When you hear folks mention Japanese tea it invariably means that they are talking about green tea. That is just scratching the surface because there are many types of green tea out there; gyokuro, sencha, macha, genmaicha, bancha, and more! To brew green tea correctly water temperature is of the utmost importance. When steeping you should change the temperature depending on the kind of green tea you are drinking but here are the basics!
1. Cool boiling water in a kyusu tea pot or tea cups to the proper temperature.
2. Put green tea leaves in an empty kyushu tea pot.
3. Pour hot water over tea leaves.
4. Cover the lid and wait for a while before serving.
5. Serve green tea into individual yunomi (no handle) tea cups.
When serving green tea one must make sure not to leave any tea (liquid) in the bottom of the tea pot.
6. Keep in mind that it is also possible to brew green tea a few times using the same tea leaves.
1. When brewing sencha green tea, use 160F degree hot water and brew about one minute in a tea pot.
2. To brew gyokuro green tea, use 110F degree hot water and brew about two minutes.
3. To brew hojicha, genmaicha, and bancha, use boiling water and brew just 15-20 seconds.
4. To drink macha green tea, shift 1 tsp of macha green tea powder in a large tea cup and add 1/4 cup of 160F degree hot water in it, then stir quickly with a bamboo tea whisk.
5. Pouring hot sencha green tea over some ice in a cup makes iced green tea.
Michael Ganzeveld writes for the site GreenTeaPhD.com.