Can you imagine some people have a keen palate that can tell the growing region of a tea? That’s happening in Japan now.
It is the season of 闘茶会 (pronounced as Toh Cha Kai) which means “tea fight” in direct translation.
It is a competition for tea connoisseurs and they have to identify harvest seasons, cultivar, and the growing region only by looking, smelling and tasting. Winners of regional competitions go to the prefectural competition, and only those winners of prefectural competitions proceed to the prestigious national competition in September. Our tea blender won the national competition in 1986.
Green tea is indeed a part of Japanese culture and the pursue of polishing skills has no end.