Matcha is the crown jewel of the traditional Japanese tea ceremony … a symbol of peace, harmony, and happiness. Participating in this ceremony is a spiritual experience, one that demonstrates respect for Japanese culture expressed through etiquette and grace. Partaking in the delicate and beautifully green powdered matcha tea in this way encourages connections with others and provides an occasion where everyone can relax and enjoy themselves fully, escaping the demands of the outside world.
Neither a full or loose leaf tea, matcha’s bright green appearance is accomplished by keeping the tea leaf bush in the shade and slowing down its growth and filtering light. This creates dark green leaves which are high in chlorophyll and amino acids. The leaves are then stone ground – often by hand – into a very fine powder.
Matcha’s delicate growing and processing are not the only reasons why this green powdered tea is so valued by tea drinkers, going back centuries. The nutritional content of matcha makes for a relaxing yet energizing drink. It was revered by Buddist monks in China – matcha’s origins – and has been used to relieve ailments and maintain health. Matcha was the centerpiece of ancient Japanese tea ceremonies and special occasions throughout the ages.
Widely enjoyed for its creamy delicate taste, matcha also encourages mental clarity, alertness, and enhanced mood … a result of a unique combination of amino acids and calming compounds found in very high quantities in matcha, compared to other green teas.
Here’s our favorite way to prepare 1 cup of matcha:
Heat up fresh, filtered water to 165F to 175F.
Pre-warm your matcha bowl with ¼ cup of hot water. Then empty water and wipe bowl dry with cloth or paper towel.
Use that same water to gently moisten your bamboo whisk (chasen).
Sift 2 scoops of matcha into bowl using a traditional bamboo scoop (chashaku) or 3/4 to 1 teaspoon using a regular teaspoon.
Pour in ⅓ cup of hot water (4-6 oz).
Whisk quickly and gently, moving back and forth just above the bottom of the cup and on top, breaking up the bubbles. A milk frother is also good for whisking matcha and water.
For a matcha latte, the directions are the same as described above, except use 50ml of hot water (almost 2 oz) to make a paste and add 6-8 oz of steamed (not boiled) milk over the paste. We recommend using an electric milk steamer to incorporate the milk. Then just enjoy it!