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Everything posted by LuckyGirl

  1. I'm bumping this topic up as I will be in NYC next week and am wondering if there are any tea shops of note others that those mentioned a few years back in this thread. I have noted Tea Gallery from another recent post and will likely make a stop there. I feel like the suggestions from this old thread are very limited. There must be a few really great shops that are missing from the mentions, no?
  2. After drinking Japanese greens all spring and summer I immediatly went to oolongs and black teas when the fall weather went cold. The last few days I have been sampling so Japanese black teas purchased from Yuuki- Cha. Specifically, this morning I am sipping their Organic Makurazaki Black Tea Hime Fuki.
  3. It's too bad you can't make it for the whole weekend. We'll miss you. And if it turns out you're able to drive up for Saturday at the last minute, that'll be great. Thanks, Tammy. I am bummed about it but hoping that we will be able to drive up Saturday.
  4. I'm very sad to say that I don't think I will make it to the gathering this year. I started selling my pies at some of the area farmers' markets this summer and the endeavor is consuming every moment of my time. It is remotely possible that Steve and I could drive up Saturday afternoon after the morning market but I won't be able to say until the week of.
  5. What is this hidden gem? Nevermind. I read further down the thread and figured it out
  6. I am greatly enjoying the Shincha, 2010 Organic Sencha from Hibiki-an.
  7. Great! We have three people. A few questions: What I meant that I would like to try are all of the 2010 Shinchas. Are you both into that or were you thinking I meant the other Senchas listed under their own heading? Are you interested in splitting the teas four ways if another person is interested or would you like to keep it at three. If the answer from Wholemeal Crank and f3xy is yes on the above question is there a fourth person who would like to join us? Wholemeal Crank and f3xy, I will PM you tomorrow with questions about any teas you may want to be sure to incluse or ones maybe you have no interest in trying. Or, feel free to PM me with your input prior to hearing from me. Trying all these teas will be great fun.
  8. I'm in for the bread workshop and would also love to do a workshop with Kerry Beal. Not in for a Jiffy Mix tour. Would like to go to Grange for dinner Thursday or Friday night. I think Tracklements is a must see for a lot of the folks who will be in for the get together. It is not a big shop so maybe a trip with the entire group wouldn't work but maybe it would. In any event, folks who enjoy smoking fish and meat should be sure to stop at Tracklements. Folks who enjoy eating smoked fish and meat should make it a point too http://www.tracklements.com Polish Village Cafe in Hamtramck makes amazing pierogies. If the main group or subgroups don't include an stop there on Friday I will pick up perogies from there to serve at the gathering meal. In fact, it is a pretty small pace (hard to squeeze groups into) and they don't take reservations so maybe I should just plan on getting perigee from there for the gathering meal. Also, to consider for a Friday afternoon in Detroit is Slow's BBQ. Probably a must stop for BBQ lovers. http://slowsbarbq.com/ Another Detroit spot that is worthy of consideration is Scotty Simpson's for fish and chips. Not your run of the mill fish & chips and definitely a Detroit institution. I have "boagman" to thank for turning me on to Scotty Simpson's via another food board. http://www.scottysfishandchips.com/ Back to Ann Arbor, Cafe Japon is supposed to have a wonderful tea selection. I imagine that I would make a stop there at some point with White Lotus so any other tea drinkers let me know and we can try to figure out a time to go that doesn't conflict with any of the other festivities.
  9. Is anyone interested in making our own sample pack of teas from Yuuki-cha? I would like to try all of the 2010 senchas and the gyokuros but since they don't currently offer sample sizes it's next to impossible for me to try them all. I'm thinking that if 2 other people are interested I could order all of the gyokuros and 2010 senchas, have them shipped to me then divide them three ways and send them on to whoever goes in on the order. We could add the kabusecha too or any others people might be interested in.
  10. I just stumbled upon this thread. My husband, Steve, and I will likely attend most of the events. I will read over the details of the weekend in the next few days and report back with the specifics of what we'll attend. I'm excited!
  11. I just placed an order with hibiki-an dot com and will also re-order from Yuuki-cha soon which will include this year's Magokoro Shincha. I have been drinking nothing else but the Kumamoto Sencha and the Kagoshima Kabusecha since I ordered them a month or so ago. After stumbling with the Kabusecha at first (my own brewing errors) I have fallen in love with it.
  12. I am interested in trying some. Are there any organics?
  13. It is weird how differently we have experienced this tea from one another. It is particularly curious to me that Wholemeal Crank finds a sweetness in it and really has enjoyed the tea when I was struck with such a strong astringency. I usually don't mind and often enjoy a bite of astringency and from what I recall of many of WC's posts she is somewhat sensitive to it. Granted we brewed the tea differently. And weirder yet that she is brewing so much hotter than what I did. I saved the tea leaves from the last session that I posted about and steeped three more times the next day. I dropped the water down to 4 oz because 5 oz to 5 g tea was giving me what I found to be a very thin cup of tea. Perhaps that is how this tea is supposed to drink but I preferred it a little stronger. I didn't go further because I felt like I was not in sync with this tea. I am glad that despite my first steeping of this tea, the one I found hugely bitter and astringent, I was able to drink the subsequent brews with some enjoyment and appreciation though this was not my favorite tea.
  14. Funny how pretty those water marks are.
  15. I use water from my Brita pitcher for tea and use a digital thermometer for temp. I guess you would say that I eyeball the water. I know where to fill my ceramic mug for 5 ounces because I have measured it so many times before. I'm not measuring or weighing the water per cup like I do the tea. I have been brewing this tea in a 12 oz. ceramic mug. I did not pre-warm the mug save for the two 20 second rinses which I poured out through my stainless tea strainer. Today I used the other 5 grams of tea and did two 20 second rinses in the same ceramic mug and steeped for 30 seconds with water at 195 degrees. What a difference 5 degrees made. There was far less astringency in this cup and I enjoyed it far more than the first tasting. I don't really get the sweetness that WC has mentioned. I get a light bodied cup of enjoyable camphor and some smokiness with an astringent end. I would call this a dry cup of tea. The smokiness reminds me of a specific wood and the way it smells after it's been cured vs. before it dries. I wish I could tell you the wood I'm thinking of but I can't put my finger on it. I wonder if the shocking level of astringency I found in my first brewing was at least in part a result of my taste buds being used to the sweetness of the kabusecha and sencha that I have been drinking the last few weeks. I did try this sheng pu-ehr not long after my morning sencha while today there were several hours between my drinking the sencha and having the pu-ehr. I am enjoying this brewing far more than the first steeping of my first brewing and far more than I had expected to. I am off to do a few more infusions.
  16. I agree. Fresh curry leaves aren't always available to me so I always keep a stash in the freezer.
  17. "So if you care about traditional foie gras and about the welfare of ducks and geese (not to forget your right to make your own decisions about the morality of animal-derived foods), you'd better get busy..." "Traditional" foie would be a seasonal product. Using liver from ducks and geese that fatten themselves by gorging on their own in preparation for winter is traditional. Gavage is not traditional (or natural) and in my eyes not much more desirable than what it seems you fear about the potential for factory foieing as more production potentially moves to China. I'm all for "traditional" foie.
  18. Yesterday I steeped this tea according to the recommended parameters- two 20 second rinses of 5G leaf then 5 OZ water at 200F for 10 seconds. Holy moly was that a cup full of astringency and bitterness. I choked down about half of it trying to parse out taste elements but all I got was mouth full of dry cotton and bitter camphor. I was unable to finish the cup. This morning I used the same leaves and steeped for 45 seconds with water at 175F. This cup is far more drinkable. The astringency is just a little bite at the end and is an enjoyable part of the tea. Today I get a slight sweetness from this tea while yesterday I could perceive none. Mostly what I get is camphor. I am not getting what WC described as a silkiness. The tea is on the thin side to me. I don't necessarily mean thin in a bad way rather it is a light tea, feathery maybe.
  19. My brewing set up is about as rag-tag as you can get. I brew it in one mug then pour through a tea strainer into another mug. I do weigh the tea and measure the temp of the water. I eyeball the amount of water unless like this morning I want to precisely follow a brewing recommendation. I have a cast-iron tetsubin but I don't bother with it when I am just brewing tea for myself. It is a pain to make sure the outside is dry so that it doesn't rust. For a while I was using a sweet little antique Lennox porcelein teapot but sadly I broke it a few months ago. I have contacted the Japanese company that Wholemeal Crank recently posted about and am waiting to hear back from them about ordering two of their teapots.
  20. So, this morning I steeped the Kabusecha according to Yuuki-cha's suggestion of 7-G to 7-OZ at 149F for one minute. I did not care for this brewing at all. The tea was thin and insipid. I feel like I only got about a third of what it has to offer. I steeped the leaves a second time with water that was much hotter at 165F for one minute and I probably used about 12-OZ of water. This gave me a lovely cup of goodness that was sweet, mildly vegetal with no astringency.
  21. This morning I have been drinking Yuuki-Cha's Kabusecha. I like it brewed at a higher temp than what they suggest.
  22. I have been brewing the Kumomoto with water around 170 with results that make me happy and I thought the Kabusecha would be the same. The Kabusecha definitely likes cooler water than the Kumomoto. I brewed the Kabusecha at 158F this morning but in my usual large cup with 7G tea to about 11oz water for one minute and the tea is weak and watery. I have a hard time seeing how reducing the water to the prescribed 7 oz per 7G and dropping the temp an additional 10 degrees of tea will produce a cup that gets all that this tea has to give but I will try that later today.
  23. Wholemeal Crank, thanks both for the link to that video and the info on the tea from Sugimoto. What do you know about Sugimoto? Have you ordered teas from them before? I am tempted to order the Temomi Shincha. Our tasting of the Yuuki-Cha Kumomoto Sencha really sparked an interest in green teas for me. I ordered more of it at also Yuuki-Cha's Organic Kagoshima Kabusecha. When I first looked at Yuuki-Cha's website I saw many teas that I wanted to try but was sorely disappointed to discover that there were no sample quantities available. I was even more disappointed when I first brewed the Kabusecha that I had ordered and found that I strongly disliked it. I am happy to report that my strong dislike of the Kabusecha was completely due to user error. My first cup of the Kabusecha was horrible. It was strongly vegetal in a way that I had extreme dislike for and it had a good bit of astringency. I didn't get the special sweetness from the tea. I decided that for the price of this tea I needed to drink my way through it. The second time I brewed the Kabusecha I cut the time down from about 2.5 minutes to just over one minute and I dropped the temp. I found that the tea was much more drinkable. I have further reduced the temp to about 165 F and am only steeping the tea for a minute. Surprise, I am actually enjoying this tea! Bigger surprise is that while writing this post I looked at the receipt from my Yuuki-Cha order and noticed on the brewing page sheet that I should only be brewing this tea at 149 F! I now love both the teas I purchased from Yuuki-Cha. Spring is definitely the time for green as far as my palate goes. I have tried a few oolongs over the past two weeks but I just am not enjoying them right now.
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