Enjoy National Tea Day - Japanese Style!

Enjoy National Tea Day - Japanese Style!

The 21st of April is National Tea Day! It is celebrated in tea rooms, cafes hotels and pubs across the UK, arguably the most British day of the year. The Brits enjoy a decent ‘cuppa’ and ...dare I say the Japanese love a nice cup of green tea too!

Green tea is a very popular drink in Japan. There are several kinds of tea available, but Matcha might be the most popular and well- known one across the globe. It has been used not only in drinks but in food, mainly dessert, too. Maybe you have tried matcha latte or matcha ice-cream yourself?


What is Matcha and is it good?

(Matcha in a teacup along with bamboo whisk, tea caddy and bamboo tea scoop)

Matcha is finely ground powder of specially grown green tea leaves. It is bright green colour and has grassy and earthy taste. It is packed with goodness such as Catechins, Vitamin C, fibre, caffeine, beta-carotene, Vitamin E etc. It is said that this antioxidant packed super food helps to improve metabolism, calm the mind and relaxes the body, prevents disease, lowers the risk of high blood pressure, even lose weight! Fancy a try? As I mentioned above, it is available in drinks such as matcha latte, matcha bubble tea, matcha soda etc, also in desserts such as matcha ice cream, matcha cheesecake, matcha brownies, matcha chocolate. It’s worth trying because not only you enjoy it, but you also take some goodness in you at the same time!


Japanese Tea Ceremony

(a lady in kimono making Matcha)

Traditionally, matcha is used in a Japanese tea ceremony, known as ‘Chanoyu’. ‘Chanoyu’ is to offer your guests hospitality by making tea for them, and for the guests to enjoy appreciating the tea. Yes, there are certain manner and etiquette to follow at a tea ceremony, but please do not worry. ‘Chanoyu’ is more about enjoying serving and having the tea itself and not too worried about the manner. If you are a fan of Japanese history (or even if you are not!) and have been watching ‘Shogun’ on Disney Plus, there is a great scene where Buntaro and Mariko have a tea ceremony. If you want to know more about the Japanese tea ceremony, we have a couple of perfect books at The Japanese Shop: The classic - ‘The Book of Tea by Okakura Kakuzo, and The Best Seller - 'The Wisdom of Tea' by Noriko Morishita. Perhaps it may be a good idea that you brew a nice cup of tea or make matcha, sit comfortably on your favourite sofa, enjoy learning about tea ceremony and Japanese spirits whilst sipping the tea on one lazy afternoon?


Japanese Teacups

(a lady in kimono holding a Japanese teacup)

Matcha is served in a special matcha teacup which comes in unique shape. It is normally thick, wide based and fairly low height. This unique shape is to make it easy to whisk the matcha using a bamboo whisk. At The Japanese Shop, we have beautiful traditional teacups such as Sapporo Traditional Japanese Tea Cup and Yukishino Traditional Japanese Tea Cup that are perfect match for tea ceremony.  We also have other types of teacups that are similar to mugs and teacups but with no handle. Why no handle? It is because Japanese tea is supposed to be brewed with hot water at 70C – 80C, so the teacup is not too hot to hold. The reason why we don’t brew Japanese green tea with hot boiling water? It is because brewing tea at that temperature enhances umami flavour. Matcha is made at this temperature too. Some premium green tea such as Gyokuro is best to be brewed with water of 50C. some people may think it’s too cold to drink tea, but believe me, the flavour is just phenomenal when tea is brewed at the right temperature. The etiquette how you hold the cup is to hold the body of the cup with one hand and the other supporting it underneath. At The Japanese Shop we have range of different style of teacups (and some mugs too!), why not have a browse and find your favourite one?

 (Sapporo Traditional Japanese Tea Cup)

Would you like to try Matcha on National Tea Day?

(Matcha latte in a mug)

Now that you know more about Japanese green tea, especially matcha, why don’t you introduce some Japanese style for your tea day this year? Here I introduce you a quick and easy matcha latte recipe for you to try.


  • 1 teaspoon of high-quality matcha powder
  • 1 tablespoon of hot water (not boiling)
  • 1 cup of milk (any type of milk you prefer, such as cow's milk, almond milk, oat milk, etc.)
  • Optional sweetener: honey, sugar, or maple syrup to taste


  1. Heat Milk: Pour the milk into a small saucepan and heat it over medium heat until it's hot but not boiling. Alternatively, you can heat the milk in the microwave for about 1-2 minutes.
  2. Whisk Matcha: While the milk is heating, sift the matcha powder into a cup or mug. Add the hot water to the matcha powder.
  3. Mix Matcha: Use a bamboo whisk or a small whisk to mix the matcha powder and hot water until it forms a smooth paste with no lumps.
  4. Froth Milk (Optional): If you want frothy milk, you can use a milk frother or a handheld frother to froth the heated milk until it becomes frothy and foamy.
  5. Combine: Pour the hot milk into the cup or mug with the matcha paste. Use a spoon to gently fold the milk and matcha together until well combined.
  6. Sweeten (Optional): If desired, add sweetener to taste and stir until it's dissolved into the latte.
  7. Enjoy: Your matcha latte is ready to enjoy! You can sprinkle a little extra matcha powder on top for decoration if you like.

Feel free to adjust the ratio of matcha to milk and the sweetness level according to your preference. Enjoy your homemade matcha latte!


Harlow Carr Pop Up Shop

Our pop-up shop at RHS Garden Harlow Carr has been very successful this year, again. We thoroughly enjoy our customers spending some time choosing their new favourite tableware and miscellaneous goods. The pop-up shop is open until 5th of May, so don’t miss out on this opportunity to experience this Japanese vibe if you are ever in Harrogate!

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