All the great taste of Sencha with a dusting of matcha combine to give a more interesting and complex taste than traditional Sencha alone.
Japanese green teas are dramatically different in taste and finish than Chinese green teas. Impeccably grown and machine harvested these teas are not going to have the same large leaf style that many Chinese green teas do. More grassy and vegetal in character, these teas tend to have less caffeine naturally and are bright and obviously green. Matcha Infused Sencha is one of many great Japanese tea varieties.
Japanese Green Tea
Matcha is actually a powder produced by milling green tea leaves. Matcha production dates back as far as CE 600 when tea was transported in brick form. Traditionally used for Chado, or the Japanese Tea Ceremony, matcha is now used widely for bottled drinks, home cooking, and by many restaurants. It is generally produced from gyokuro leaves, which have been hand-picked, and features a distinctive bright green appearance. There are many grades of matcha depending on the base tea used in production, and cooking grades tend to impart a stronger flavor, thus using ceremonial grades in cooking is not necessarily better. A more recent use for matcha is found in matcha infused sencha and matcha infused genmaicha which build a layer of complexity and flavor on these two well-known Japanese teas. Making matcha on its own involves vigorous whisking of the matcha in a bowl until frothy and then adding water if necessary to taste.
The most consumed tea in Japan is sencha. Made from the first flush of the year, there are several variations on production method which provide many variations of sencha green tea itself. Shincha or Ichibancha is produced from the first months harvest and is very hard to come by outside of Japan. By covering the tea plants with shade cloth for about a week prior to harvest we get Kabuse Sencha or Kabusecha with darker color and milder flavor. Another variation is Asamushi Sencha which is simply steamed for a bit less time than the normal 15-20 seconds of traditional sencha production. Finally, Chumushi and Fukamushi Sencha teas are steamed for progressively longer periods.