Green tea is famous the world over for being one of the healthiest drinks you can get.
Plugged full of antioxidants, the many and varied health benefits are truly something to behold. Green tea is famous for its assistance in shedding weight, improving brain function, fending off cancer and lowering the chances of heart disease. And that’s just naming a few.
What are also many and varied are the blends of green tea. To name just a few you’ve got matcha, Gunpowder, Genmaicha, Longjinh, Sencha and Kukicha. All of these teas come under the same umbrella but they offer subtle differences and benefits.
In this article, we’re going to go over a few green teas and what occasions they fit into. You might be surprised just how versatile this world is.
Even if you’re in the blue when it comes to green tea, you’ve probably heard of matcha. Go to any coffee shop, look at the Instagram of any influencer, and you’ll see this tasty tea in the form of shots, lattes, even desserts. So what’s the perfect occasion to have one granted its versatility?
Well, matcha is known to help protect your liver, which flushes out toxins and processes nutrients among many other things. So next time you found yourself experiencing a hangover, instead of reaching for the fizzy pop and fast food, treat yourself to a nice matcha.
Sencha is a steamed green tea with a refreshing if earthy flavour sometimes described as “seaweedy.” Sencha teas are produced in China and South Korea, but its in Japan where this brew came to life, as well as the steaming processes involved, responsible for its signature grassy fragrance.
Consumed both warm and cold at all hours of the day in Japan, Sencha tea contains very little caffeine, meaning it can give you a nice kick without creating any insomnia. This is one perfect for that late night bit of studying you need to.
Long Jing, a translation of Dragon Well, is famous for its amazing emerald colour and aromatic sweet flavour. Thought to be China’s most well known green tea, it mainly grows in Zhejiang, in the Eastern Costal Province of China.
Handy in fending off heart ailments, Longjing also aids in fighting stress and anxiety, making this the perfect tea to indulge when feeling overwhelmed. The theanine found in Longjing is a known sedative substance and helps counter the stimulant effects of the caffeine.
Gyokuro is one of the most popular and luxurious green teas in Japan. Sometimes known as Jade Dew, this brew is cultivated in the shade, and much like Sencha — which shares a rolling technique with Gyukuro — gives off a grassy aroma and seaweedy tang.
Given that Gyokuro is one of the most expensive green teas in Japan, it would make sense to reserve this drink for when you have a very special guest or company that needs impressing for whatever reason. The cachet alone will draw them in. They’ll stay for the taste.
Gunpowder, a funny name for tea you might think. But if the leaves are rolled into small pellets resembling just that, then what else are you gonna call it? This green tea is from the Camellia sinensis plant and perfect to perk you up while having your breakfast.
Prepared differently to other green teas, it has some unique benefits. Gunpowder is known to ease the pain of arthritis, help shed weight, protect the skin and heart, as well as stimulate your metabolism and lower blood sugar levels. There’s no reason to not give this one a go.
Genmaicha is a case of double-trouble. Thanks to the sugars and starch in the roasted rice, it has a nutty and toasty flavour. On the other hand, is has a taste of caramel to it, reminiscent of an oolong tea, with the floral notes of a traditional Sencha. This combo reduces bad blood cholesterol, and lowers your risk of cardiovascular disease.
Thanks to the complexity of Genmaicha, it makes for a great pairing with food. So the next time you’re preparing a savoury meal for others, or just for yourself, brew a pot of this tea (granted you’re out of wine). You’ll be surprised by the match!
Huungshan is a green tea produced in the south-eastern region of the Anhui Province of China. A clean and refreshing tipple, there is no astringency at play here. The body is fairly grassy, vegetal and savoury, but dig a bit deeper and you’ll find Huangshan has sweeter notes, hints of apricot and peach.
This tea is known for its excitation benefits. Huangshan cheers people up, it improves their thinking efficiency, conquers fatigue and fastens your work rate. In other words, this is a perfect green tea to enjoy at the office, wherever that may be.
Chun Mee, also known bizarrely as “precious eyebrow”, is a plummy and buttery, believe it or not, kind of brew – a pride of Chinese green tea. Its nickname comes from the eyebrow-shaped tea leaves from which it is made. Like most if not every green tea on the planet, Chun Mee is know to reduce cancer, revigorate skin tone and reverse aging.
Chun Mee is also known to promote healthy teeth and bones, so the next time you’ve got a dental appointment coming up, do yourself a favour and invest in a bag or box of this stuff to impress your dentist.
Kukicha, one of the best named teas on this list besides Gunpowder, is made from the stems, stalks and twigs of the Camellia sinensis. It has a contrasting but effective mildly creamy and nutty flavour. Rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, this is very powerful alkaline tea which works as a great digestive aid after meals.
Remember the meal we talked about? The one you’ll prepare with Genmaicha? Switch the pot to a Kukicha brew for when you or your guests are done eating.
Himalayan tea, smooth and creamy with subtle but much-appreciated notes of maple and toffee is a green tea not to be missed. Containing l-theanine, a beneficial compound known for reducing stress and promoting rest and relaxation, Himalayan tea has also been shown to help reduce inflammation and improve your focus and mental health.
Thanks its relaxation benefits, a cup of Himalayan will pair fantastically when you’re curled up in bed with a book or watching a film. Savour this one, you’ll be in the land of nod before you know it.