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Mr Irie's Koucha Tea

Mr Irie's Koucha Tea


Simply put...

From the garden of the irrepressible Mr Irie this Japanese Koucha is light, bright and sweet black tea with a very distinct difference from other black teas. It is reinfusable and leaves a refreshing, gentle taste.

This tea will be delivered in our new compostable packaging >> read more  here

In more depth....

Tea Name : Koucha

Tea Maker : Mr Toshiro Irie

Origin : Fukuoka, Kyushu, Japan

Size : Two hectares

Harvest Time : Second Harvest

Cultivar : Saemadori

Plucking standard : Hand picked.  One leaf and one bud

Processing : Withered, rolled, oxidised and fired.

Experience : Light & luxuriant fragrance and profile with low astringency

Last visited by Comins : October 2017, Rob Comins

How to prepare tea [Kyusu]...

Amount of tea per bowl (200 ml): 2.5 g (1 tsp)

Water temperature: 100 / 212 

Infusion / brewing time: 2 minutes

Number of infusions: 4

How to enjoy: No sugar, no milk

Tales of the Tea Trade : Mr Toshiro Irie

Rob meant Mr Irie on his October trip to Fukuoka and was immediately captivated by his passion for soil commitment to the land.  You may remember from our social media that he even convinced Rob to taste the soil.  We are delighted to welcome three of his amazing teas to Comins 

Rob : Extract from our our book Tales of the tea trade :  

[...] Mr Toshiro started out as a fruit and vegetable farmer, but after a bout of ill health, and discovering the health-giving qualities of green tea, he set out to produce the healthiest tea he could, with no chemicals to be added. For him, this started with one thing: the soil [...]

[...] Mr Toshiro’s approach has not been the easiest path. When he started, he told me, the surrounding farmers didn’t understand about pesticides and organic cultivation, so the slopes were starting to get into bad condition. ‘Growing organically is a life choice, so we spent ve years building strongly, and over the course of five more years I finally made a tea'

[..] Mr Toshiro has control over every stage of production, undertaking the growing and picking himself and closely overseeing the processing at a nearby factory [...]

Further insight from Mr Toshiro Iries Farm 

The world needs more people like Irie-San : Many people may not be aware that the domestic [home] market for Japanese tea  is actually in decline making it more important than ever to have positive role models such as Mr Irie who will promote 'quality' over quantity as a recipe for future success.  Recently Irie-san shared with us how his goal "is to transform his whole town of Kuroki-cho into an organic-only town"  He points out that if there are new sales channels opening that can give a new start to the declining green tea industry then young farmers will get into organic. Right now, Irie san and his team are teaching young motivated producers how to do it and are willing to do even more.  Supporting gardens like this supports the growth of this important work and aside from delicious tea a better future for tea, tea farmers and the planet.  

Japanese black tea?  ‘Koucha’ means ‘red’ tea in Japanese. ‘Red’ tea is the Chinese word what we in the West know as Black tea. As Japan is heavily influenced by its close neighbour China, this is why they choose to describe it this way.  Japanese black tea isn’t known widely outside Japan, but there is enormous potential because of how different it is. You’ll find that this black tea is quite different from those produced in other countries such as India. This has to do with the different tea cultivars used, as well as Japan’s climate, soil conditions and processing methods.

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