Been a while since I had any in my collection. The only matcha I have ever bought and personally owned was from Teavana, though I’ve sipped it in restaurants and other places. This, then, I will only really be able to compare to Teavana’s matcha in terms of the quality of the powder.
Not an easy prospect, because of the way in which this is blended with the freeze-dried strawberry powder. The resulting color of the matcha is pretty dark…more like a drab, olive green khaki color than that electrified, super-saturated emerald-green that I’ve come to equate with good, un-diluted matcha powder. I will have to give them the benefit of the doubt as far as that goes, and assume it’s because of the muddying of the strawberry.
There’s really no mistaking the scent, either. Anybody to have bought cereal with freeze-dried strawberry in it, or tins of unsulfered, completely dried fruit will immediately recognize the smell, sweet and, to me, slightly starchy or bready in some way.
I decided, since I haven’t had matcha in a while, to have it this morning in my very favorite way to have it: as a latte. Taken this way, it’s quite a treat!
For reference: 2 1/2 cups water heated over medium heat on the stove in a pot, until steaming but not simmering or boiling. Add 2 rounded teaspoons of matcha, sifted (I use a wire teapot infuser basket and grate it through with the end of the teaspoon). Whisk! Added 1 cup whole milk, whisked until foamy and fluffy and steaming again, then poured into a cup.
Usually my proportions here are different, and usually when it’s regular matcha I add a blob of honey, but I didn’t want to tamper with the flavor of the strawberries. I’m glad that I didn’t — that starchy, powdery aftertaste of the dried strawberry goes really well with the creaminess of the milk.
Taken this way, the matcha tastes essentially the way that it smells, but less sharp, which may very well owe itself to the milk. I like that the matcha isn’t crushed out by either the milk or the strawberry, too…it’s a really decadent trifecta of flavors. It has me thinking that it would make a really delicious ice cream.