Enishi…. I stood there and pondered. I knew this name. The Buddist monk that brought tea to Japan? No. That was Eisai. And then it hit me. Enishi Yukishiro, the villain from the last, and best arc in the Rurouni Kenshin manga. But in a sense, this makes because Enishi, though born in Japan, went to China for 10 years. And in my head, this is perfect since Japanese greens are usually steamed and this is a unique Chinese green tea is steamed and not fried. Chinese greens are typically known for being fried. Greenish grey in appearance. Twisted and tightly rolled. Long, like longleaf pine needles. The fragrance is reminiscent of a Japanese green due to the steaming though in a way it also reminds me of Chinese restaurants. The flavor definitely leans more towards Chinese green as well. Very slight melon or some type of stone fruit and stewed greens. Grassy but higher in vegetal notes. Bits of asparagus, green beans. A bit of astringency. My fault. I pushed it a little bit too much to see what I could glean from the leaves but the astringency isn’t bad. Just enough to be peckish on the tongue. But this does give it bright quality.
In Chinese, this tea is called Enshi Yulu. In a way, you could think of this tea as the founder of Japanese teas. The great, great, great, great? grandparent.