Monday, June 14, 2010

Matcha Box 06-12-2010


Location: 33 Crosby St.
Time: 4pm
People: RB and myself

Feelings: I needed to check out Matcha Box, a June only pop-up cafe in Soho, as soon as I had a weekend available. The architect behind this store is Matchasource, and they have all things matcha from matcha latte to matcha Marshmallow Munchy (Rice Krispies Treat).

As a child growing up in Osaka, I grew up sipping real matcha from Kyoto, the mecca of matcha and green tea located about 30 minutes away. The bitter and frothy flavor is always intense, and few seconds later, the refreshing flavor lingers in the mouth. You would bite into a subtly sweet red bean dessert for a new flavor experience, and again, you would sip the matcha to refresh your palate. Sip, Savor and Repeat. This brings a true tranquility to not only my mouth but also my entire body and energy level. If you see people enjoying the real Matcha in Kyoto, you see clarity in their eyes and satisfaction on their lips. This is more than just tea.

Since we can't afford to visit Kyoto every time we are stressed out, RB and I usually head out to Cha-An for a little tea time. At Matcha Box, RB and I shared iced matcha tea, matcha shortbread cookies and wagashi (About $10 total). Unfortunately, this was much more toned down, New York friendly version of real matcha. The iced matcha tea tasted more like green colored iced water, and the dessert did not have enough bitter flavor of matcha. For matcha beginners, however, this would be a great introduction since they tend to feel real matcha flavor is too bitter and intense.

Our matcha craving unsatisfied, we picked up Matcha bread at Panya, a Japanese bakery in the East Village. It was interesting that the bread had more matcha flavor than the tea!

If you have never tried matcha before or prefer the mild matcha flavor, I would recommend trying this pop-up store. It is cute, but if you are from Kyoto region and craving that authentic bitter flavor, stay in your favorite Japanese cafes and save yourself the $10.

5 comments:

munchimonster said...

Awww, it's so sad to hear that Matcha Box is disappointing... I've been wanting to try it out since I'm absolutely in love with everything green tea!! I definitely love Panya's matcha cookies, and I'm take it from your comment that Panya's matcha goods are better?

Yosh O. said...

You should def try matcha box for "introduction to matcha" aspect, but it is a bit pricey there. I like Panya and Cha-An better though. (I like panya's matcha cookies too!!)

I love your blog!

Jessica said...

Hello, dear Ramen and Friends,

I am so sorry that you are disappointed about the Matcha flavor at the Match Box. I am the pastry chef who made the sweets for the store.

When I design the menu, it was ment to show MILD flavor of Matcha, since most of the people in US are not so familiar with the beautifulness of the bitter Matcha.

Thank you for your lovely post. I certainly enjoy reading them!

Jessica said...

Hello, dear Ramen and Friends,

I am so sorry that you are disappointed about the Matcha flavor at the Match Box. I am the pastry chef who made the sweets for the store.

When I design the menu, it was ment to show MILD flavor of Matcha, since most of the people in US are not so familiar with the beautifulness of the bitter Matcha.

Thank you for your lovely post. I certainly enjoy reading them!

Yosh O. said...

Hello Jessica,

Thank you for reading our blog! I definitely understand the point of introducing the matcha. Your wagashi was delicious.