Hand-picked and cared for the same way the highest grades of ceremonial matcha are, gyokuro in Japan are typically reserved for special occasions, whereas senchas are an "everyday" tea. The gyokuro industry relies on a similar set of grading standards as matcha, with price correlating 1:1 with quality. The majority of serious gyokuro producers specialize in only gyokuro and matcha and sell gyokuro at every grade (which enables them to sell their entire crop of tea).
The method for brewing gyokuro differs quite a bit from brewing senchas. Designed to extract a thick, viscous broth with no bitterness, this method takes a bit of time, but it will be unlike any other tea experience you have had.
The highest grades of gyokuro have high amounts of umami; a rich brew and long finish; and uniform, needle-like tea leaves with a beautiful sheen. We carry just one gyokuro from our renowned producer in Fukuoka, Japan: the highest grade they produce. It is such a treat that I am honored to be able to share with you.