Matcha tea is a special variety of green tea originating from Japan, which has gained popularity worldwide in recent years due to its numerous health benefits and rich taste.
It is made from green tea leaves that have been ground into fine powder, and is traditionally used in the Japanese tea ceremony. Unlike other varieties of green tea, matcha tea leaves are grown in the shade during the final weeks before harvesting to increase their chlorophyll and amino acid content, giving them their distinctive vibrant green color and sweet, earthy flavor.
One of the reasons why matcha tea has become so popular worldwide is its high antioxidant content, known to help prevent cellular damage and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. Additionally, matcha tea contains a significant amount of caffeine, making it an excellent choice for those seeking a natural alternative to coffee to boost their energy and focus.
It can be enjoyed in various ways, from the traditional Japanese tea ceremony to modern beverage and dessert creations. Some popular options include matcha tea lattes, fruit smoothies with matcha tea, and matcha tea ice cream.
What are the different grades of matcha tea?
There are two main grades, distinguished by factors such as origin, cultivation method, grinding grade, and production process:
- Ceremonial Grade Matcha Tea: This is the highest quality variety of matcha tea. It is characterized by its sweet, smooth, delicate flavor and vibrant green color. It is made from the youngest and tenderest green tea leaves and is slowly ground into an ultra-fine powder using millstones. In other words, it is produced using the finest parts of the plant and through very careful harvesting.
- Culinary Grade Matcha Tea: This variety of matcha tea is used in cooking for making desserts, smoothies, and other dishes. It is less expensive than ceremonial grade, but still offers a delicious taste and intense green color. It is made from slightly older tea leaves, giving it a more bitter flavor compared to higher-grade varieties.
Another important factor to consider is whether the tea is organic. This means it has been grown, produced, and processed using sustainable and environmentally-friendly agricultural and manufacturing practices. Organic matcha tea is, therefore, produced sustainably, using organic farming techniques to avoid the use of pesticides and other chemicals, responsible water and energy management, and the protection of natural plant habitats.
Furthermore, producers of organic matcha tea often work with organic quality certifications and seals that demonstrate compliance with international sustainability standards. By purchasing organic matcha tea, consumers can be assured they are supporting sustainable and environmentally-respectful production practices.
Types of ceremonial grade matcha tea
Within ceremonial grade matcha tea, you can find different qualities, in the case of Matcha & CO, all of them are organic and originate from Japan:
Original Matcha Tea from Matcha & CO is obtained from the top leaves of the plant during the autumn season. It has a high antioxidant content, a greener color, and a milder flavor. Suitable for beverages with animal or plant-based milk or juices.
Premium Matcha Tea from Matcha & CO: Obtained from the top leaves of the plant during the spring season. It is of ceremonial grade and has a high chlorophyll and antioxidant content. It has an intense green color and less bitterness. Suitable for consumption with water, animal, or plant-based milk.
The Matcha Reserve Tea from Matcha & CO is obtained from plants located at the highest part of the plantation and from the top leaves during the spring season. It is a limited edition with the least bitterness and a more delicate taste of all qualities. Perfect for special occasions and for consumption with water.