Today, I will be focusing on an experimental product from the Arakai Estate in Bellthorpe, Australia. This is the Pan Roasted Premium Green Tea. This product is not currently being sold by Arakai Estate. I introduced the Arakai Estate in detail in my earlier review of their Spring Flush 2016 Premium Black Tea. Check out that review or their website to learn more about this young, yet ambitious and successful estate.
Considering that Arakai Estate grows Japanese cultivars of tea bushes, I am expecting this pan roasted green tea to be comparable to Kamairicha green teas of Japan. That is good news to me, as a good Kamairicha makes for one of my favorite styles of green tea.
Let’s get to the review…
The dry leaves have a uniform dark charcoal color with a green tint. The leaves are rolled, and fairly uniform in size. There are no apparent buds, and a few bare stems in the mix. Based on the size of the dry leaves, I expect them to unfurl into unbroken, individual leaves and large leaf fragments. The appearance gives me the impression that there was much care and attention put into the production processes. The aroma is sweet and inviting, with scents of brown sugar, sweet cream, vanilla, toasted oats, and a light touch of orchid.
Nine grams of dry leaves were placed in an 18 ounce (530 ml) cast-iron tetsubin teapot, and infused with 175°F water for 2:00 minutes.
The liquid has a green-yellow color. The aroma has scents of steamed spinach, with lighter scents of sweet cream and orchid. The body is medium, with a velvety texture. There is a very unique, creamy astringency. That description sounds strange, but I do not know how else to describe this characteristic. It almost reminds me of plain kefir. The taste has notes of steamed spinach, complimented by undertones of brown sugar, vanilla, and orchid. The floral character carries into the aftertaste, finishing with the familiar quality of Japanese Kamairicha green teas.
The infused leaves have a pale forest green color, with touches of reddish-brown, indicating that the leaves had some oxidation occur during production. As expected, the mix consists of mostly unbroken, individual leaves and large fragments. There are no buds in the mix, and a few bare stems. This is another fun tea to play with since there are plenty of unbroken leaves to observe the sizes and shapes of. The leaves have a smooth, yet durable feel. The aroma has scents of steamed spinach, wet autumn leaves, orchid, and a light touch of vanilla.
The Pan Roasted Premium Green Tea from Arakai Estate has an interesting combination of characteristics, touching on aspects of floral oolong teas and Japanese Kamairicha style green teas. The texture of this tea is very unique, to say the least. There were several moments during this review where I had a hard time describing what I was experiencing, notably the type of floral description to give and the unique astringency.
It is apparent that the people at Arakai Estate truly made their best efforts to carefully handle, roll, and roast this tea during production. I have a sample of the Pan Roasted Premium Black Tea also waiting for me here. If it is half as interesting to review as the Pan Roasted Premium Green Tea, then I better choose a day where my senses are prepared for the challenge. As always, I am looking forward to it!
Thanks again to the Collins family at Arakai Estate for giving me the opportunity to try this experimental product. Keep up the excellent work!