Matcha Sweets You Should Try

Having been enjoyed in the Japanese tea ceremony for centuries, matcha green tea is something that helps transport Japanese people to a tranquil place and brings a pureness of mind with just a sip. In modern times, matcha is enjoyed more casually, and it fi nally came to Western culture. In New York, we see more and more restaurants and cafes serving matcha today and using matcha in sweets and desserts. Here are selected sweets that incorporate the beautiful features of matcha green tea.

Matcha Tira “Masu” $16

Cha-An Teahouse

Cha-An has served matcha sweets since its inception 14 years ago. Its latest creation is Matcha Tira “Masu,” tiramisu served in a traditional “masu” wooden square cup. It simply layers matcha sponge cake and creamy mascarpone cheese filling dusted with a generous amount (about 3 bowls worth of matcha) of ceremony-quality matcha green tea powder. Some might be scared of trying the powder due its bitterness, but the type used in this dessert is so high quality that you can enjoy its fresh and pleasant aroma and even taste its sweetness. All the components of flavor, aroma, and texture are intricately blended to create this elegant dessert. To fully enjoy Cha-An’s tour de force, try it with their Matcha Latte that’s been popular for more than a decade.

230 E. 9th St., 2nd Fl., New York, NY 10003 | www.chaanteahouse.com

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Matcha Mousse $3.50

ennju

This mousse is sweet and fluffy on your palate, but the best feature of this airy light mousse is a distinct bitterness from the matcha green tea. Right after you put it in your mouth, you will enjoy a sensation of bitterness. It is truly a dessert for adults. It is made for take-out, so you can garnish with whatever you like to your taste at home.

20 E. 17th St., New York, NY 10003 | www.ennju.com

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Green Tea Crunch $9 (1 box)

Patisserie Tomoko

This is crusty green tea short bread bits coated with green tea white chocolate. The short bread part has a soft crunch while keeping its airiness. The coating has a substantial matcha green tea kick to produce a blissful balance. This simple yet creative snack highlights the beauty of green tea. Patisserie Tomoko carries other green tea sweets such as cheesecake, cookies, crème brulee, mille crepe, tiramisu, mochi and dacquoise.

568 Union Ave., Brooklyn, NY 11211 | www.patisserietomoko.com

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Fukuwatashi (Matcha flavor) $3.70

Minamoto Kitchoan

Fukuwatashi, a wavy-shaped cookie waffle sandwich stuffed with light cream, is one of the best selling items at this longstanding wagashi (traditional Japanese confectionery) specialty store. Its Matcha Green Tea version, with matcha being used for both the waffles and cream, has anelegant green tea flavor with a very reserved sweetness and pleasant aroma. A touch of bitterness remains as a mild aftertaste. It can be perfectly paired with brewed green tea, as well as black tea and coffee.

509 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10022 | www.kitchoan.com

Matcha Passion Fruit Mousse Cake $7.25

Dominique Ansel Bakery

Bitter matcha green tea and sour passion fruit create an elegant harmony in this rich and smooth mousse. Features from these ingredients are usually in opposition to each other, yet in this cake their subtle incorporation creates a masterful balance. If you are not familiar with matcha green tea sweets, this is the perfect introductory one to understand the power of matcha.

189 Spring St., New York, NY 10012 | www.dominiqueansel.com

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Green Tea Mille Crepes $90 (9-inch whole)/$9 (piece)

Lady M Cake Boutique

The hugely popular Lady M’s Mille Crepes have a matcha version as well. High quality matcha green tea powder is used in all of the components of the crepes, cream and topping, producing an aromatic masterpiece. Gently put a dessert spoon into the delicate piece made of 20 layers of crepes and light cream, scoop a spoonful, and appreciate the blissful harmony unfolding in your mouth.

36 W. 40th St., New York, NY 10018 | www.ladym.com

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Matcha White Chocolate Bark $7

Chalait

The matcha green tea concept café CHALAIT is serious about presenting the beauty of matcha via aspects such as taste, nutritional value, and fun. Their Matcha White Chocolate Bark embraces nutritious nuts and dried fruit, featuring pistachio nuts, almonds, black chia seeds, goji berries and pink salt with mildly sweet and airy light matcha white chocolate. Its refreshing matcha flavor and hint of bitterness are sophisticatedly highlighted via this exquisite combination of ingredients. Nuts and seeds change seasonally.

299 West Houston St., New York, NY 10014 | www.chalait.com

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Matcha Lava Cookies $3.95

Spot Dessert Bar

A collision of strong flavors can sometimes be addictive. This is a cookie version of the popular desserterie’s signature sweet, Chocolate Green Tea Lava Cake. Once you crack the chocolate cookie into half or bite into it, the green tea ganache erupts and flows into your mouth. Once the flavors from the dark chocolate and matcha green tea melt, it creates a decadent flavor no one can resist.

13 St. Marks Pl., New York, NY 10003 | www.spotdessertbar.com

What is Matcha?

Matcha is powdered green tea, but it’s not powder from regular green tea that you drink by
brewing. The green tea leaves used for matcha are grown while being covered to prevent the green tea plants from being exposed to strong, direct sunlight. By growing matcha with such special care, it is said to have more umami components as a result. And only the first crop will become matcha, unlike with regular green tea.

Harvested tea leaves for matcha are simply steamed and dried, unlike regular green tea leaves that are steamed and dried while kneading. The dried matcha green tea is then stone- ground slowly. If ground at a faster speed the grinder heats up, ultimately changing the flavor of the matcha. Therefore, slow-grinding is very important in order to retain the tea’s fresh flavor.

Matcha green tea has differences in taste depending on production origin, how it’s processed, how finely it’s pulverized, and some other factors. The highest quality matcha green tea used in the tea ceremony has a bright green color, as well as a refreshing aroma and sweetness.

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