Yesterday, the Morimoto Shincha 2020 arrived! Waiting for it, we were very excited and our feeling told us that this year’s Shincha from Morimotos the would be good. For weeks, we have been in touch with Haruyo and Shigeru Morimoto, and are talking about our reservations for this year’s first harvest. Due to the travel restrictions, unfortunately we had to postpone this year’s visit of the tea gardens. All the more, we are thankful for the strong connection to our partners, keeping together also in difficult situations and supporting each other even if we cannot meet directly for a while.
The Morimotos’ harvest started on April 20 this year. On that day, they harvested the Saki Midori for the Morimoto Shincha. Last year, the Saki Midori leaves were very firm, so they shaded the Saki Midori in 2019. Among other effects, this makes the leaves a bit softer. This year, the fresh sprouts were so tender and beautifully green that the Saki Midori for the Morimoto Shincha 2020 could grow under the open sky (roji). Each year, the Morimotos decide which tea garden parcels they shade and which they let grow under the open sky, each depending on the condition of the fresh sprouts and on how much power the bushes have. Luckily, before the first harvest of 2020 there was enough rain and the Morimotos’ tea bushes are bursting with green power. During the growth period it was relatively cool, so the harvest start was on average or maybe slightly later, and the plants grew only slowly. Slow growth always makes the taste a bit fuller.
In January and February there also were some very cold days. In this period, the tea plants are resting, so the Morimotos speak of a positive effect. Thanks to the cold in the rest period, the new tea has a very deep flavor. Later, around April 25, 26, that is when the new harvest had already started, there were a few more cool nights, which caused frost damage at some places. But overall, this year’s first harvest is going very well.
On April 23, they harvested the Kabuse Yutaka Midori for the Morimoto Shincha 2020. The tea bush variety Yutaka Midori has very firm, thick leaves, so it is common to shade this variety. Morimotos also decided to shade their Yutaka Midori bushes for the Morimoto Shincha for approximately two weeks.
Asked whether there is a specific nuance of taste or flavor this year, Haruyo writes us that she noticed that the teas have a soft, floral fragrance this year.
When the Morimoto Shincha arrived here yesterday, of course, we had to try right away. Just opening the package, a sweet fragrance pours out which we only know from Morimoto tea in this way. It almost reminds us of vanilla. At the same time, the Morimoto Shincha 2020 has the wonderful Shincha freshness: pure spring.