Matcha tea has been gaining popularity all over the world; however, it has been popular in Asia for centuries. Today it is becoming one of the favorite drinks of many people in North America. Despite matcha’s soaring popularity, not many people know about the different grades of matcha and their properties. In fact, each grade has its own distinct flavor and usage.
Consuming matcha tea has at least ten times more nutritional value than any regular green tea, and it is known to have about 16 times more antioxidants than the contents of blueberries. In fact, the different grades of matcha tea have a league of their own. Typically, matcha is divided based on different grades, namely, culinary matcha, premium matcha, and ceremonial matcha.
It is worth noting that the grading system can be quite misleading, as both culinary and premium grades do not have lower quality than a ceremonial grade. All of these are, in fact, high-quality matcha powder. However, they are just produced and grown differently to best suit their different purposes. One thing to remember, however, is that you must not mix two different grades of high-quality matcha tea, as you may end up diluting the effects and taste to form a concoction that may not deliver the best taste of each grade
Table of Contents
Here are the significant differences between the different grades of the matcha tea:
Ceremonial Grade Matcha Tea
Firstly, you can buy the best organic matcha tea online or in stores. All you have to do is ask for the right grade of matcha tea you are looking for. Ceremonial grade matcha is the purest form of matcha found. It has an earthy flavor that comes through with each sip. In fact, you could skip using additives such as milk, sugar, and sweeteners. It is, however, not so ideal for the purpose of baking or cooking as the strong flavors could overpower the entire mix. Indeed, it has an amazing nutrition profile and a sweet aftertaste. It is also one of the only teas that can be used in Chanoyu or Japanese tea ceremonies.
Culinary Grade Matcha Tea
This is the cooking-grade matcha tea that is often known as ‘low-quality matcha’; however, it is not always the case. They are indeed usually mixed with other flavoring agents and ingredients, as they are strongly flavored and far more bitter than the previously mentioned two grades of matcha tea. It needs to be thoroughly sweetened in order to cut its sharp taste. They are best used for baking items such as dark chocolate truffles, flapjacks, breakfast muffins, and other items that you may want to make more nutritious.
Premium Grade Matcha Tea
Officially, premium-grade organic green tea isn’t an official category in the matcha tea grading system; however, it proves useful. It does have the same sweet flavor of the ceremonial grade matcha but isn’t as strong flavored or bitter as the culinary variant. It is very palatable, and it is ideal for those who want to enjoy matcha tea on a regular basis, as it is budget-friendly. It can be flavored with syrups such as hazelnut, vanilla, honey, milk, cinnamon, and lemon juice, and even be blended in with juices and smoothies or sprinkled on porridge.