Matcha Basics

Matcha is a finely powdered tea made by grinding tencha (tea leaves) in a mill. Unlike green tea, where the extract is drunk, matcha is consumed whole.

Tencha is grown with limited sunlight exposure. The entire plantation is covered before harvesting and then dried without being rubbed like other green teas such as sencha and gyokuro. This produces a bright green, thin, open tea leaf high in L-theanine and chlorophyll.

When drinking Matcha, generally use 1 g per 100 ml as a standard and adjust according to taste. Use more when drinking with milk, because Matcha tends to be overpowered by the flavor of milk. In the Japanese ceremonial way of drinking Matcha, 2 g is used to make a thicker concentration of about 60 ml.

• Check out our matcha recipes
• Learn how to make ceremonial matcha

Matcha can be kept for six months from the date of manufacture, if it is unopened. If you do not plan on using your matcha for a while, store it in the refrigerator or freezer.

• Learn more on How to Prepare and Store Matcha

Ceremonial matcha is a high grade of matcha used in tea ceremonies, known as "Otemae" in Japan. All of our matcha is ceremonial, produced using only the first-grade matcha — rich in L-theanine and full of umami (savory) flavor and richness.

Matcha has fine particles, which tend to clump together due to static electricity. The higher grade matcha ground by a millstone has smaller particles than the higher grade matcha, so the matcha will be less likely to clump. If you use a sieve, though, it will prevent lumps from forming and the tea will taste better when it's prepared.

The biggest difference in quality of matcha is the time of harvest. In Uji area, matcha is harvested in three seasons: first harvest from May to June, second harvest from June to July, and autumn harvest from October onward. All our matcha is the ceremonial grade of first harvest tea.

The most important one is catechin, which is noted for its antioxidant power. It is a type of polyphenol that is the source of the astringency of tea. The next most important is L-theanine, an amino acid that forms the umami (savory) flavor of matcha and also has a relaxing effect on the body and mind.

Vitamins are also noteworthy. Unlike ordinary tea, matcha is drunk whole, making it easy to consume fat-soluble vitamin E (α-tocopherol), which is not easily extracted into water.

• Learn about matcha's health benefits

Comparing the same quality of tencha (raw tea leaves) ground by a millstone with that ground by a machine, the millstone grinds the material finer, resulting in a white finish. Not only with matcha but generally, the finer particles make for whiter colors due to diffused reflection.

Product related

All the raw materials used for our matcha can be traced back to their place of cultivation. We know whether or not a plantation has used pesticides, what kind of pesticides they used, and when. Pesticide residue tests are conducted regularly to ensure best practices have been followed and to check for contamination from nearby farms. We provide matcha that complies with the pesticide residue standards of the countries where it is sold.

For organic matcha, absolutely no pesticides are used.

It is prohibited to sell products with the USDA mark affixed outside the U.S. Since our organic matcha is sold outside of the U.S., we do not affix the mark to our products.

Oxygen absorbers have a long-term effect on matcha flavor, but it is known that they do not affect matcha fading. In addition, oxygen absorbers can also deteriorate the quality of the surrounding matcha by generating heat. We believe they have more disadvantages than advantages, so we do not use them in our products. We are particular about freshly ground matcha and recommend using it up quickly.

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We are based in Uji area, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan. It is Japan's most famous matcha production area.

Uji tea is grown in four prefectures in western Japan; Kyoto, Mie, Nara, and Shiga. Other prominent matcha production areas include Nishio City in Aichi Prefecture and Yame City in Fukuoka Prefecture. In recent years, production has also begun in Shizuoka and Kagoshima Prefectures.

We operate stores in Kyoto, Osaka, and other cities in Japan.

Our flagship store is located Uji City, Kyoto Prefecture. Uji is famous for two World Heritage sites, Ujigami Shrine and Byodoin Temple, and is a traditional tea production area.

If you are planning a trip to Kyoto, make sure to visit! Located on Ujibashi Street, the store offers a wide selection of tea products, which make excellent souvenirs.

Main Store Address:
• English: 156 Uji Myoraku, Uji City, Kyoto 611-0021, Japan
• Japanese: 〒611-0021 京都府宇治市宇治妙楽156番地

We have a factory in Ujitawara-cho, which is located next to Uji City in Kyoto Prefecture. From this factory, we send our matcha all over the world.

No. Shipping is 100% free for all products featured on the Matcha Direct online store.