With a bright green hue and a fresh taste, matcha tea seems to be all the rage nowadays. Thanks to risk-loving entrepreneurs and adventurous foodies, cafes serving this special drink have doubled in recent years. Although other matcha-based foods such as cookies, cakes, and mousse have appeared on the menu, matcha tea remains a cult classic.
But what makes it so special? And where did it all begin?
Matcha Tea History
While matcha tea may have been associated with Japan, it in fact, originated in China. It wasn’t until Buddhist monks came to the Land of the Rising Sun that the tea drink became a sensation. The monks used it for ritual purposes, using traditional ingredients and tools, as well as following careful, step-by-step processes.
In essence, matcha tea is powdered green tea leaves. Both variants – the ones in tea bags and the powdered version – come from the same plant, Camellia sinensis. The only difference is that the tea leaves for matcha tea are grown under a shade. This helps them produce more chlorophyll, which gives them that vibrant green color. It also helps increase the amino acid theanine that’s said to lend the matcha tea its rich, deep flavor.
The tea leaves are then harvested by hand, steamed, dried, de-stemmed, and deveined. The ‘pure leaves’ are then finely ground. Back then this was done with a stone mill, or the simple mortar and pestle. But today, tea manufacturers use machines to do the job.
The result? Fine matcha tea powder you can prepare at home or at a cafe.
Matcha Tea Today
Love it or hate it, matcha tea (and similar products) are here to stay. More than its purported health benefits, the preparation and consumption of this drink make it a highly popular option for many. Some folks say they love whisking the bright green powder before sipping it. Others say it’s the calming, fresh smell and taste that keeps them hooked.
Can’t get enough of this popular drink? Then browse through this collection of amazing Japanese matcha cafe photos to get your fix.
These photos were taken at Magokoro Teahouse & Matcha Cafe in Chiang Mai, Thailand. If you’re in the area, definitely worth a visit.
Japanese Matcha Cafe Photos
Zen garden at the Magokoro Japanese teahouse in Chiang Mai.
Woman working on her laptop photographed behind tree leaves.
Measuring matcha powder in a black bowl.
Woman smiling at the camera while drinking matcha tea and working on her laptop.
Water spray illuminated by the sun in a Japanese garden.
Two bamboo trees sliced in half and water flowing through them.
Matcha tea in black cups photographed with a beautiful garden in the background.
Empty tables and sitting cushions at the Magokoro Japanese teahouse.
Empty chairs and tables at the Magokoro Japanese teahouse.
Picture hanged in Magokoro Japanese teahouse saying “I love you so matcha”.
Zen garden with big rocks and a brown butterfly sitting on one of them.
Table with complimentary stuff at the Magokoro Japanese teahouse.
Small leaf in the sunlight and a water spray around them.
Black minimalistic menu board outside the Magokoro Japanese teahouse.
Traditional matcha tea in a black cup photographed at the Magokoro Japanese teahouse garden.
Dry flowers in a vase placed next to a white soft curtain letting the sunshine through.
Flower vase in the sunlight at the Magokoro Japanese teahouse.