Matcha and Beauty

May 13, 2018

by Kanon Kanamaru, Yukiho Sawauchi

The History of Matcha

Tea was drunk in China and carried from there to Japan about 800 years ago by priests who went abroad to study culture in China. At first, it was used for medicinal purposes by noblemen. Later, the way of drinking tea stirred into hot water was introduced and took shape as the tea ceremony by Sen no Rikyu and others. Now, Japanese people drink it in the tea ceremony and daily life. But recently, matcha (powdered green tea) is very popular in the world and there are stores specializing in matcha in New York and Los Angeles.

Matcha and Beauty

Macha is drunk all over the world and it is famous as a superfood now. Superfood is a word used by doctors, and nutritionists for foods that contain a lot of active elements. For example, there are coconuts, cacaos, açaí palm and so on. Japanese food, natto and miso, are also considered superfoods. They contain a lot of effective ingredients for enhancing beauty. First, matcha has an effect on diet. There are catechin that reduces absorbtion of sugar, tannin that reduces and controls absorbtion of fat, caffeine that burns the fat and chlorophyll that lets unnecessary cholesterol out. It is most effective to drink three cups of tea every day. Next, matcha has vitamins. There are vitamin C that prevents liver spots and freckles, a vitamin that prevents dry skin and vitamin A that keeps the skin moist. Then, matcha has the effect of anti-ageing. It can prevent wrinkles, liver spots and freckles. Matcha is easy to drink and has a lot of effective ingredients for beauty. Matcha is very popular all over the world.

How to Take Matcha in the Body

Matcha can be taken into the body easily in some ways. Matcha is a little bit bitter and difficult for some people to drink every day. In the supermarkets and convenience stores, green tea containing matcha is sold as a drink. People can drink it more easily than matcha. Matcha smoothie, which is a mixture of bananas and soybean milk, is also easy to drink every day. Adding other ingredients, especially sweet ones, help to disguise the bitterness of matcha. Matcha is not only a drink, but also can also be made as dessert. Matcha sweets are the most popular way to take in matcha around the world. There are matcha chocolate, matcha cake, matcha parfait, matcha ice cream, and mactha cookies. Furthermore, there are cosmetics that are made of matcha. Matcha beauty soap and facial pack are sold around the world.

Matcha Diet

It is said that matcha is effective for reducing weight. If you want to try a matcha diet, it is recommended that you follow these rules for when, how much and how to make matcha.  In order to be effective, it is best to drink 3 grams of matcha in each cup and to drink several cups every day.  Matcha contains caffeine so it can wake you up in the morning.  By drinking it in the morning, you can start the fat-burning effects and keep them going all day long.  When you make matcha, the water should be 70 to 80 degrees, not boiling.  If the water is too hot, it will cause the matcha to lose some nutritional benefits.  Follow these rules to get the benefits of matcha in a reducing diet.

Relaxation Effect

If people drink matcha, they will become composed because it contains theanine. This suppresses exited states of the brain and reduces the possibility to get irritated. It also effects insomnia, high blood pressure, improvement of PMS and concentration. Matcha can make the body healthy and beautiful.

Matcha in Kyoto

Kyoto is the one of the famous prefectures that make matcha in Japan. There are a lot of matcha flavored sweets available here. We visited one famous matcha shop, called “Matcha House” in Kawaramachi. This is very popular for people on holiday, although customers must wait for 2 hours and more. We also waited for two hours. We ate matcha tiramisu and drank green tea. The green was beautiful and the dish was served in a small mortar. It was really delicious.


El té verde es un tipo de té que se hace pasando la hoja verde por un mortero despues de cocerla en vapor y secarla.

Hoy en día también se usa el té que ha sido molido durante las ceremonias del té.

El sabor refrescante y amargo del té va muy bien junto con el sabor dulce del azúcar. Por eso, el helado de té verde se ha convertido en un sabor clásico y uno de los más populares en Japón.


Se cree que el origen del té verde es del siglo X.

El té verde llegó a Japón en el período Heian, desde la China de la época Tang, pero no fue hasta el periodo de Kamakura cuando el método de hacer el té fue conocido.

Tomando el té, se puede ingerir todos los nutrientes al completo.

Componentes y efectos

El té verde tiene varios efectos. Algunos ejemplos de dichos efectos son el de quitar el sueño y los efectos diuréticos.

Particularmente, el té verde se toma en forma de polvo hecho con hojas de té. Por eso se

incluyen nutrientes en abundancia.

Los componentes principales del té verde son los siguientes:

 Cafeína,  aminoácidos, taninos, proteínas, vitaminas, celulosa. minerales, polifenol

El té verde se usa en varios dulces.

Por ejemplo, bizcochos, pastas, flan y caramelos.

El té ligero se hace con una cucharada y media de té verde en polvo.

Tiene un sabor refrescante que queda en la boca.

El té oscuro se hace con mucha cantidad de polvo de té.

El sabor del té verde en polvo destaca.

¿Dónde, cómo y cuándo se cosecha el té verde?

Se cosecha en el campo del té verde.

Primero, se tiene que impedir que le dé direcamente la luz del sol, para controlar la fotosíntesis y para que se acumulen el sabor y la dulzura del té.

La época para cosechar el té es hacia el dos de mayo. Cuando las hojas tienen un aroma fragante, se puede cosechar.

Pero se tiene que cosechar rápidamente y cocer las hojas del té para que no pierda la frescura.

Por último, se tiene que refrigerar y secar.

Nakamura Tokichi—Experiencing the Green Teas of Uji

By Miki Hamada and Emiri Iwagami



A long time ago, Yoshimitsu, the Third Shogun of the Ashikaga Shogunate ordered a tea plantation be made in the hills around Uji, a town southwest of Kyoto. It is know for Byodoin Temple and the Uji River. Ever since, Uji has become well known for its fine green teas. The surrounding environs are especially good for growing tea because of the morning mists that come off the Uji River. Today, Uji is a first-class Japanese tea producing area, and so naturally there are many teashops in the city. Nakamura Tokichi is one of them.The Nakamura family, the founders of Nakamura Tokichi, has been entirely devoted to tea for the past 160 years. Nowadays, their long-established shop has become popular with all kinds of people. In addition to its regular clientele, new customers include young women and Japanese and foreign tourists. Why is Nakamura Tokichi so popular today and loved by so many?


Recently the shop embarked on a new project to revitalize its traditions. In 2001 they made café space to sell sweets. There you can try Japanese tea, powdered green tea (macha) and sweets that are made with powdered green tea. Among their sweets are macha chocolates, macha soft ice cream, and jellies. Nama-cha jelly, along with green tea and teabags, are their most popular products. The shop sells various traditional teas as well, both bitter and sweet. Information about each product has been translated into English and is included in the packaging. The opinions of customers are included as well. Seasonal products are also sold. In the spring, the first tea of the season comes in. This is called shin-cha in Japan. Nakamura Tokichi also makes shincha jelly from fresh new leaves. In summer, cold-brewed green tea is sold; in winter, green tea of medium quality is available. Customers can choose from many different tea products all year long.


There is a beautiful garden in back that has a 200-year-old pine tree. Because its shape resembles that of a boat, it is called Horai-funa-matsu —“the pine in the shape of the boat to Mt. Horai.” Mt. Horai is a mythical mountain where Chinese immortals lived. The tree is 6meters high and the trunk is 1.3 meters in diameter. It is said that it was planted by the second generation of the Nakamura family. The garden has been regularly kept from the second generation. From café terrace you can see this beautiful pine. It received a famous tree award from Uji city.



In 2009 Nakamura Tokichi was selected as an official “Cultural Landscape,” a UNESCO designation that places value on the mosaic of natural environment, climate and a human livelihood that has been maintained over generations. This designation was created at the UNESCO World Heritage Convention. Nakamura Tokichi was chosen because its head office building is representative of a tea merchant’s house from the Meiji Period. The Nakamura Fujiyoshi Byodoin shop is an historical building that was once the restaurant-inn Kikuya in the Edo period.


Tea Ceremony Experience

  1. Make macha powder by grinding tea on the millstone.
  2. Enter the special tearoom built in the Genroku era (300 years ago).

You will be served macha jelly.

3. Drink koi-cha by turns. Koi-cha is a thick and strong macha made from high-class green tea powder

4. Drink usu-cha by turns. Usu-cha is a light and weak macha.

Place: tea room Zuishou-an

Time: 45~60 minutes

Expense: 2,160 yen per person

Application: To participate, you have to make reservations.

Tel: 0774-22-7800 / E-mail:



Business hours:

Weekdays : store 10:00~17:30

Café 11:00~17:30 (last Order17:00)

Holidays:   store 10:00~18:00

Café 11:00~18:00 (last Order17:15)



Macha jelly        Usu-cha                  Kitsune cha soba



Uji’s Morihan Tea

by Mochizuki Ayana and Yuki Kurisu

Morihan (森半) is the name of a well-established tea company in Uji, a small town just south of Kyoto. Uji is famous for the tea grown in the surrounding hills and so naturally many tea companies and tea shops are located here. Morihan offers many different tea products that, according to its motto, “are safe and can be trusted.” They sell powdered green tea (macha), other varieties of regular teas, coffee and also other macha products that are used in many foods and implements that are connected to  the tea ceremony. Morihan has always tried to maintain their company tradition of producing high-quality tea ever since it was established in 1836. And it always consider show its tea is suited to Japanese tea culture and life style. Morihan also has a tea shop in Uji that serves teas and sweets and tea souvenirs.

We talked with Yoko Morishita who is has worked at the company for many years. She taught us about Morihan’s history, how tea is produced, how it is sorted, and how teas taste differently from each other. She is a knowledgeable person and was exceedingly kind to us. She also works as a Chado (tea ceremony) instructor, teaching students how to make and serve green tea, and how to conduct a tea ceremony in a small teahouse or anywhere. We asked Ms Morishita a few questions.


Tell us about Morihan…


“By adhering to a high standard that is from our tea cultural inheritance and a very long history, Morihan reflects that spirit, and has been developing a wide range of products that utilize powdered green tea in new ways. They make green tea tea bags, and sweets that contain green tea like dorayaki (sweet-bean paste between cakes—popular TV anime character Doraemon’s favorite food), daifuku (mochi with bean paste), ice cream and cake. Our products all have high quality and have great reputations both domestically and internationally.”


Morihan tea shop. The character on the shop curtain is "cha" and means tea.



What does the company’s name, Morihan, name mean and what is its history?

“The name comes from Morishita Hannzaemon, who was the first president of our tea company. The first part of the last name, MORI (森), is combined with the first part of the first name, HAN(). This tea company was established in Tenpo era (1830-1844). At that time, they grew tea in nearby fields and sold tea leaves in Uji. Right now Morihan has been merged with the Hankyu department group and another tea company named Matsumoto.”


What is rewarding about your work.


“These days, the tea world has been split in many parts. Some companies produce high-grade tea for use in expensive tea pots. Others produce cheap teas, instant teas, and  teas that are sold in plastic bottles. Still others focus on tea products that are used in baking, and other kinds of foodstuffs. Now great effort is being put into this aspect of the tea business. But I like being an instructor of  tea. To make macha familiar to a lot of people with my work is very worthwhile.”


Does Morihan export to the foreign countries?


“They export almost all of their macha powder to foreign countries these days. They export to the USA, Taiwan, Hong Kong and also some countries in Europe too. The USA uses it in cafes; in Taiwan and Hong Kong they sell it in big supermarkets. Many countries in Europe want to drink green tea or eat Japanese foods because they think it is healthy. These foreign companies contact a Japanese food buyer to obtain our green tea powder.”


Thank you for talking with us.






















Buy products from MORIHAN

Le thé “macha”

Par Masaya Ochiai, Masayo Tujimura et Jun Kajita

Nous allons vous présenter  le thé vert en  poudre appelé «macha» (ou «matcha»). Le procédé de fabrication de ce thé est différent du thé appelé «sencha», qui est du thé vert japonais en feuilles. D’abord, on fait sécher le thé vert et on l’étuve. Ensuite, on le réduit en miettes et on élimine les impuretés. Puis on le moud avec une meule de pierre, appelée «chausu» en japonais. A l’époque Edo (1603-1868), on le buvait souvent fraîchement moulu. Pendant la cérémonie du thé appelée «sadô», on boit du «macha» moulu la veille.
Généralement, son goût semble très amer. Nous aussi, nous l’imaginions très amer parce que nous n’en avions jamais bu. Mais au fond, après l’avoir goûté, c’était bon et moelleux. Le «macha» de bonne qualité est sucré et n’est pas âcre. Ce n’est pas seulement une boisson.

Maintenant, on l’utilise souvent dans la nourriture, par exemple comme un parfum pour glace ou dans un parfait glacé, dans la pâtisserie ou même dans les beignets appelés «tempura». Il convient parfaitement pour toutes les douceurs ou friandises parce qu’il est un peu amer. Son amertume fait ressortir la douceur des friandises et la saveur des plats dans lesquels il est utilisé.
Selon une enquête faite entre 1999 et 2007, le thé «macha» est le troisième parfum le plus populaire, pour les crèmes glacées, après la vanille et le chocolat. C’est donc un parfum très aimé des Japonais.

Le thé vert est très bon pour la santé. Il contient des vitamines, du tanin, de la caféine et des aminoacides, etc… Il a donc des effets variés sur nous :

  • pour dissiper l’impression de sommeil,
  • pour la prévention du vieillissement,
  • contre le cancer grâce à ses effets bénéfiques.

Le corps peut assimiler tout ce que le thé contient lorsqu’il est en poudre parce qu’elle est complètement dissoute dans l’eau chaude. Dans le cas du thé vert en feuilles par exemple, on ne mange pas les feuilles.
Le thé vert est aussi très utilisé dans la vie quotidienne. Les Japonais s’en servent pour des usages variés : par exemple, on peut frotter une marmite en fer avec du marc de thé pour la prévention contre la rouille. On en met aussi dans le bain. C’est aussi un très bon engrais.

Kyôto est le lieu de production du «matcha» le plus connu au Japon. Les quantités produites sont en baisse mais on y produit un «matcha» de bonne qualité. Kyôto a une longue histoire et est riche culturellement. C’est une ville attrayante, notamment grâce au «matcha», dont l’histoire est aussi très longue.

L’origine du thé vert :

Il y a environ 800 ans, à l’époque Kamakura (1185-1333), Eisai (un moine de la secte bouddhiste Rinzai) a rapporté de Chine des graines de thé. Cela marque le commencement de la consommation de thé au Japon. Eisai a écrit un livre qui décrit les effets du thé vert et la méthode pour bien le préparer.
Au début de l’époque Kamakura, la consommation de thé s’est répandue dans la noblesse et chez les bonzes. Vers la fin de cette époque, le thé est devenu une boisson populaire mais d’une manière différente : les gens buvaient des feuilles de thé sous la forme d’une poudre dissoute dans de l’eau bouillante et non pas en infusant les feuilles. Le thé s’est popularisé en même temps que la propagation du bouddhisme donc il y a une relation profonde entre la religion bouddhiste et le thé.
Par la suite, Myoueshounin (un moine de la secte Kegon), ami intime de Eisai, a partagé son expérience de la méditation appelée «zazen» avec d’autres moines, en leur expliquant les effets bénéfiques du thé pour garder l’esprit tranquille et être en bonne santé.
Il a reçu des graines de thé de son ami Eisai et a commencé à cultiver cette plante à Toganô, dans la région de Kyôto. Ses efforts ont été récompensés : le thé de Toganô a été reconnu comme un très bon thé. Il en a planté aussi à Uji, près de la ville de Kyôto. Uji a un sol fertile, qui convient bien à la culture du thé, culture qui s’est répandue par la suite dans tout le pays.
A l’époque Muromachi (1336-1573) , Yoshimitsu ASHIKAGA (troisième général de Muromachi) adorait le thé vert. Il a planté de nombreux champs de thé. Nobunaga ODA et Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI, deux samouraïs, buvaient souvent du thé pendant leurs longues batailles. Hideyoshi organisait souvent des cérémonies du thé.
La tradition est née d’accueillir des invités et de leur offrir du «matcha». Cette cérémonie a pris le nom de «chanoyu» et a été transmise de descendants en descendants jusqu’aux élèves qui la pratiquent encore aujourd’hui.
Le «matcha» est indispensable à la cérémonie du thé. Le thé vert se rattache à l’esprit japonais et reflète bien sa culture.

La façon de faire le «matcha» :

Le «matcha» se prépare à partir du «tencha», thé qui est la matière première du «matcha». Tout d’abord, on cueille les pousses de thé, on les étuve, on les fait sécher sans frotter et on les moud. On obtient alors la poudre de «matcha» que l’on mélange ensuite avec de l’eau chaude. La couleur est un vert éclatant, avec un peu de noir et de brun. On fouette à l’aide d’un petit instrument en bambou appelé «tyassen». Des bulles apparaissent à la surface de l’eau. Il ne faut pas laisser de grumeaux : lorsqu’on verse l’eau dans la tasse, il faut rapidement mélanger.

Voici une façon de bien préparer et de bien réussir le «matcha».

Pour une personne : 2 grammes de thé, de l’eau chaude (60 ml), la température de l’eau étant à 80°.
a) mettre la poudre de «matcha» dans la tasse (tamiser la poudre par avance pour ne pas laisser de grumeaux),
b) ajouter un peu d’eau chaude (8 à 10 ml),
c) mélanger à l’aide du fouet de bambou,
d) ajouter de l’eau chaude bouillie (50 à 52 ml),
e) diluer le tout très rapidement en battant avec le fouet, tout en tenant fermement le bol avec la main.
Lorsque le bol est rempli de mousse, la boisson est prête !


by Yumi Morimoto; Naomi Hamada

Fundada em 1860, Tsujiri é uma loja especializada em chá japonês de Uji (Quioto).

Em 1978 foi inaugurado o Charyo Tsujiri, um pequeno estabelecimento onde todos podem provar e descobrir os sabores do tradicional chá nipônico.

Quer a loja Tsujiri quer o salão de chá Charyo Tsujiri, situados no famoso distrito de Gion, atraem não só muitos turistas, mas também os próprios habitantes de Quioto.

De entre os muitos sabores à escolha no cardápio de Charyo Tsujiri, podemos aconselhar o seu famoso sorvete. Este é muito procurado, especialmente pelas mulheres, pois contém em si o paladar inconfundível do chá japonês.

Contudo, uma das especialidades deste estabelecimento é o sorvete com pão-de-ló de macha (o chá verde japonês).

Vamos provar o paladar tradicional do Japão com seu famoso parfait de Charyo Tsujiri, em Gion!