For those of you who aren’t familiar with Bancha tea – it is a “lower” grade of Sencha tea harvested from the same trees that produce Sencha tea in the later seasons of the year. This produces a different tasting tea from a typical Sencha. And even though it’s different – it is still very good!
Bancha tea is a Japanese green tea that is an “every day” tea – where as a higher quality Sencha tea would be consumed less often and usually for the ceremony of Senchadō. But both are delicious in their own way.
This Bancha tea has a vegetative quality that is unlike any Sencha I’ve tasted – it is not grassy, it is not quite like steamed vegetables or buttered vegetables. But it IS vegetal in nature… and difficult to describe because I’ve not quite tasted one like it. There IS a buttery note to it that seems to intensify as I continue to sip it. It is soft and creamy and quite yummy.
It also has a very pleasant and toasty sweetness to it. It reminds me quite a bit of a Genmaicha tea without the toasted rice. So it is slightly less roasty-toasty and does not possess that same rice sweetness that Genmaicha does. My palate also detects a slight floral note to this tea.
Starwest Botanicals describes this tea as
Bancha tea or Camellia sinensis is a traditional Japanese green tea typically consumed as an everyday beverage. While there is some variation, this loose leaf tea is a yellowish brown color when brewed. With less caffeine and tannins than many other black or green teas, Bancha tea has a light, slightly sweet flavor that some describe as toasty.
This is an excellent Bancha tea – and it is a great value too! It is an extremely enjoyable green tea – one that I would consider myself lucky to sip every day!