Nagasaki, located in the Kyushu region of Japan, is known for its tea production, particularly sencha and guricha.
Tea cultivation in Nagasaki dates back to the 17th century when Portuguese traders introduced tea to the region. However, it was during the Edo period (1603-1868) that tea production in Nagasaki truly flourished. The mountainous terrain, mild climate, and volcanic soil in Nagasaki create favorable conditions for tea cultivation.
Sencha, one of the most popular types of Japanese green tea, is produced in various areas of Nagasaki, including Shimabara and Goto. The leaves are harvested and then steamed to halt oxidation, preserving their vibrant green color and fresh flavor. Nagasaki's sencha is known for its grassy taste, refreshing aroma, and a touch of sweetness. The mountainous environment and unique terroir contribute to the distinctive character of Nagasaki's sencha.
Guricha, also known as tamaryokucha or "curly green tea," is another tea variety cultivated in Nagasaki. Unlike sencha, guricha goes through a unique processing method where the leaves are rolled, giving them a curly appearance. This rolling process results in a tea with a balanced flavor profile, combining the grassy notes of sencha with the subtle sweetness of bancha. Nagasaki's guricha is sought after for its unique taste and visual appeal.
The mountain tea character of Nagasaki refers to the distinct flavors and aromas of teas produced in the region. The mountainous terrain, combined with the region's volcanic soil, cool and breezy climate, and ample rainfall, creates an ideal environment for tea cultivation. The natural shading provided by the mountainous landscape enhances the tea leaves' flavors, resulting in teas with a rich, complex profile.
Tea farmers in Nagasaki take great pride in their cultivation techniques and the region's tea heritage. They carefully nurture the tea plants to ensure the teas maintain their unique mountain tea character usiing organic compost and special shading techniques for their guricha and Sencha . The teas produced in Nagasaki are highly regarded for their quality and reflect the region's natural beauty and favorable growing conditions.