Chinese Green Tea
China is the largest producer of Green Tea in the world – it produces 75 percent of global production. Chinese Green Tea is gently fermented and it has a light yellow to yellow-orange colour.
The most common types are:
GUNPOWDER is probably the most famous Chinese Green Tea, because its production started already in the 7th century. It was also the first tea to be exported from China. It’s a strong tea, both in taste, which is bitter but fresh, and in revitalizing effect. The tea leaves are tightly rolled into small balls and then dried.
LUNG CHING has a very mild and sweet taste with a refreshing and cooling effect. For this reason is ideal in hot days. It contains plenty of vitamin C.
According to a legend, the area where the Lung Ching tea trees grow was guarded by a dragon. For this reason it is named also Dragon’s well. On the contrary of western dragons, the Chinese dragon has benevolent nature and brings luck. The well that he is in charge of, never dries up.
MAO FENG is defined by its soft, sweet and fresh taste, pleasant aroma and intense green color. This is a tea that marks the beginning of the transition from the most ordinary Chinese teas to the specialties and rarities.
Japanese Green Tea
The tea leaves are heated above the steam straight away after harvest. In this way the tea is unfermented, as the enzymes that could trigger the fermentation are destroyed. The beverage than gets such a distinctive green color.
The most widespread Japanese Green Teas are the following:
SENCHA is the most diffused. It is harvested in spring and it has a bitter, but at the same time fresh and sweet taste. It contains more tein and tannins.
BANCHA has a more bitter taste. On the other hand is distinguished by lower level of caffeine due to special preparing and late harvest (third or fourth flush of Sencha). For this reason it’s suitable also for children.
MATCHA is a Green Tea in powder, used in tea ceremonies. Its special treatment starts several weeks before gathering tea leaves as the tea trees are covered from direct sun light. This slows their growth and the leaves become darker. In this way they start to produce even more amino acids that give the tea a little bit sweeter taste.
GENMAICHA is a blend of Sencha and Bancha tea with fried rice added. The taste is soft and less bitter than other Japanese teas.
GYOKURO is the most prestigious tea in Japan and is intended only to guests. Since it is very expensive, it is consumed only in special occasions and in small quantities.