First there was the buzz about green tea and its antioxidants. Now, the buzz is about matcha, a powdered green tea that has long been used by Buddhist monks and Samurai warriors to prepare for meditation and to improve mental clarity and concentration. It’s also the tea used in the Japanese tea ceremony, chanoyu.
Motto, the world’s first bottled matcha green tea beverage, delivers the health benefits of the centuries-old elixir even better than a cup of green tea. In fact, just one bottle of Motto packs the health benefits of 12 cups of steeped green tea, with one-third the caffeine of a single cup of coffee.
The beverage is brewed from premium stone-ground matcha, sourced from one of the oldest family-owned tea cooperatives in Japan. The matcha flavor is layered with organic apple cider vinegar, honey, organic agave and fresh lemon juice.
The result is lightly sweet and very refreshing, and pairs well with everything from sushi and Pacific Rim cuisines (Indian, Thai, Vietnamese, etc.) to sandwiches and pizza.
Motto is currently sold in 28 states and growing—everywhere from Whole Foods Market to gourmet delis and small natural grocers.
Find a store locator at DrinkMotto.com.
Handsome bottle, tasty contents. Photo courtesy The Verto Company.
WHAT IS MATCHA TEA?
Matcha is a bright green, powdered green tea that is ground to the consistency of talc. It is made from ten-cha tea leaves, which are gyokuro leaves that have been not been rolled into needles but are steamed and dried. The tea bushes are shaded from sunlight for three weeks before harvesting, producing amino acids that sweeten the taste of the tea.
Unlike whole leaf tea, which is heat-panned for steeping, the leaves for matcha are ground like flour, slowly and finely in a stone mill. To brew the tea, the powder is whisked into water, where it produces a wonderful aroma, a creamy, silky froth and a rich, mellow taste.
Powdered tea is the original way in which tea was prepared: steeping dried leaves in boiling water didn’t arrive until the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).
Matcha contains a higher amount of nutrients (vitamins, minerals, L-theanine amino acids, polyphenols, chlorophyll and fiber) than other teas. In recent years, matcha has become a popular cooking and baking ingredient, and now comes in different grades for different uses—including the popular green tea latte.
In the absence of green tea ice cream, sprinkle some matcha on vanilla ice cream (check out these uses for matcha tea).
RECIPE: GREEN TEA COCKTAIL
Here’s a refreshing yet sophisticated cocktail idea from Motto:
Ingredients Per Drink
1. MUDDLE equal parts mint and basil in a cocktail shaker. Add gin, agave and lemon. Shake over ice.
2. STRAIN into a tall glass over cracked ice. Add 6 ounces Motto and stir gently.
3. GARNISH and serve.