Monday, October 11, 2010

My Latest Batch of Homemade Tea

Last Saturday morning, four tea friends joined me for a cupping workshop class at Teacup. The final tea of that session was my latest batch of entirely homemade and home-grown tea. Please read my prior post if you'd like details regarding its production.

As with my previous batches of homemade tea I was not too sure just what I had created... so I was kind of "flying blind" when I chose my brewing parameters. I decided to use a rounded teaspoon of leaf in a medium sized gaiwan with 190° F water steeped 3 minutes. This yielded 3 decent infusions.

The resulting liquor had a lovely amber color and an unusual aroma.

My fellow tasters and I came up with the following thoughts and opinions about this interesting infusion:

Michael - Squash!
Everybody - Yeah. Big time squash-like taste and smell. Tastes like a garden too.
Me - Sweet, roasty smell like baked winter squash. Slight fishiness and skunky aftertaste? Reminds me a lot of bancha.
Xenia - Not fishy. Doesn't really taste like tea. Not too bad. I've had much worse local tea.
Nicole - It has a little white tea flavor in the finish.

So there you have it. I certainly succeeded in my mission to create a totally unique tea. I think I'll call this strange stuff... "South Seattle Tea Estate's Autumn 2010 Squash Garden Bancha."

1 comment:

Alex Zorach said...

This fascinates me. I think of squash as a very American vegetable. And, I've noticed that with teas, something about region comes through in the taste regardless of how the tea is processed. For example, I notice a distinctive "Darjeeling" flavor in common to black, green, white, and oolong teas from that region.

Maybe something about America is coming out?

Then again, the climate in the pacific northwest is radically different from here in the east, and I've only ever tried squash from the northeast (to my knowledge) so maybe there's not much truth in this thought of mine?

At any rate, this is interesting for me to read about; I wish I could have been there to try some!