What makes Got Matcha superior to other Matcha on the market today?
First of all, we believe in "hands on". To us, Matcha is personal. It is part of our lifestyle, and part of our mission, as a family and a company. A lot of companies are getting on the Matcha bandwagon, hanging out a shingle; "Open for Business", and they know nothing about Matcha. We know; we have had many approach us to private label for them; and we won't.
With that said, we are often asked; "What makes Got Matcha unique and different than other Matcha on the market today?" Here are the 9 differentiating points that determine a quality Matcha, and this is what separates us from the "pack".
Unfortunately, there are no real regulations for matcha companies to comply with when it comes to selling their matcha products. This is very unfortunate because all matcha is NOT the same! Every step from the harvesting region, to how the matcha is grown, the color, nutrition testing and even storage all affect the quality and experience of matcha. This is why it is so key for the consumer to be educated about what makes the best matcha; what qualities to look for and what to avoid. Here at Got Matcha we have done the research and work to bring you the most amazing high quality matcha on the planet! These are the key 9 reasons that set Got Matcha apart from all other matcha on the market…
L-Theanine is matcha’s most important nutrient…the higher the L-Theanine content the sweeter, greener and more nutrient-dense the matcha is. Higher L-Theanine content means the highest most amazing experience when drinking matcha.
L-Theanine is an amazing amino acid which stimulates the brain and helps with: Attention, focus, mental clarity, anti-stress and the gradual release of the alkaline caffeine in matcha. Our matcha contains 50-100% more L-Theanine than most other matcha on the market today! Our Black Label Matcha is upwards of 4,000mg. Well, this is the reason why many people who have tried our organic matcha were so surprised that organic matcha can taste so sweet, a solid proof of high L-Theanine content!
Knowing the Matcha Farm and Farmer:
How many matcha companies have a direct relationship with their matcha farmer? Here at Got Matcha we not only know our farmers name but have that direct access to our farmer and his amazing team. What consumers don’t realize is that the quality of matcha depends greatly on the farmer's experience, especially with soil management.
Matcha grown in other countries such as China and Korea can be toxic because matcha absorbs everything from the soil including toxins and pollutants used in non-organic matcha farms. It takes a very skilled farmer to know how to grow the best matcha crops without using insecticides or chemicals while creating a superiorly strong matcha plant!
Not only does the soil need to organic and from Japan, the soil quality is best when grown in organic volcanic soil, found in a special area in Kagoshima. Plus the Nutrient profile is even richer.
A common practice for many matcha distributors is to buy matcha from many sources, combine it and sell it. There is no standardization or quality control on the matcha, and what ends up is a hog-pog of green tea leaf matcha. This is the number one practice being done today.
Harvests and Matcha Lab Testing Analysis!
Because no matcha leaf, soil, farmer or crop is the same, one of the most important things a consumer should know is whether or not their matcha is being tested for not only every nutrient including L-Theanine, but also neuro-toxins such as lead and arsenic. Every batch of matcha that is harvested for Got Matcha has been tested and we can assure you that toxins such as lead are not even detectable, which is unfortunately not the case with so many matcha brands on the market! Many matcha manufacturers don’t send their matcha products for lab testing because tests fees are very high.
Most websites will not state the actual grade of matcha they sell nor the grade from which the analysis was tested on. This is not too difficult to understand. You see, L-Theanine is highest in content in tea leaves harvested in Spring, which is the first harvest. Our Ceremonial grade matcha is made from these such first harvest leaves.
We have seen an increase in low quality matcha products in the market, which is sad. It all started with those sellers who started selling cheaper matcha and getting consumers to think that all matcha are the same so why pay more? In order to meet this low-price requirements, manufacturers either have to sell their matcha with very little profit or find a substitute. Substitutes are often regular Japanese green tea leaves, not matcha, or they are selling “food grade” matcha, which is the most common matcha on the market today and which is commonly passed off as ceremonial matcha.
Color/Taste is Key to quality
Good quality matcha should be Vivid electric green rather than pale green or yellow. taste sweet and almost creamy rather than bitter and dry…Bitterness means lower L-Theanine content. The lower the quality of leaves used, the more bitter and astringent the matcha will be. Not to mention the bad color, too.
Shade Grown Means Ceremonial
Shade growing is crucial to Matcha and every true matcha brand knows that matcha can only truly be called matcha if it has been shade grown. What does that mean? Matcha can truly only be considered matcha if it has been shade grown for at least 3-4 weeks, which is the process where the nutrients, antioxidants, color, flavor and potency becomes richer and more potent.
The definition of Ceremonial Grade Matcha in the Japanese tea industry states that it MUST be made with shaded, first harvest tea leaves. We see so many matcha products with the name 'Ceremonial Premium Matcha' but the content contains culinary (a lower cooking grade containing no L-Theanine) grade matcha. This is so because it is the only way many companies can make more profit.
Over-harvested matcha crops are more diluted in nutrients, flavor profile and every other component that makes up matcha. Some companies harvest a crop 6-8 times per year while our tea farm harvest only 1-2 times per year.
Fresh ground or milled
Matcha looses potency if it is ground right after harvesting and then sits in storage for months. Got Matcha’s matcha is ground to order and rather than storing in aluminum tins or bags, like many companies, our matcha is ground fresh and then filled and sent to our customers!
100% organic is key.
This is crucial! Matcha should only be grown in organic soil in Japan. ***And only Japan due to the highly toxic content of the soil in most other Asian countries. I always say that food is only as nutritious as the soil it is grown in, and that is very true with matcha! Matcha absorbs all of the amazing health properties and antioxidants from a soil that is organic, tended properly and given the utmost care and focus!
Organic Japanese volcanic soil is premium and the BEST. Our Matcha is tested with every batch for not only the nutrition profile including the high Theanine content, but also tested for any potential neuro-toxins such as lead, which is untraceable. Companies don’t tell you what their matcha does or doesn’t contain and at Got Matcha we can back up our claims with regular testing that toxins such as lead are not even detectable in our matcha, the L-Theanine content is off the charts!
Aged Like Fine Wine
Matcha is at its best in flavor, potency, freshness and shelf-life stability, when aged just like wine. All tea companies outside Japan claim that the matcha they are selling is from the current year’s harvest, just to create the image that their matcha is fresh. With matcha, what determines how potent and fresh it is depends on how the raw materials are stored while aging and when the matcha is milled. Our matcha is stored in vacuum-packed bags in a refrigerated storage room with a controlled temperate of below 10 degrees celsius, for a minimum of 1 year and then milled fresh to order. If the entire crop of matcha is dried and then milled, or ground, there is no way to vacuum pack the matcha and age the tea properly.
Freshness is not based on one year of proper storing and aging but also very importantly, the timing of milling. Our matcha is only removed from the refrigerated aging process upon order and shipped immediately in special air-tight bags. Otherwise, if it is milled immediately and then stored it loses freshness, potency and the ability to age like a fine wine. Aged matcha has the most fresh delicious flavor unique to this process.
Bottom line is very few tea companies properly age their matcha because it takes much longer and is more costly for them to produce. This is one reason that buying matcha from our farm in Kirishima, costs more to purchase. Quality is superior and the shelf life is extended through this aging and milling process!