Written By: Caroline Chisholm
In 2016, all things matcha blew up. In 2018, they are still a top hit among health nuts and fitness gurus. From matcha lattes to matcha ice cream, the green tea has taken the world by storm with it’s sweet taste and countless health benefits, not to mention it’s vibrant grass green color.
You’ve probably seen those green lattes or teas all over your instagram feed, but what really is matcha? Matcha is a specially grown green tea. Matcha tea leaves are grown in the shade before being harvested which results in higher levels chlorophyll and the amino acid L-Theanine that is used as a meditative mechanism. It is hand picked and steamed during the harvest which keeps the cell wall intact and the antioxidants packed in. The process is painstaking and diligent, which is why matcha tea is more expensive than your average green tea, but it is well worth the price being that is has such great benefits for the body.
What are its health benefits you ask? For starters, it is a “super” tea. It has 137 times more antioxidants than regular green tea which are said to be disease fighting. Researchers have found that matcha can help prevent cancer, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and even helps weight loss. Because it is a big metabolism booster, it speeds up digestion and burns those extra calories you might’ve consumed from that delicious Heirloom cinnamon roll.
Rich in fiber, chlorophyll and vitamins, it detoxifies the body naturally, lowers cholesterol and blood sugar and protects your organs. And get this––matcha tea is even said to be anti aging. So drop your expensive face masks and wrinkle creams and instead go out for a matcha latte with your girl friends.
Another benefit to drinking matcha is it’s natural caffeine. The extra boost can enhance your mood just like a five hour energy, but matcha is unique in that it also relaxes your body and keeps you calm. In other words, it is part yin and part yang. It calms you down while giving you the extra needed boost to get through your cycling class or long work day.
But where can you find it in KC? I went searching and I found what I thought was the best matcha products in town!
#1 Matcha Latte
This is my favorite way of having matcha. The milky latte at Made In KC Cafe has a satisfying sweet taste and LOTS of caffeine. When they say it has more caffeine than coffee, they are speaking the truth. I felt like the energizing bunny the entire day. A bonus to the five dollar frothy green and white drink is that it is like a work of art.
#2 Matcha Boba Tea
Talking about trends, boba tea is towards the top of the list with matcha. The small, squishy and flavorful bobas add a little flair to the drink. Tea Drops, in old westport, makes the best boba teas, including a matcha flavored tea. This drink definitely has more of the green tea taste you would expect, but does it in a refreshing and fun way.
#3 Matcha Water
Matcha water? Is that even a thing? The answer is absolutely. This revitalizing drink tastes almost like plain water, but with a hint of matcha’s herbal flavor. If the matcha taste is too powerful for your taste buds I would recommend trying the diluted version, matcha water. You get all the health benefits and meditative perks of the tea without having a strong sense of its unique taste. Plus Unbakery and Juicery’s packaging is so aesthetically pleasing that you can’t help but snap a pic of the glass bottled green water.
#5 Matcha Sweets
You think matcha is limited to beverages? Think again. For all you sweet tooths out there, branch out of your normal chocolate chip cookies to matcha desserts. While you are at Unbakery and Juicery trying the matcha water, pick up a matcha macaroon covered in dark chocolate. Or if you want an even sweeter take on matcha tea Tea Drops sells matcha kit kats which are shockingly comparable to normal chocolate kit kats.