Mandarin has much more elegant flavour than orange, with its stronger, sweet notes making it more enjoyable than oranges, which tend to be sourer. Mikan is a popular species of mandarin in Japan (originating from China), and its dried peel is often used in Chinese cuisine. Here, it flavours this Fukujuen Mikan Sencha.
Steeping a 2g tea bag in 200 ml of 75°C water for 90 seconds yields a pale greenish yellow liquor with the pleasant slight seaweed-like smells of some quality green teas. Each sip has a mellow vegetal brothy umami flavour from the sencha before the sweet citrus notes from mandarin emerge in the background of the body to gently scent the tea. A slight sharpness from the mandarin peel appears in the tail before leaving only the mellow sweetness of refreshing citrus on the palate.
Subsequent infusions at the same temperature and time have a more pronounced bitterness from the mandarin peel and more astringency. This contrasts with the mellow sweetness of the first infusion where the sencha is the focus with complementing, not competing, flavours of mandarin.
This box of Fukujuen Mikan Sencha contained 5 tea bags. The tea originated in Japan and was purchased in Uji, Kyoto, Japan in 2015.