8 Types of Japanese Tea
Japanese tea actually has a variety of types. There are many different ways to make tea, different tastes and colors depending on the type.
This is the most typical type of Japanese tea and this name indicates a type of tea that is infused by boiling with whole tea leaves. It has various types under the name, even expensive ones. For example, “gyokuro” and “kabusencha” are the types that used tea leaves grown with less sun cover.
The tea leaves used for sencha are not fermented, not like the other tea. It is made by boiling tea leaves to make the enzymes inactive.
To make houjicha, you need to roast the tea leaves of sencha, or another type of green tea to make its fragrant smell which green tea doesn’t have. Because it is roasted it has a brown color, and is not bitter like green tea. It is often served after a meal because its clear and fresh taste suits to finish meals.
Genmai means brown rice in Japanese. Genmaicha is roasted brown rice added to sencha tea leaves and matcha powder. It is very popular for its smell and it’s clear color. Compared to other Japanese teas it has a low caffeine content.
Matcha is finely ground green tea powder called “tencha”. It is used not only at tea ceremonies, but also used as a flavoring in snacks and ice cream.
To make this tea, you need to steam tea leaves that are free of stems and leaf veins, then dried without rubbing. It has a mild, but bitter taste. It is used to make matcha.
Bancha means “extra tea” in Japanese. It has 4 types under the category depending on the time and area to pick the leaves up and its quality.
Kuki means steam in Japanese. Literally it is tea that is made of the generally thrown away stems and veins from processing sencha or gyokuro. The stems of gyokuro are called “harigane” and they are very rare.
“Me” means leaf bud in Japanese. They use leaf buds mostly of premium tea leaves that are picked up from the operation at the end of the process of sencha or gyokuro like kikucha. It is famous for its taste and deep flavor.
Japanese tea’s characteristic is that its tastes and flavors differ depending on the manufacturing process, cultivation methods and the parts that are used as tea leaves. Sometimes it is roasted and brown rice is added to it.