The Japanese milk tea that everyone is talking about

Beginning in the Tang Dynasty in China, the tradition of drinking tea travelled through Buddhist monasteries and across to Imperial Japan, where brewing Matcha tea, in particular, is now a staple in the long-standing tradition of the Chanoyu – the elaborate and culture-rich Japanese tea ceremony.

The best tea bushes are covered and grown for up to three weeks prior to being harvested, so as to shade the leaves from direct sunlight, boosting chlorophyll and nutrient levels, cultivating a darker, richer shade of green. The leaves are then hand-picked, steamed, dried and skilfully stone-ground into a fine green powder. While typical teas are prepared by steeping leaves in a bag, the green tea powder produced in this process is not strained. Instead, the entire leaf is dissolved and consumed in water, making Matcha exponentially more potent than other tea varieties.

What are the health benefits? 

Due to its unique shading process, Matcha contains elevated levels of the naturally occurring amino acid L-Theanine, which stimulates a sense of calmness and grounding in the body. It has also been said to help the memory, all while inhibiting any possible side effects of caffeine, a natural element of green tea. The result is concentration and clarity of the mind, and a favourable option for an afternoon pick-me-up or any time that extra bit of focus is needed.

Matcha has also been frequently lauded for its high concentration of antioxidants, possessing six times that of goji berries, seven times that of dark chocolate, seventeen times that of wild blueberries and sixty times that of spinach.

Unlike many diet aids, a unique health benefit of Matcha is that it raises the metabolism rate and burns fat without placing undue stress on the body by raising heart rate or blood pressure.

This rich superfood has proven to be abundant not only in culture and traditional preparation methods but also in health benefits, invigorating what is already within.

Where can I find Matcha?

Matte milk, matcha tea singapore

I was delighted to have recently stumbled upon a newly established local Singaporean company Matchaya, where certified organic premium ingredients from different prefectures in Japan have been combed to produce a variety of Japanese milk tea. There is the Matcha Latte, a Hojicha Tea, which is a roasted green tea, and a Royal Milk Tea option as well as premix tea powders on offer. Best of all, they deliver right to your door, making it convenient for anyone to join in on this green tea party.

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Chuinwei Koh
Born and raised in Singapore, Chuinwei attended college and university in Melbourne, Australia. After a stint in the finance sector, she decided to pursue a career in the fashion industry ― first in an esteemed fashion house, then a homegrown luxury retailer, and presently in a multi-label boutique. With an unrelenting determination and belief in all things healthy and in moderation, she watches what she eats, discredits crazy diets and exercises daily; leading family and friends around her to also want to live a holistic lifestyle. As a fitness junkie, Chuinwei is a yogi, runner and has most recently picked up jumping rope. For some time now, she has been blending her own aromatherapy goods and sketching activewear designs ― all in the hopes of being able to start her own ethical consumer goods company one day. She's already got the name picked out.