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Guide to the varieties of Green Tea

Tea, which first was reserved for Buddhist monks, is today intrinsically tied to the Japanese way of life, and is effectively one of the reasons for the high life expectancy of the Japanese People.


All Japanese teas are summarized by Europeans under the term "Green tea". Japanese people however distinguish tea more precisely according to the roasting / fermentation process.

The right temperature of the water is very important for the preparation of green tea. If the water is too hot during the infusion the green tea will become bitter and many health-promoting ingredients are destroyed!
If you pour the boiling water in a cold pot it loses about 10-15°C and that is the perfect infusion temperature for most teas.

The water which is used for the preparation should be as free of lime as possible. Lime is the greatest enemy of tea taste! A green tea, which is prepared with calcareous water, cloudes quickly and the color keeps getting darker and darker. When it cools, the taste will become more and more bitter and make the tea gradually inedible. You can recognise good quality water, if the green tea retains its bright colour.


Sencha

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Sencha is a traditional tea that is a favorite of Japanese. Last but not least it`s consumed because it contains a very high proportion of vitamin C, calcium, micronutrients, as well as many other health-promoting substances and is thus a big plus for the physical well-being.


Jo-Sencha

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The addition of "JO" is used only for higher quality Sencha. A top quality made from fine leafs. It has a refined aroma, strenght and a slightly bitter taste. The colour of Jo-Sencha is greenish yellow.


Bio-Sencha

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Munoyaku is a Sencha harvested from fields which are free of any fertilizer or any plant protection product for more than 10 years. Full of natural and pure energy, this fine leaf results in a cup of highly aromatic tea.


Fukamushicha

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Fukamushicha is produced in Shizuoka. The long steaming of the leaves results in a very gentle and mild taste.

Characteristic for this tea is a beautiful, picture-book-like, deep green color.


Ujicha

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Ujicha is cultivated in Kyoto and is known for its particularly delicious aroma and its slightly intense taste.

The Ujitea or Uji-cha is grown on the banks of the River Uji(Kyoto). The river Uji has its source in the Biwalake(Shiga) and meanders through the Ujimountains, whose thick mists, coupled with gentle sunshine are responsible for the delicious aroma of Ujitees.


Ureshinocha

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Ureshinocha is produced with a very complicated process in Kyushu. It is manufactured today according to the traditional method and is therefore known for its intense flavor.

The area of Ureshino in the Saga-Ken (prefecture in Kyushu) is famous for their Tama - ryokucha - tea, which is also also known as "Guricha".

Even today, this tea is made by a particular traditional method. After steam treatment, the leaves are roasted in an oven (Kama) and formed into small "curls", so-called Tamagata. This tea is known for its strong flavor.

The preparation is the same as that of the high-quality Sencha.


Bancha

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Bancha is a variation of Senchas. Bancha is a tea that is produced from the coarser leaves and thin stems, about 2 weeks after the initial harvest has been picked. Bancha is popular because of the refreshing taste and a low content of theine.


Houjicha

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Houjicha is a Bancha tea that is roasted for some minutes at about 200 degrees. The color of the tea leaves is brownish and the ready-prepared tea has a unique roasted scent. The color of the tea is golden.


Genmaicha

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Genmaicha is a mixture of bancha and roasted Genmei (wholemeal rice). This variety offers a slightly brownish colour with a fragrant aroma.


Matcha

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The traditional of the tea ceremony is Matcha. A variety of green tea, which is harvested in the shade and then pulverized to a fine green powder.

Nowadays, you can enjoy Matcha in everyday life as it is no longer used exclusively within the framework of the tea ceremony. A reason for this are the many health-promoting substances contained in the Matcha-tea like in the Sencha-tea. Matcha is especially apreciated because of its high catechine content which is supposed to have a prophylactical effect against cancer .

In addition, Matcha is often used as an ingredient for sweets because its creamy and mild taste. For example, cakes and ice cream from Matcha are very popular in Japan today.