in nearly total darkness for the final two weeks before plucking. At harvest, the leaves are immediately steamed, dried, and carefully rolled into distinctive shapes resembling pine needles. Gyokuro is harvested only once a year in the early spring. The delicate flavor and slightly sweet aftertaste make Gyokuro the choice of green-tea connoisseurs. Perfect for cold-steeping! Because it is shade-grown, this tea has the highest concentration of the catechin EGCG, one of the most powerful antioxidants found in plants.

Of utmost importance, severe shading helps create more umami flavor—a taste unique to Japan—as the plant stores additional L-theanine in the leaf. L-theanine is an amino acid that mostly develops in the roots of the tea plant. As it moves into the tea leaves, it reduces back to the previous components, which, when exposed to sunlight, help form catechins. Shading, therefore, prevents the creation of catechins that can give tea an astringent or bitter taste.

Discovered in 1949 in Japan, L-theanine is rarely seen in nature except in tea. It enhances mood by stimulating alpha brainwaves, which can induce a calmer, yet more alert, state of mind. L-theanine also helps lower the pulse rate and blood pressure while it balances and moderates the effects of caffeine, making shade-grown green tea all the more unique in the world of healthy beverages.

Yields multiple infusions. Steep like a tea professional and never use boiling water on green tea. 165-175F is the optimal temperature.

Great for cold-steeping in one of our cold tea flasks.

Cold Tea Flask with Filter Top

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