Matcha CHADO URASENKE TANKOKAI      AUSTRIA ASSOCIATION
© Urasenke Tankokai Austria 2017
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Growing and processing of Matcha From growing to production of Tencha 1. In the middle of April, the tea bushes are covered with a "reed screen" to shut out the sunlight. 2. After about ten days, straw is spread out on top of the reeds to shut out even more light little by little. As a result, the young leaves grow very thin and wide to capture the little sunlight that is let in by the cover and in the process they become bright green with an increased amount of chlorophyll. This method controls the astringency of taste and improves the distinctive flavor of the tea as well as giving it a more full-bodied character. 3. The picking of the leaves takes place from early May to the middle of the month. The first flush tea leaves are all picked by hand because they are soft, and at only this one time in a year. 4. Immediately after picking, the fresh tea leaves are brought to the tea processing facility. 5. Soon after, the leaves are steamed very strongly to stop fermentation. Thus the vivid green colour is retained throughout the whole leaves. 6. After the moisture on the steamed leaves has been blown away by whirling the leaves around, the leaves are cooled down and dispersed equally. 7. In a brick built oven called ‘Hoiro’, the leaves are put on a triple conveyor to dry out all moisture. 8. The dried leaves of unsorted tea are called Tencha. In this fresh dried condition the leaves are stored in large sealed wooden boxes which are kept refrigerated until further processing. Little by little, as required, the boxes are brought out of refrigeration and opened for the next processing step.
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Matcha