New to matcha - tips appreciated!

Tonight I’m going to try making matcha. I’m picking up a little of it tonight from Whole Foods. I’m holding off on getting a proper whisk until I figure out if I like it. What are some other ways to whisk it that produce favorable results? I’ve heard it can be done with a fork. I’m also considering using my blender bottle (plastic sports drink bottle that has a wire whisk ball inside) and blending it using that. Is that a good idea?

22 Replies

When I’ve made mine cold, I use a plastic drink bottle and I don’t even have a wire whisk inside, I just shake it a lot. Seems to work fine, but I’m not an expert by any means. I do make hot matcha lattes at work (matcha, little bit of hot water, whisk a bunch with a fork, add hot milk and stir) that work pretty well.

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CK select said

Having the matcha go through the strainer first definitely helped me. First time I just measured and plopped the powder in my water bottle (cold) and no amount of shaking completely made the clumpy part go away and those were kinda gross. But maybe you won’t have that problem with your whisk ball anyway.

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http://oolongowl.wordpress.com/2013/01/26/how-to-make-a-cup-of-matcha-the-easy-way/ for hot

For cold, I use a blender bottle. Sometimes I can get away with just using a regular glass and stirring with a small whisk or those plastic tumbler straws that have little fins on it.

CK select said

Very nice instructions!

Perfect! Thanks!

cool post! what brand is that variable electric kettle you’re using? :D

Andie select said

With the blender bottle, do you strain it first? Or just plop a scoop directly into the cold water and let the blender ball take care of it?

It’ll take more shakes, but the blender bottle can handle it without sifting the matcha

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Thanks for the responses, all!

Lala said

How did your first matcha experience turn out?

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Chizakura said

So I have a matcha question. I purchased matcha from Red Leaf Tea. To be specific, it was basic grade, caramel flavor at robust settings.

Now I’m under the impression that Red Leaf has good quality matcha. I’m also under the impression that the sign of a good quality matcha is it to be a vibrant, almost electric green color. My matcha is more brown than green, and no matter how little I use, water temperature, how long I whisk it, or how much I water it down (or even turn it into a latte) it’s bitter as HECK.

Did I get a bad batch, or are flavored matchas typically more bitter? Should I get a straight matcha and try again? I really want to like it, but so far my first impression isn’t very good.

Lala said

Did you get matcha made with green tea, or black or white matcha? Red leaf sells all three kinds of matcha, which you then can order with flavouring. That may account for the difference in colour. If you ordered the green tea matcha with caramel, it should be green.

Chizakura said

I ordered it with green tea base, and it’s very a muddy green. A wilted flower is brought to mind when I look at it.

Uniquity said

I had the same issue with my Red Leaf matchas, but in general I believe we are the lone dissenters. I assumed that the colouring was off due to the flavour additives, but I never managed to get the taste quite right. The caramel was actually the best for me, but it always came out bitter though it didn’t taste of chemicals like the others. Hopefully someone else can suggest some tips to improve your experience.

Chizakura said

Have you found a matcha that you liked enough to purchase more than once, Uniquity? From any company I mean, not just Red Leaf. I really want to like matcha, but if that’s what RLT’s matchas are like, I kinda want to look elsewhere. =/ I was really enjoying the taste of it until the bitterness gave me a knuckle sandwich.

Uniquity said

Unfortunately matcha and I have yet to make friends and are unlikely to as I don’t like green tea. I just happened to have a particularly bad time with Red Leaf – but MANY others had good experiences there so I am the odd one out. Others have suggested trying it anywhere you can – coffee shops, local stores, etc, to get a feel for it and see if it is something you could learn to love. There may also be people swapping it out on the boards if you’re lucky.

Chizakura said

Yeah, generally I agree with you, with the whole dislike of green tea. I keep trying to like it… Well, I don’t hate it, but the only green tea I’ve ever enjoyed enough to buy more than one time was Jasmine Pearls.

Maybe I should just give up on matcha, because well … it’s not cheap. Heh. For a meager 30g of matcha from RLT, with shipping and one of those small tins to store it in, altogether it was $30, which is just absurd for such a small amount of tea.

Uniquity said

I am largely in agreement with you. It is probably the most expensive type of tea I have ever purchased. For just a small package and shipping to Canada I was still looking at at least $1 per cup, and I bought mine on sale. The beau has drank what we had left but it is not something either of us are inclined to continue with, even if we purchase locally. He might get a matcha latte on the go occasionally but that is about it.

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Chelle said

Maybe contact RLT? I just received caramel matcha from there and it was very vibrant green, almost chartreuse.

Ditto to this

Uniquity said

Hm. I had 4 different matchas from them (at different times) and they were always more brown/muddy green than vibrant. I assumed they were just like that.

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