Everything You Need to Know About Japanese Tea

Japanese tea is the most common beverage consumed by many people. With a history that stretches back over centuries, the custom of tea-drinking at the family gathering and welcoming guests has been deeply rooted in a Japanese culture. It is also valued for its health and restorative properties. There are a lot more types of Japanese tea you might’ve heard of or not, however, in this guide, we will introduce the most popular worldwide, green tea.

Green tea

The term ‘Green tea’ refers to tea that has not been fermented and quickly processed to prevent oxidation. If the fermentation degree is changed, it becomes black tea or oolong tea. Typical green teas include sencha, hojicha, and matcha.

1. Sencha

80% of the tea consumed in Japan is sencha made by steaming leaves to prevent oxidation. It's a very rare method that makes both production and consumption limited to Japan. Usually consumed hot or cold, sencha is sold at supermarkets and convenience stores in various shapes, such as tea leaves, tea bags, and PET bottles to suit your drinking habits.

2. Hojicha

Hojicha is a roasted green tea with an amazingly rich aroma. It has a mild tasting, which makes it a wonderful drink to enjoy especially during the meal. Over the last 15 years, hojicha sweets and latte are experiencing a boom as people in Japan get more and more entranced by its deliciousness.

3. Matcha

Matcha is made by steaming the harvested tea leaves and processing into a very fine powder. If you want to enjoy the cup of matcha, you just need to pour hot water and whisk. While traditionally used for Japanese tea ceremony sado, matcha has now become a sought-after ingredient in a trendy flavoring in all sorts of Japanese and western sweets. Also, it is sometimes used for cooking. Mix matcha powder with soba to make tea soba or salt to enhance a tempura taste! As you can see, matcha is deeply interwoven into a Japanese food culture.

Summary

It might surprise you to learn that green tea actually has a lot more uses other than beverages and cooking. It contains catechins that have antibacterial and antiviral effects and therefore utilized for soap, shampoo and bedding products. Green tea, which is deeply rooted in Japanese culture, can be easily found in Japan in various types and it’s difficult to choose your favorite one!