Leaf Type: Green (Matcha)
Where to Buy: Red Leaf Tea
Hemp protein has some rather controversial origins within the seed pod of the well known cannabis sativa plant. In spite of this, Hemp protein does not have the drug inducing side effects of its mother plant but is in fact nature’s highest source of natural fiber, protein and vital fatty acids. This means that, it has been documented to contain up to 10 necessary amino acids and has proven itself as a fundamental source of natural fiber.
Learn more about this Matcha here.
In college, I was a big-time hemp advocate. No, that’s not my way of saying that that I smoked cannabis sativa. Believe it or not, I never have smoked the stuff, and I really have no interest in it. But, I do believe that marijuana’s cousin, hemp, is a very beneficial product that could do so much to help save our environment.
While that speech belongs on a different blog, I mentioned my “history” with hemp briefly to explain what lead me to order this flavored Matcha.
Anyway, with my last bowl of Matcha, I ended up breaking my chawan (ack!) and my other chawan, I believe to have been raku fired and I am unsure of it’s safety for food use, so I have stopped using it. Better safe than sorry. So … I am now using a small bowl that is constructed of a very thin china-like porcelain material, I love this bowl, but I don’t know how ideal it is for Matcha. I guess I’ve just become so accustomed to the feel of my pottery bowl, I think I am going to have to get another one soon.
This Hemp Matcha is really tasty. I tend to make my Matcha a little thicker than a typical usucha, although I don’t know if what I’ve made today would be considered koicha and I am sadly not as knowledgeable about Japanese Tea Ceremony as I would like to be. I just sort of eyeball it when I make Matcha. I scoop it out, sift it, and then add water and whisk until I’m satisfied with how it looks. Then I drink it.
This is rich and creamy and smooth. No chalkiness at all. It is a deep jade color, not quite as bright as some Matcha teas I’ve tasted, but, then, I didn’t expect it to be. I typically order the “basic” Matcha when I order the flavored Matcha from Red Leaf Tea – and let me just say that I LOVE that I can specify what quality Matcha as well as the level of flavoring that is used in the making of my flavored Matcha from Red Leaf Tea – and I ordered the basic this time too. I usually order the “distinctive” level of flavoring but I did not do that this time, as I wanted a more subtle hemp flavor.
And I think that again, I hit the nail right on the head with the choices here. This tastes fantastic. It has a sweet, vegetative taste (as I would expect from a Matcha), with a pleasant buttery undertone. It is thick and creamy. And the hemp adds a hint of nutty flavor to the tea that I find very enjoyable.
Also, an intriguing side effect, I notice a slight numbing of the tongue as I drink this. It doesn’t last long, if I hold out between sips until the numbing sensation disappears, the elapsed time is not even two full minutes. I don’t know if this is because of the tea, or because of the hemp… or if it’s the combination of the two. I just know that I experienced it. It was not an unpleasant experience though, it was just a bit unusual.
Because I waited in between sips to further explore the numbness, I found that my tea had cooled somewhat before I finished the bowl. Some of the matcha had settled to the bottom, so a quick swishing motion of the bowl (or alternatively, a quick whisk if you happen to have your chasen handy), helped redistribute the Matcha. But even with the thicker “bottom of the bowl” Matcha, I will say that it didn’t taste chalky. It was a little thicker, but it did not have a gritty texture either.
This was a very pleasurable and unusual Matcha experience from start to finish. I’m really glad I got to try this Hemp Matcha.