Tencha is the name of the leaf used to make matcha. It is generally made by shading to prevent the leaf from becoming bitter (reducing sunlight prevents catechin from building up as the leaf grows), then steaming, drying without rolling, and finally refining into flakes.
The Okumidori cultivar is well-known as a good cultivar for high grade sencha, gyokuro, tencha/matcha. It is known for its deep, dark green color.
Grade: This particular would like be ground into a Premium Ceremonial Grade matcha if made commercially. Created by Hiroshi Kobayashi, an award winning blender, and one of 13 tea professionals in Japan who hold the top rank of tea appraisal, level 10.
You can enjoy this tencha as a tea, or attempt to grind it yourself to create fresh matcha. Grinding on your own with a handheld grinder or even a coffee grinder will probably not reach the higher quality levels of ceremonial grade matcha that uses industrial grinding machinery, but will allow you the freshest matcha you can drink. Generally the fresher the matcha is ground, the better experience. You may even grind as needed, per cup, similar to fresh ground coffee.
Steeping recommendation as tea
There is no one recommended method to steep tencha since it’s not commonly consumed as tea, but we recommend you start with standard sencha steeping and then adjust the parameters to preference: 3 grams of tencha, steeped for 2 minutes in 200 ml of 70C/160F degree water.
Use hotter temperature to extract more astringency and bitterness, cooler temperature for more sweetness. Use more leaves or less water for stronger flavor.
Cold steeping: 5g / 500 ml of water in the refrigerator overnight: 8-12 hours.