This article needs additional citations for verification. It is special in two aspects of farming and processing: the green tea plants for matcha are shade-grown for about three weeks before harvest and the stems and veins are green powder tea in processing. The traditional Japanese tea ceremony centers on the preparation, serving, and drinking of matcha as hot tea and embodies a meditative spiritual style. The tea was prepared by roasting and pulverizing the tea, and decocting the resulting tea powder in hot water, then adding salt.
Preparation and consumption of powdered tea was formed into a ritual by Chan or Zen Buddhists. Zen Buddhism and the Chinese methods of preparing powdered tea were brought to Japan in 1191 by the monk Eisai. Although powdered tea has not been popular in China for some time, now there is a global resurgence in Matcha tea consumption, including in China. Matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves that also are used to make gyokuro. The preparation of matcha starts several weeks before harvest and may last up to 20 days, when the tea bushes are covered to prevent direct sunlight.
Then, tencha may be de-veined, de-stemmed, and stone-ground to the fine, bright green, talc-like powder known as matcha. Grinding the leaves is a slow process, because the mill stones must not get too warm, lest the aroma of the leaves is altered. The flavour of matcha is dominated by its amino acids. The highest grades of matcha have more intense sweetness and deeper flavour than the standard or coarser grades of tea harvested later in the year. Ceremonial grade: This is the highest quality used mainly in tea ceremonies and Buddhist temples. This is stone ground into a powder by granite stone mills. The unschooled drinker is unlikely to notice a large difference between Ceremonial and Premium grade.