Our award-winning Ceremonial Matcha comes from an esteemed Japanese tea producer with a 150 year history based in Shizuoka. They produce high quality organic and traditional teas on their plantations in Kagoshima, Aichi and Kyoto Prefectures. The current batch of tea is from blended harvests from Kyoto, which were ground in November 2020.
Authentic matcha is produced by shading the first flush tea bushes for 3 weeks, similarly to gyokuro (玉露) green tea production. This shading process limits catechins but increases theanine in the leaves, decreasing bitterness and adding umami. The leaves are then harvested, steamed and dried to make tencha (碾茶). Tencha differs from most other Japanese teas as it is left flat to dry and crumble, rather than kneaded, after which the stalks and stems may be removed. The final step for Ceremonial Matcha is to grind the leaves into a fine powder using granite stone mills.
Our Ceremonial Matcha has a flavour that is robust, very creamy and ‘green’ tasting. While having a balanced profile, it leans towards more savoury and umami flavours. Having a full flavour makes it ideal for usucha or thin matcha, which is the most common way outside of formal tea ceremonies. We also sell a matcha which is slightly lighter but more complex which is ideal for Koicha or ‘thick’ matcha.
As matcha tea powder is very light, less than a gram (0.7) is needed per 70ml of hot water. Usually, matcha is measured with a matcha spoon (chashaku 茶杓) into a bowl (chawan 茶碗). Very warm water (around 70°C) is then added and briskly mixed with a matcha whisk (chasen 茶筅) until frothy. Alternatively you can use any vessel and whisk or even a drinks shaker; the important point is to properly mix the water and powder completely.
Matcha powder is delicate and should be stored in its packet and tin, away from strong smells and light to keep its flavour and freshness. This way it will last a few months, and you will be able to tell from the vibrancy of its green colour how fresh it is.