What is Gyokuro?
Gyokuro (玉露) – the highest grade Japanese loose leaf tea – is as unique as its name – ‘dew drop’. In contrast to making shaded Sencha, where the covers for blocking direct sunshine are spread directly on the plant, Gyokuro is grown under a special construction that allows more space for the tea leaves to steep out. The tea plant is shaded for about three weeks, during which fresh spring tea leaves develop a distinctive rich flavor and sweet smell. After the harvest the leaves are processed with great care, the result of which an emerald-green tea of unique beauty. Due to the level of care and attention needed to produce Gyokuro it is a rather rare tea – less than 1 percent of all tea made in Japan is Gyokuro.
Brewed tea, that gives off a distinctive fragrance, is traditionally served in little cups which makes enjoying Gyokuro even more special.
Akihiro “Akky” Kita is our president and lead farmer here at Obubu. His desire to make this tea available to the general public is the foundation of Kyoto Obubu Tea Farms. In college, Akky took up a part-time job as a farmhand in Wazuka, and fell in love with the tea of this region. He made the decision then to leave college and devote his time to mastering the art of tea farming. Recognizing the need for independent farmers like himself to spread the joy of drinking Japanese tea, he travels each year during the winter off-season to bring Japanese tea to people all over the world.
Imanishi Tezuka aka “Tecchan” is a young tea farmer in Wazuka, Kyoto. His family has been making tea here for 5 generations. At the age of 25 Tecchan has taken over the family tea business and now is looking after both: tea farming and tea production in his factory.
Hosoi Kenta from Hosoi-Nouen is a very talented farmer in Wazuka whom we are very glad and thankful to be able to collaborate with.