2019 First Place Kansai Regional Competition Winning Matcha
Asahi No. 4001
The most amazing thing about tea is its profound ability to continue to amaze us and bring us back to the very first moment we tried something pure. Asahi No. 4001, grown by the Ota family in Uji, was awarded the best matcha in the Kansai region out of several hundred entries and therefore considered the best in Japan. It is so extremely limited that less than 150 cans are available in the world and exclusively available at Tea Dealers.
On a very rare occasion, we encounter a tea that is so special that the depth of aroma and taste transcends anything you have ever encountered. The aroma fills the room the second that the water from the kettle touches it and the steam starts to rise. The taste is so clear and with such a defined character that you almost giggle like a child. The warmth of the viscous liquid permeates your soul and you try not to get too emotional and focus on the moment. This experience will never be repeated; "Ichigo, Ichie".
Competition matcha is the absolute pinnacle of matcha production consisting of one cultivar from a single lot that creates an incredibly clear and defined taste that is not diminished by blending with other lower quality matcha. The tea is cultivated using centuries-old traditional methods and the leaves are hand-picked to ensure that only the highest quality is used in the four kilograms (about 200 cans) that will be submitted to the competition for evaluation. Only this small amount that was submitted can be named the competition tea and no other.
Matcha of this quality is fully enjoyed in the most traditional and formal method, which is Koicha. Koicha, thick tea, uses twice the amount of matcha and half the amount of water, resulting in a dense paste that is deep green and without any foam at all. It will be necessary to use a bamboo whisk to prepare it.
5g of sifted matcha, 40ml of water at 85-90c
Start by making sure all the matcha is submerged into the water, then gently whisk the liquid until it thickens and becomes consistent. Move quickly but use short strokes and enjoy while still warm.
Watch Koicha Making Video
Here is a short guide on how to make the perfect bowl of matcha
Flavor and Aroma Profile:
Dark chocolate and peony fragrance, perfectly balanced taste of refreshing bitterness, umami, and a long floral aftertaste
10 x 2g for Usucha, 4 x 5g for Koicha