Matcha is a finely milled green tea powder made from specially cultivated green tea leaves grown in the shade and processed to remove the stems and veins. Matcha does have caffeine, but it's also full of antioxidants and l-theanine, an amino acid that promotes relaxation. The vibrant color and fresh, non-acidic taste of matcha combined with its calming properties make it a great alternative to coffee.
In summer, matcha can be enjoyed cold, and Japan's premier tea producers, Ippodo Tea from Kyoto, recommends 2 simple ways to prepare cold matcha:
Matcha on Ice:
- Wide mouth bowl
- 1 teaspoon of matcha from Ippodo - sifted
- 2 oz (1/4 of a cup) of hot water (80° celsius) that is cooler than boiling (100° celsius)
- Small cubes of ice
Instructions: Scoop the matcha into a wide mouth bowl. Add the hot water at noted temperature and whisk for 15 seconds in an "M" shape. Pour the matcha into a heat resistant glass, add ice, enjoy immediately!
- Lidded glass jar or travel flask
- 1/4 teaspoon of matcha from Ippodo - sifted
- .37 cups of chilled water or 6 tablespoons
Instructions: Scoop the matcha into your jar or flask. Add the chilled water. Then twist the lid on tight and shake vigorously until the matcha is suspended in the water and appears frothy. You can add additional ice if desired. You can drink immediately!
The above method is particularly great for people who do not have a traditional matcha whisk at home.
For serious matcha drinkers, we're happy to carry this one-of-a-kind travel matcha set by Kohchosai Kosuga from Kyoto Japan. This elegant matcha set comes with a hand-carved, hand-lacquered bamboo matcha bowl, a handmade bamboo matcha wisk and scoop, plus a bamboo matcha powder container. A hand-woven bamboo lidded basket holds all these elements inside for easy storage and travel.
To add more formality to your tea experience, we recommend placing a 'kekkai' to mark your ceremonial space. Kekkai can be decorative piece in the home, but originally their purpose was to create a border of space during a formal ceremony. Our kekkai (28'' x 11'') is from Kanazawa, Ishikawa prefecture and made from smoked paulownia wood (kiri wood). These are one-of-a-kind pieces with unique grain and knots, so we encourage you to visit us in person purchase!
We hope these tips allow you to enjoy matcha at home or on-the-go!
For those needing more matcha at home, Ippodo's Matcha varieties can be purchased here and more will arrive this summer!