Saturday, June 13, 2009

Ippodo's Matcha: Wakamatsu-no-Mukashi

It's been a while since I received this matcha, and now's as good a time to post a review as any.

Vendor description:
Ground from shade-cultivated tea leaves, matcha is rich in theanine - an amino acid responsible for matcha's full-bodied mellow sweetness. In Japan, there is a special name for this taste: umami. Generally, the higher the grade, the richer the umami taste.

Characterized by its rich aroma, full-bodied mellow sweetness, and vivid green color,
matcha is a favorite among tea lovers in Japan. Invigorating and full of nutrients, matcha is the perfect drink to rejuvenate your mind and body. It tastes best when served with sweets.

For the
matcha connoisseur with a discerning taste, Wakamatsu-no-mukashi is an excellent choice. Rich in umami, it has a distinct fragrance and aftertaste that linger pleasantly in the throat. Wakamatsu-no-mukashi is also an excellent choice as a koicha.

matcha was named by Jimyosai-sosho XIV, the grand master of the Omote-Senke family of tea masters.

This grade of
matcha is the same as that used for Seiun, which was named by the Ura-Senke family of tea masters.

Size of Package: H46mm x D53mm
Net Weight: 20 grams
Per Serving: 2 grams
(usucha) 4 grams (koicha)
Shelf Life: 120 days

Sifted matcha.

Et, voila!

The parameters are: 4 chashaku, 20ml water at 70 degrees Celcius.

I have to say, the koicha of Wakamatsu-no-Mukashi is the best koicha I have ever had, even better than my beloved Matcha Pinnacle from Teaopia (which now all finished, by the way :( ...). The umami taste is so bold and fresh it really kicks in and grabs your attention from everything. No astringency or bitterness whatsoever, even if you try to nitpick at it. All in all, SO WONDERFUL, it makes me afraid to try the other ones which are supposedly even better than this. E.g. the Ummon-no-Mukashi and Seiun from Ippodo, and of course, the Matcha Manten from O-cha.

One unfortunate thing about the Wakamatsu, compared to my Matcha Pinnacle, is that it would be a sacriledge to make it as an usucha. Since it has no astringency or other characteristic tastes, when made into an usucha, it tastes extremely bland and dissappointing, whereas Matcha Pinnacle is great as either usucha or koicha with a balanced taste.

At 1500 yen for 20gs, I have to say, this is the best koicha at the best value I have ever tried. Absolutely marvelous. <3

1 comment:

  1. hi, stumbled across your blog, and I've been finding your reviews extremely helpful! definitely getting this matcha on my first Ippodo order. thanks! :)