Have some tea?

I have asked a lot of questions, “where can I have some matcha?”  Then everytime I have to explan, matcha is something quite special, there are a lot of Japanese people who never even had one sip. There are some Japanese cafe where they serve some sweets and matcha. But still for the most Japanese people, matcha is still rigidly stiff and very unsual thing to drink. If you prefer matcha in a casual way, please just go to Starbucks coffee, they have bunch of matcha related drinks, but they are definetely far away from real matcha drink, just like instant ramen and real ramen.



Tea in Japanese is お茶 (ocha) and when we just say “ocha” that usually means green tea, not matcha. Green tea is tea leaves served in a teapot, just like black tea. We drink it hot or cold and it is sold every convenience stores and vending machines.


Another common tea in Japan is むぎ茶(Mugi cha, barley tea) especially in summer time, pretty much every fridge in Japanese household has mugi cha (made at home in a way of sun tea).


This brand mugi cha is the most popular one. Mugi cha has no caffeine, anti edma effective, no suger of course, fragrant and very easy to drink.


Another popular tea in Japan is ほうじ茶(Houji cha, roasted green tea). When green tea leaves are in dark green, houji cha leaves are light brown. The drink color is pretty similar to mugi cha. So when you want to distinguish between those two at a store, pay attention to the number of letters. ”むぎ” mugi has two letters, ”ほうじ” houji has three letters.



The other option is 烏龍茶 (oolong tea, chinese tea). This is very popular in bottles and also as a soft drink at bars for the ones off the booze. How you recognize oolong tea at a store is its first letter in Kanji. If you see the four dots at the bottom of the first letter, it is always oolong tea.




Of course we have black tea, either with milk, with lemon juice, or straight. Most of them have English translation somehow, so it is very easy for you to recognize.



We also have some other teas, like jasmin tea (which you can recognize with the number of letters, it is always the longest) . And a lot of other blend teas. If you see the package anything other than all above, they are blended tea, so just try and find your favorite blend.


As I said, we enjoy tea hot and cold. How you recognize? Hot ones usualy have a orange lid. With vending machines, it is even easier to recognize. Red bottons are hot, blue buttons are for cold.


So now you thnk it is easier to find your bottle of tea, like Japanese people do?



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