Sencha green tea is a popular Japanese green tea. It is the most highly produced tea in Japan, making up to 80% of the total production. Sencha is a yellow tea brewed from the top buds and leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant. To prepare the tea, you need to brew the tea leaves in hot water. It is full of folic acid, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, catechins, caffeine, and other active anti-oxidants which help in fighting diseases. Sencha green tea has a lot of health benefits including; reducing the risk of cancer, improving the immune system, increasing mental alertness and agility, lowering blood pressure, reducing the risk of obesity, preventing signs of old age, boosting energy level, stimulating cognition and maintaining body hydration. It has a light, sweet smell and slightly bitter taste. There are various types of sencha green tea depending on the time of harvest, and the methods used in processing the tea leaves. They include the following;
It is also called new tea. It is the first harvest of sencha green tea. It is usually harvested in Japan’s spring season. This tea is popular because it has a very concentrated, rich flavor. Since it is from a fresh harvest and the leaves do not spend much time in storage the leaves are packed with more nutrients and amino acids than other seasons. The leaves are brighter and fresher and the tea is sweeter, healthier and more aromatic.
- Asamushi Sencha
To make this tea, the plant from which sencha tea is made, camellia sinensis, is lightly steamed for a short while. This light steaming allows the color and nutrients of the leaves to remain intact .The process helps to retain the color and natural flavor of sencha tea which is often lost after harvest. Asamushi sencha has a vibrant smell and an earthy, sweet taste. Even though it takes a lot of effort and precision to make it, the end result is light, clear liquor that is worth the trouble.
- Fukamushi Sencha
This tea is made by steaming sencha leaves for a longer period than normal. Depending on personal preference, the leaves could be steamed up to three times longer than the standard time. The result is a darker looking tea with a mild taste and pleasant smell. Prolonged steaming infuses more moisture into the tea leaves and makes them softer. The leaves appear as tiny particles mixed with needles.
- Chumushi Sencha
This tea is a mix of fukamushi and asamushi sencha teas. It is medium steamed. It is the most common way that sencha teas are made. It has a full, sweet, buttery taste and a nice smell and it is yellowish-green in color.