Sencha of the Earth

Tea type
Green Tea
Ingredients
Green Tea
Flavors
Basil, Bok Choy, Creamy, Freshly Cut Grass, Grass, Nuts, Ocean Air, Pine, Smooth, Umami, Vegetable Broth, Zucchini, Broth, Floral, Hay, Peas, Sakura, Salt, Savory, Silky, Spinach, Sweet, Vegetables, Earth, Seaweed, Vegetal, Bitter, Honey, Nutty, Spices, Bark
Sold in
Loose Leaf
Caffeine
Medium
Certification
Not available
Edit tea info Last updated by Cameron B.
Average preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 1 min, 30 sec 5 g 10 oz / 285 ml

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22 Tasting Notes View all

From Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms

Sencha of the Earth is medium-bodied with a smooth quality. It creates a delicate bronze-hued liquor with a hay-like aroma mixed with light notes of chamomile. The taste is decidedly floral with a strong aftertaste evocative of honeysuckles. A perfect spring harvest tea!

Taste: Sweet
Body: Medium
Texture: Rounded
Length: Long
Harvest: May
Tea Cultivar: Zairai
Origin: Wazuka
Cultivation: Unshaded
Processing: Lightly Steamed, Rolled, Dried

About Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms View company

It started with a single cup of tea. As the legend goes, our president Akihiro Kita, or Akky-san, visited Wazuka, Kyoto one fateful day. At the time, Akky-san was still a college student in search for life's calling. After trying the region's famous Ujicha (literally meaning tea from the Uji district), he immediately fell in love and his passion for green tea was born. He had finally found what he was looking for in that one simple cup of tea. After fifteen years of learning to master the art of growing tea from tea farmers in Wazuka, Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms was born and as they say, the rest is history. So what's an Obubu? Obubu is the Kyoto slang for tea. Here in the international department we call ourselves Obubu Tea. That's "Tea Tea" for the bilinguals. We love tea so much, we just had to have it twice in our name. Now Obubu means more than just tea to us. It means, family, friends, passion and the place we call home. More than just tea. Though the roots of Obubu stem from tea, it has become more than that over the years. Obubu is an agricultural social venture, operating with three (1) bring quality Japanese tea to the world (2) contribute to the local and global community through tea (3) revitalize interest in tea and agriculture through education.

22 Tasting Notes

96
6768 tasting notes

Thanks Brian for this one!!!

This is wonderful! I really like this! It has a fresh veggies type smell before infusing and after it smells like steamed asparagus! The taste is like a creamy-basil-pesto type taste which I LOVE as a taste in food and think it’s delightful in tea as well!

Batrachoid

I have to wonder how it’d turn out as fukamushi. Yum!

Shinobi_cha

I totally agree, I described it as basil-pesto exactly too!

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91
4843 tasting notes

This is a fantastic Sencha. Each time I try a tea from Obubu I am impressed by the flavor. No exception with this tea.

There is an earthiness to this Sencha that I don’t think I’ve experienced in another Sencha. It also has a charming spice note to it that is quite good. Certainly one of the most interesting and unusual Sencha teas I’ve tasted recently, and I am really liking it.

Off to write a review!

Shinobi_cha

You know one reason it is so different? I just learned this the other day. It is a different cultivar of tea plant – zairai. Nowadays, the most common/popular breed is the Yabukita cultivar because of the taste and resistance to pests. However, zairai is the oldest cultivar in Japan. This was my favorite tea from Obubu!

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92
280 tasting notes

So far, none of Obubu’s teas have really made me think, ’I’ve got to try that again some day (or rather, order a bag of it at some point)’.
But this one will make me reconsider. Nice to have Steepster, so I can look things up that I enjoyed.

The dry leaf smelled faintly peppery and sweet. The wet leaf in the pot was fantastic — it smelled more strongly of pepper, which quickly dissipated, then gave way to creamy notes and I even smelled what I would describe as plantains.
The tea itself was delicious – it had a light, almost playful sweetness up front, like sweet cream (and yes, the creaminess in the aroma was present in the taste!), then was perhaps fruity, like the smell of apricots.

The 2nd steeping, the wet leaf smelled like pesto — olive oil and basil are probably the best ways I could describe it. The taste had less creaminess to it, but was still sweet and more strongly like apricot again.

I tried an ice steeping as well, and it had more of the traditional balance of slight bitterness, marine, vegetal, and sweet that I’m used to, but it was good as well.

This is quite a unique sencha and I wish Obubu had a better description of it. It sounds somewhat bland or uninteresting from their website, but I still hoped it would stand out (I guess because I’m down to my last samples, and I was hoping this other of their higher quality teas would be really delicious). Well, my hopes weren’t for naught.

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 1 min, 30 sec

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84
335 tasting notes

I prefer this brewed with the Standard method, not so think on the tongue. GREAT WITH SUSHI!

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72
309 tasting notes

This is a gentle Sencha. Much less intense and bitter than most I’ve had most of the time.

This has a nice medium green.. A moderate zucchini rind sort of green.

The bitterness is very light and nicely tasty.

2g to 2oz, 15 sec. 5 steeps.

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76 tasting notes

Now this one smells quite grassy, the dry leaf somewhere between hay and lawn clippings, but also something else, maybe a bit damp and mulchy, soil-y, and… oh, well, I guess this is literally named “earth.” That tracks.

The wet leaf smells about like what I might just call “classic” sencha. Like one whiff of this would probably make anyone go, “oh yeah, that’s sencha.” Someday maybe I’ll have better words to describe this, but all I can say is that the scent is quite directly attached to a specific memory.

First steeping is quite mild, but I got a lovely surprise melon rind or cucumber note amid this grassiness.

I think I chronically under-steep my first steeping, but the second always seems to be where senchas really wake up. Another note about this tea said it would be good with sushi, and I feel like I agree. While I’m not finding anything fantastically bold or stand-out about this sencha, it’s just overall pleasant, with the grassiness and borderline savory brothiness I tend to favor in sushi-sencha without too much astringency.

I am gradually starting to relearn the visual differences in these teas. The leaves in this one are substantially smaller compared to the leaves in the autumn harvest tea I had the other day, which makes sense. Not especially small, but the autumn harvest tea had some impressively large leaves in it. This tea also seems a bit more fragmented than the last, but maybe that’s also just a common appearance with smaller leaves. I’m not sure what amount of stem-iness is common in these teas, but it feels like there are fewer in this spring tea. Hm, now I kind of wish I had photographed the leaves of prior teas for later comparison. Maybe I’ll start doing that.

By steeping 4 or 5 (I’ve lost track), it’s mellowed out into an array of boiled vegetable flavors, I’m getting bok choi and lima bean, maybe a hint of not-unpleasant collard-bitterness. I have been doing these tea sessions on an empty stomach lately, and I feel like it helps me tune into the flavors a little more, in the way that everything tastes better when you’re hungry. So far I have yet to get an upset stomach from this practice, though I have been warned some teas can do that.

It says on the packet that these teas were harvested from 30 year old tea trees. I wonder what flavor differences there are between old and new trees? I don’t see anything advertising “young” trees, so I am inclined to think that the older trees are more favored. Some very brief initial research shows that older teas are greatly favored in the puerh world as they impact how well a tea ages, but I am not sure what their role is in un-aged sencha. Hmmmm.

If I regret anything about ordering this Obubu sampler, it is perhaps not ordering two. It might have been fun to drink one session going in blind, as I often try to do, and a second after reading through the tasting notes and having a better grasp on what others find in each tea, and see if I can find similar flavors. A form of.. I dunno, mentally calibrating my tastes, I guess.

Really, it’s just nice to be mindfully tasting tea like this again. The last time I was in this habit, it was nearly a decade ago and I was coping with… a lot. Tea kept me grounded. Life is a lot easier now in many ways, even if it’s a little harder in others. I don’t necessarily need the tea habit as much now, but… I just really love it. And it’s nice to be finally enjoying a period in my life where I can do things that I love because I love them, without them needing to fulfill some practical function to be worth doing. I’m so grateful for that.

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82
2759 tasting notes

Sipdown! (1 | 42)

I ordered a t-shirt from Obubu recently, and they included a 5g packet of this tea as a free sample. :3 (Because, you know, I really need MORE Obubu tea… XD)

It’s very smooth and somewhat sweet, with a lovely brothy richness to it. I’m actually getting rather strong notes of sakura, which I didn’t mention at all in my previous note. So that’s interesting. Otherwise it’s all steamed green vegetables, especially bok choy. Very silky and satisfying to sip on, like some kind of tasty vegetable soup. There are some deep umami undertones as well, but they don’t overwhelm the lighter veggie notes. Also I think I’m getting a hint of pine at the very end? Which is an interesting and nice pairing with the sakura.

Now I’m craving gyoza soup with bok choy for dinner…

Flavors: Bok Choy, Broth, Floral, Grass, Hay, Peas, Pine, Sakura, Salt, Savory, Silky, Smooth, Spinach, Sweet, Umami, Vegetable Broth, Vegetables

Preparation
170 °F / 76 °C 0 min, 45 sec 5 g 7 OZ / 200 ML

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87
601 tasting notes

This is the first of a huge assortment of Obubu Tea Farms samplers I received from Cameron B. Many Japanese tea shops are either 100g or nothing so it’s nice to be able to find samples for a change and try a bunch of teas.

Despite being a Japanese tea, this tea has more in common with Chinese green tea both in appearance and flavor. The first thing that I noticed was the whole, unbroken leaves – a departure from the mix of dust and particles that most sencha resembles – and similar to pine needle shaped Chinese tea. Ironically, this is the first Japanese tea aside from Kamairicha that I managed to brew successfully in my shiboridashi without clogging.

The dark green leaves have a mellow seaweed aroma that changes to toasted nori when heated. The first steep produced a pale yellowish-green liquor that smelled like lightly cooked Asian vegetables. The taste of the tea is like a gentle ocean breeze. Soft vegetal tones, smooth body, and silken texture. Obubu mentions chamomile notes which I picked up as well. The second infusion was similar with a whisper of sheng like earthiness. This tea lacks the grassiness and umami that you typically find in sencha. I feel like this one really allows you to taste the terroir the tea was grown on.

Flavors: Bok Choy, Earth, Seaweed, Vegetal

Preparation
175 °F / 79 °C 0 min, 45 sec 3 g 4 OZ / 128 ML
Cameron B.

Ooh, this sounds interesting!

LuckyMe

@Cameron, I think this was one of the aged senchas. Didn’t even know green tea could be aged like that. A unique tea for sure.

Mastress Alita

coughs All my green tea is aged at this point…

Lexie Aleah

Aged green tea? I’ve never heard of that either.

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92
485 tasting notes

I’m really liking the senchas from Kyoto Obubu that I picked up on Yunomi. One of their Hojichas was really good too. This might be my favorite sencha yet (I think I might have said that about the last one I tried from them too). I found this one best with a 1m first steep rather than 2m. This had decently large leaves as well, like the Sencha of the Wind. Also, some small print on the bag states “this tea is an aracha (unrefined) version of sencha, the state which tea is sold from the farm to refinement factories.” I’m pretty sure this is a misprint. I’m fairly certain sencha can’t also be aracha…maybe? If it is aracha then I’m super confused lol.

The brewed leaves smelled like nice steamed vegetables, maybe asparagus as another reviewer noted. The first steep was a bit bitter with nutty and piney notes and a sweet grassy honey finish. Reaaaally good. This one was pretty powerful as well. I’m sure it wasn’t just this tea, as I had been drinking quite a bit before this one as well, but I noticed myself just trance out listening to whatever house-type beats my brother happened to be playing for a couple minutes at a time. Good times. Next steep was less bitter, but also not quite as sweet on the finish if that makes any sense. Still grassy, nutty and piney though. Went for another couple steeps, so didn’t quite have the longevity of the Sencha of the Wind, but I’m a sucker for that strength which comes through as a bitter flavor in tea, so if I was forced to choose, I’d pick this one.

I have more from this farm coming in another Yunomi order, including a Sencha of the Summer Sun or something. I wonder what it would be like to drink a blend of Sencha of the Wind, Earth, and Sun…Sencha of Earth, Wind and Fire? Anyways…good tea from Kyoto Obubu! Recommended for sure.

Flavors: Bitter, Grass, Honey, Nutty, Pine, Sweet

Preparation
160 °F / 71 °C 1 min, 0 sec 5 g 4 OZ / 118 ML

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921 tasting notes

I have taken up fighting games again! So a bit of backstory, not sure the exact cause but a couple years ago my hands decided that playing fighting games and beat’em ups was not going to happen, all that movement was stupid painful. I gave up playing them and just delved deep into watching the pros play them at tournaments, but that seems to have changed. Ben got Killer Instinct on a whim (it has a free character that rotates so you can try it out, which is handy) and I played a bit, and what do ya know, no hand pain! Now I have to get back in shape, maybe in a year of grinding I can go to a tournament and play with the pros! Guess all the hand exercises and Ark playing paid off.

Today I continue on dreaming of spring teas (mine are still slowly making their way to me) by drinking the last of my stash from last year. Presenting Yunomi’s Obubu #4 Sencha of the Earth Spring Green Tea (2015 specifically) I love the names for Obubu’s Sencha, it is their names that has made me go along and try almost all of them, I think I have two left I have not tried yet. This tea is called this because it is made from Zairai plants, and those are tea plants grown from seeds taken from a tea plant before it was recognized as a specific cultivar. These specific plants are over 30 years old, and the strength of the earth is celebrated in the strength of the plants, because tea that tells a story is awesome in my book! They were not kidding when they said this tea is potent, the aroma is sweet like broken hay and sweetgrass with a very tiny touch of cotton (like the plant, not like the fabric) there are also green notes of course, blending edamame, bell pepper skin, and cut bamboo leaves. At the end there is a touch of dried seaweed and rice giving a bit of starchy and sea air quality to it.

I love how vibrant Sencha leaves get once steeped, they go from pine green to summer grass and its so pretty! What I don’t love is the deafening roar of the lawnmower outside destroying my ability to think, one day I will live in a place that doesn’t have grass…my yard will be moss, clover, rocks, and flowers! Anyway, the aroma of the soggy leaves is so green! It smells like crisp bamboo leaves, clover leaves and flowers, edamame, and sea air, it smells to me like summer. The liquid is light and sweet, like clovers and honey with distant cut grass and broken vegetation, it smells refreshing.

The first that that struck me about this tea is the really pleasant mouthfeel, it has body kinda like an Oolong, being thick and smooth. Usually I find Sencha to be fairly light, so this was a fun change of things. The taste starts with a blend of starchy rice and edamame with a gentle sweet quality to it, this moves onto the more expected green notes of broccoli and cut bamboo with just a subtle edge of mown grass adding a subtle bitterness. The finish is distant flowers and sea air, and I am sorry I cannot remember the name of the specific coastal flower I am thinking of, but it is light and a bit like sweet pea flower.

I steeped this tea a couple more times, jacking the heat up and flash steeping it for a double punch of intense sweetness at the front and bitterness at the middle with a lingering honey sweet finish. The thickness of the first steep stuck around which was fun, and later steeps bring out spinach and stronger ocean notes. As much as this was a spring tea it really reminds me of summer, late May when everything is lush and warm but the heat of summer has not started doing its worst yet.

For blog and photos: http://ramblingbutterflythoughts.blogspot.com/2016/05/yunomi-obubu-4-sencha-of-earth-spring.html

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