July 25, 2013

2013 Jukro Hwagae Valley Jungjak

In a recent episode of Tea Goober we talked about Jukro,s 2013 Sejak. Now it,s time to try Jukro,s 2013 Jungjak. Sejak grade tea is usually made from the second flush, while Jungjak is made from the third flush. The first flush is called Ujeon, but who can afford that? Not me! If you would be so kind as to click on the link above you will see the difference in the dry leafs appearance. The Jungjak grade is noticeably thicker and chunkier. The dry leafs aroma is heavier with the smell of pine, grain, honey and slightly herbaceous.

Park Jong Il,s tea ware has such personality. It,s hard to put my finger on it but they seem to be kinda whimsical. From this angle it reminds me of a Carp gasping for air. Maybe he is hungry for some good tea.

Park Jong Il,s cup has gone through quite a change in appearance. The interior is speckled with tiny little flecks of discoloration and blisters. I like this pot and cup very much.

The teas flavor reflects the leafs aroma very well. Grain, honey, slightly piney or sappy and herbaceous. Mouth feel is full and round, no sharp corners here. Like Jukro,s 2013 Sejak, it has a noticeable creaminess. And like Jukro,s 2013 Sejak, the cereal or malted grain flavors, which I associate with Korean green tea is barely noticeable.

I,m not gonna go on and on describing the teas flavor as it progresses through consecutive infusions.

The color of the soup is darker than the Sejak grade. Much heavier and richer. I enjoy both Sejak and Jungjak but if I had to choose one or the other, it would be Jungjak. I like big flavors and aromas.

If you are interested this tea can be found at Good Green Tea. It,s not cheap. I guess that goes without saying though. Korean teas never are.

July 17, 2013

2013 Jukro Jiri Mountain Bahlyocha

A couple of months ago Sam of Good Green Tea asked as he was preparing to leave for Korea if there was any particular teas I would like him to bring back with him. This is one of the two teas I requested. Over the past several years I have had quite a few Korean Yellow teas and have liked all of them. All the different producers seem to have their own unique way of making their oxidized teas and the flavors can vary considerably. I had never had Jukro,s Bahlyocha before but knew I was in for a treat, as all their teas are excellent.

Typical packaging for Jukro, Paper outer bag, inside the paper bag is a sealed foil bag, inside the foil bag is a wax paper bag.

Even though summer is in full swing here in Austin I can,t help it, I've got to try this tea. Normally this time of day in Austin (93 degrees) an ice cold Shiner Bock is my beverage of choice.

The appearance of the dry leaf tells me what I,m in for. The dry leafs aroma is heavy with deep, dark chocolate, notes of honey, malted grain and spice.. With the heavier oxidation of the leaf the floral aspects are pushed to the background but are still there for the observant, mostly in the later infusions.

The dry leaf is very thick and chunky. Which tells me there is lots of juicy goodness to be had. Even though I have yet to taste this tea I know without a shadow of a doubt that I,m really, really, going to like it a lot. All the tell, tale sign,s are there.

Here,s a tea that,s right up my alley. Jukro,s Bahlyocha has a very rich and full mouth feel. Malted grain, honey, toasted nut,s, dark chocolate with just the slightest suggestion of spice. Makes my palette very happy. This tea seems to be more durable than other Bahlyocha,s I've had, easily 5-6 infusions. The flavors don,t wash out easily, they go on and on without dropping any of the grain and cocoa aspects.

I remember when I used to be so meticulous with weights and measurements when it came to brewing tea. Over the past couple of years I have become less obsessive about it all. I don,t weigh anything anymore, just a few good pinches of tea goes into the pot. Add water and observe how the leaves are opening up. When fully saturated, that's the signal that everything is good to go. There are times when I don,t get it quite right but no matter the situation it,s always easily correctable. More or less water, or longer or shorter steeping s, makes everything right again. This all has to do with how many infusions you get from any tea.

As of today, Sam hasn't updated his site and this tea isn't offered yet. But I,m sure if you ask nicely he would be more than happy to hook you up with some of this delicious tea.

July 14, 2013

Jukro 2013 Jungjak Balhyocha

Sam,s back from Korea and as promised he brought some very nice teas home with him. Sometime later I,ll write a post for each of these. Very curious about the Jungjak as well as their Balhyocha.