The origins of Matcha can be traced back to the Tang Dynasty in China that spanned between the 7th and 10th century. During this time, tea leaves were steamed, pulverized and pressed into bricks, making their tea harvests easier to transport.
It was Eisai, a Japanese Buddhist Monk who spent the better part of his life studying Buddhism in China, that introduced this technique to Japan by bringing along with him tea seeds and the Zen Buddhist methods of preparing powdered green tea when permanently returning to Japan in 1191.
Soon after Eisai’s return to Japan, Zen Buddhists further perfectionized this unique method for cultivating the green tea plant, which is still being used today and separates Matcha from regular green tea, or green tea powders.
In short, all matcha is a green tea powder, however not all green tea powders are matcha. If you are finding cheap "matcha" for sale, there's a good chance it doesn't follow these 6 steps, crucial for the taste and health benefits of authentic matcha green tea:
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- 1. Unlike regular green tea, matcha tea leaves are shade grown to boost chlorophyll and L-theanine levels. This gives matcha a natural sweetness and vibrant green color, while boosting antioxidant levels up to 137x more than regular green tea.
- 2. Only the two leaves at the tip of each new shoot are being hand-picked. This guarantees the use of only the youngest, greenest and most tender leaves for our matcha green tea.
- 3. The finest selection of leaves are then steamed to prevent oxidation (oxidized tea leaves can be dull and stale) and are then naturally air dried.
- 4. The dried leaves are then graded according to color, texture, taste and aroma. Only the finest leaves are included in Matcha Moments.
- 5. The graded tea leaves are then de-stemmed and de-veined to reduce bitterness, then blended to produce a consistent quality tea. The tea at this stage is called 'tencha'.
- 6. After the laborious task of de-stemming and de-veining, the leaves are being hand-milled very gently between large granite wheels into the final matcha powder. This time-consuming activity, where it takes over one hour to grind 30 grams of matcha powder, is done very gently to avoid scorching of the leaves.
- 7. Finally, our matcha is sealed immediately after stone-milling in Japan, before being air shipped to Europe only days later to ensure the freshest product available.
- 8. Our matcha is being stone-ground on-demand and ordered in small batches, stone-ground on demand in Japan so we can offer you the freshest matcha experience. Enjoy!