Gyokuro is the finest grade of Japanese green tea and, is high in caffeine and amino acids and less in catechin. This combination of components brings mellow umami, sweetness and mildly astringent aroma in gyokuro. The tea field must be completely covered and shaded from sun light. Generally, the process starts on the 88th day from the first day of spring and continues at least 20 days. This helps to produce theanine in amino acids, which enhances umami. Gyokuro is generally expensive as a very-labour-intensive work involves.
Sencha is the most common Japanese green tea. Sencha with good quality will be recognized from appearance as it includes thin and shiny tea leaves as well as pointy ones. The needle-like leaves represent new buds and are carefully rolled. As a result, tea can keep fresh aroma and green colour.
Hojicha is roasted sencha or bancha (coarse tea). It has mild nutty flavour and the colour of tea is brown unlike other green tea. As parching process reduces tannin and caffeine, some people who prefer green tea with low in caffeine may select this tea. In Japan, we offer hojicha especially to infants and elderly.
Finely ground sencha has less theanine and more catechin compared with matcha. As sencha is ground, 100% of its nutrients can consume. Yamakai in our selection has methyled catechin which is said that eases symptom of hay fever such as runny nose and sneezing. It will be effective about 1 to 3 hours after consumption. However, drinking this tea regularly is said to help develop immunity.