The Benifuki red tea is a quite innovative Japanese product considering its origin from a country know for a great green tea production. Besides around the 80% of Japanese tea yield is focused on green tea the producer are increasing the experimentation in other tea kinds like this red tea made of fully oxidized leaves. Anyway the country of Japan isn’t totally new in other kinds of tea, in fact, it makes several experiments about the tea processing during its domination on the Taiwan island in the first half of twentieth century. From these years of experiments the Japanese producer decided to adopt a camelia assamica varietal imported from the Formosa’s island to produce their own red teas. Because of this decision you can find some similarities between the aromas and tastes of fully oxidized tea from Japan and Taiwan.
During the tasting time this tea surprises your palate with an intense tropical fruit sweetness capable of persisting for quite long in the aftertaste. Besides this taste similar to the ones you can find in Taiwanese red teas the Benifuki has a low tannic presence and some sour aspects similar to the one into some citrus. In the end, in the aftertaste, you can also feel a minty refreshing effect like it happens in other red teas. The Benifuki tends to release quickly their flavors and, as we said before, it has many affinities with the red Taiwanese teas so we invite you to compare it with our old tree red tea in order to understand better its innovative character in Japanese production.
Place of origin
After the harvest the leaves wither under the sunlight for a certain period of time depending on the tea master wisdom before going through a bending phase. The leaves are pressed and rolled to mix the vegetal juices in their and so cause the beginning of the oxidation process. In this case the tea leaves are exposed to a progressive increase of temperature during the oxidation phase and, after the leaf has reached its typical dark brown color, the last humidity is dried out. After some days the tea is ready to be consumed.
We invite you to brew this tea in the traditional Chinese style (gong fu cha) in order to extract more from your leaves. Following this preparation you could use 4,5 grams of leaves (about 2 teaspoons) in a gaiwan of 100 ml so you can obtains more infusions with different flavors. After a brief rinse of the leaves in a 85°C water you can go with a first infusion of 10 seconds and, after that, at the same water temperature, you can do multiple infusion adding 10 seconds every steeping time (10 – 20 – 30 …)
These leaves could be steep about 5 times.
To prepare the tea in the western style we suggest 2 grams of leaves (about 1 teaspoons) in a 150 ml cup with 85°C water for a steeping time of one minute and a half.
The tea could be filtered if you want to avoid some little piece of the leaves during the tasting time and also the steeping time we recommend here could be modify on your personal preferences.
We recommend you to store this tea in a dry and cool place avoiding the direct sun light on the leaves.