Monday, May 1, 2017

Tora Tea: Ceremonial Matcha, A Tea Review

It is kinda chilly today, and because of this Espeon has been pretty much glued to me! I need to enjoy the cool weather while I can, as soon as it gets warmer she gets very aloof and I get no cuddles, though I admit I am very much so looking forward to wearing my sundresses and skirts again, and of course warm weather...not hot though, I really do still hate the heat. Spring is the best, it is warm and so pretty, except today, it is cold and pretty.

I don't write about Matcha very often anymore, I got a bit burned out with the crazy Matcha showdowns and product testing I have done...the more I tasted the more I realized I had become a serious Matcha snob. Unless it passed my increasingly high standards I didn't bother blogging about them...and then they either get tossed into baking projects or lattes, no Usucha for me. When I was contacted by Tora Tea to try their Ceremonial Matcha I almost didn't take them up on the offer, because I was tired of being disappointed by Matcha. However, the description intrigued me 'creamy, bold, and nutty' is EXACTLY what I like in my Matcha so I took a chance and decided to give it a try!

The color is beautiful, vividly green and very vibrant, like the new shoots of grass rather than full grown blades, the texture of the tea is soft and powdery, not at all grainy which is a huge plus to me as it makes sifting a breeze and usually means the texture once whisked is going to be very pleasant. The smell of the Matcha is sweet and creamy, like matcha cake rather than just plain matcha, with an added undertone of chestnuts, edamame, and very distant white pepper and corn silk. Once I added water and gave it a vigorous whisking, the aroma increases in the sweetness department, creamy and nutty with undertones of freshly cut hay and edamame with a slight touch of lima beans and white pepper. The foam is gorgeous, some of the prettiest foam I have gotten in a while and the algae green liquid that peeks through the foam is so lovely, like a bit of summer in my chawan.

The moment of truth, tasting, the moment where it can all go horribly wrong...but the stars aligned and I was greeted with a glorious bowl of green goodness. Truly, this Matcha was perfect in every way...at least perfect to me, Matcha tastes can vary pretty wildly I have found. First off, that texture, I have had some fantastic tasting Matcha that have been ruined by grainy or weird textures, Tora's is smooth and if you let the bowl get cold when it gets to the dregs it is still smooth with only a touch of a powdery texture.

The taste is fantastic, I am not exaggerating when I say I was blown away and immediately messaged the owner of the company and one of my good friends who is Matcha obsessed about how good it was. The taste is a perfect balance of sweet and green, freshly mown hay and edamame blend with sesame seeds, sugar cane, a touch of rice and a very faint touch of both broccoli and miso, giving it a hint of bitterness and umami. Overall this is very much so the Matcha to drink if you prefer sweet over savory or very green, and except for specific circumstances this is very much so me, I like the Matcha to have the savory, strong green, and bitter notes, but I want them to take the backseat to the sweet.

I decided to make a latte (a small one, this is my new go-to Usucha, I am not wasting it!) because I like lattes and I know a lot of people also do, so why not? No sugar, just Matcha and cold lactose-free milk frothed up with my little milk frother, I specify lactose-free milk because my brand (I get it from Aldi, it is the 2% ) is sweeter than normal milk. I really preferred it as Usucha, but it does make a wonderfully sweet and smooth latte with a distinct nuttiness.

This tea was sent for review purposes by the company.

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