Highly Commended at The Leafies 2022 by the UK Tea Academy
A sweet, fruity and beautifully balanced black tea from the Iwanaga Tea Garden in Kumamoto, Japan. This is where tea grower Tomoko Monnai cultivates tea organically, without any chemical pesticides or fertilisers. She also uses native cultivars (grown by her father over 70 years ago) which are naturally resistant to weather changes, disease and pests. The tea itself is aged for two years to enhance its sensational flavour profiles and aroma.
Ingredients: Black tea
This variant is currently sold out.
read the leaves
step 1: leaves
For one cup, measure out 4 grams into your teapot or brew mug.
step 2: water
Heat 250ml of water to 95°C.
step 3: time
Pour your heated water over the leaves and steep for 4 minutes.
Grown from a native and rarely-seen cultivar, and produced using exemplary artisan production techniques, this organic, Japanese black tea has been aged for two years to bring out the distinctive flavour profile of peach and stone fruit aroma.
Founded in 1960, Iwanaga Tea Garden is a female-run, organic farm in Mamihara, Kumamoto prefecture, which sits between Kumamoto City and Nobeoka City, Miyazaki.
The Iwanaga Tea Garden in Mamihara, Kumamoto.
Tea farmer Tomoko Monnai at the Iwanaga Tea Garden in Kumamoto, Japan.
Tomoko Monnai is a third-generation farmer and the grand-daughter of the founder. The farm traditionally produced pan-fired green tea, but Monnai wanted to apply her exemplary, low-input production techniques to the production of high quality black teas.
A traditional Japanese tea kneading machine at Iwanaga Tea Garden.
Tea-making tools used by Tomoko, and her father and grandfather before her.
After spending time learning the art of black tea production in other parts of Japan, Taiwan and China, Tomoko began to produce some truly outstanding – and in many cases award-winning – black teas. Iwanaga Ichigo 2022 is one of them.
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