Matcha Tea



With its relaxing and focusing effect, matcha is the crown of traditional Japanese tea ceremonies. It is an excellent ground green tea, and it meets with the consumer in its powdered form with a lively green color, a slightly grassy odor.
 
Let me go around the production of matcha tea by starting from the plantation. Camellia sinensis are tea plants form of the matcha, and around the middle of the April, reed screens are stretched onto them. The idea is to prevent the sunlight from increasing chlorophyll content and lower the bitterness by increasing the amount of amino acid theanine responsible for the taste of the matcha. Also, the leaves that want to catch the decreasing sunlight often become thinner as they enlarge, making them appear brighter green. At the very beginning of May, after 20 days of shading, newly matured 5-6 leaves are picked up by hand premiumly. Then they are immediately taken to the processing facility. As the first step, they are steaming for 15-20 seconds to prevent further oxidation to enhance green color and freshness. This step is one of the reasons why Japanese green tea differs from the other teas. After that, steamed leaves are dried by flowing air that continuously circulates, and the stems and veins are cut off before the drying process ends. The remaining soft part is called ‘Tencha’. The final step of processing is to grind tencha leaves into matcha powder on a stone mill.

In the 90's, it is started to consume matcha in ice cream, and in 2005, a worldwide coffee brand started to produce matcha latte. So, the world became aware of other ways of consumption, and matcha went beyond to be a traditional japan ceremony tea. Unfortunately, as matcha becomes a trend, the demand has been increased, and focus on quality shifted to profit. Over time, handpicking left its place to machine harvesting, and products are reaped more than once in a year instead of one. This results in the production of lower quality and bitter leaves. 

The fact is that traditional matcha, which has a highly intense taste and aroma, has a bad combination with milk or sugar, this result in traditional matcha demand stirs down.