The flavour of the Japanese matcha green tea is something I fell in love with the very first time I had it. Since it’s yet to gain mass popularity here in India, I never missed an opportunity to drink it, or try out desserts and food. And having just returned from a trip to Northern Thailand where matcha ice cream was a daily affair, I was delighted to have been invited to a Japanese Tea Ceremony at Radisson Bru Atria, organised by the teachers of Yoshida Hikari School.
A ceremony that dates back to the 6th century, the tea making process is a structured, elaborate process. In a day and age of fast food and instant noodles, this ceremony doesn’t find too many patient connoisseurs. (Also, it involves sitting on the floor and I have near zero physical agility to sit crossed legged and keep bowing every few minutes). Performed with a certain grace, the tea ceremony echoes the minimalism of Japanese culture.
Once we were greeted with a silent bow, the rather large contingent of folks took our place. While we were served some sweets, the host took care to ensure that all the utensils were immaculate. Each guest requires roughly two scoops of the matcha powder, which was put into a bowl, followed by some hot water. With the use of a traditional bamboo whisk, this mixture was vigorously stirred until it formed a thick tea, to which more water was added. This was served to the guests. Quite honestly, nothing like a good cup of matcha tea to brighten ones day.
A big thanks to the team at Radisson Bru Atria, and the teachers of Yoshida Hikari School for organizing this ceremony. It just bolsters my need to visit Japan… all in good time!