Japanes Tencha The Tea Base For Making Matcha
So what is Tencha? Tencha is a unique kind of green tea from Japan. It is a green tea of the Gyokuro variety. In the past, it was used almost solely as a the base for Matcha. In short, Matcha is a finely ground version of Tencha.
Since Tencha is a Gyokuro variety, some would wonder what the differences are between Tencha and the famouse Gyokuro.
Firstly, it is harvested a little differently than Gyokuro. tencha leaves plucking is “three leaves and a bud”, while the Gyokuro plucking is “two leaves and a bud” on a tea branch. In layman’s term, when compared, the Tencha making calls for leaves that are slightly older. This is necessary, because Tencha needs to have a fuller flavor in order to produce a good Matcha.
Secondly, Tencha is flat, while the Gyokuro is rolled to needle like shape after the steaming processe. The reason for Tencha leaves being flat is that staying flat makes it easier to strip of the stems and veins. Stems and veins will bring bitterness and undesired flavor to Matcha.
So who does it taste? The taste profile of Tencha is similar to Gyokuro. However, because the leaves are little bit older and stems are striped, Tencha has a fuller body and taste sweeter.
Availabilty of Tencha is more limited due to the fact that it is produced mainly for Matcha production.
If you are a fan of Japanese teas such as Gyokuro, Sencha and Matcha, you should definitely give Tencha a try.