The whole plantation is shaded for 3 weeks before the harvest of Gyokuro. This method helps to get tender and softer leaves with more amino acid and chlorophyll in it. After picking and withering comes the kneading and rubbing process. By the special hand movements the leaves separate, this is how the Gyokuro is formed. During this method the smaller, finer leaves stick together and form the cylinder shaped Dango tea. They sort out these amazing pieces from the Gyokuro one by one. This type of tea is only made in very small quantity. According to Mr. Yoshida it would be difficult to make this tea in large quantity, because it’s made accidentally. Two cultivars are used for Dangocha: Samidori and Ujihikari.
This tea which is made of the really tender leaves contains a plenty of active ingredients, such as Vitamin-C, Vitamin-E, catechin, caffeine and other antioxidants.
Mr. Yoshida recommends also trying and consuming the dry leaves as a snack. Another way of enjoying it is after some brew, simply taste the steeped leaves with rice and soy sauce with a touch of salt.
First infusion: 60 degrees, 5 minutes. Spinach, with light whipped cream, vegetable mousse, lightly roasted salmon in the fragrance. Peas, edamame beans, little citrus and long lingering aftertaste. Second steeping: 80 degrees, 45 sec. Elegant flowers, dandelion leaf, acacia flower. Third steeping was rich and round with pine and flowers. Each steeping revealed very different, complex notes.
Quantity: 5-6 grams per 180ml
Water temperature: 60ºC, 80ºC. From fresh spring, mineral water or filtered water
Brewing time: 5 min, 45… seconds
Infusions: 3-4 x