Macha Oi Ocha

Brand: Italian Wysteria Garden

Cost: 129 yen

Found At: Mini Stop

You know those people who are almost too easygoing? So relaxed that they make your life more stressful. They are so perfectly content to go with the flow that they are inevitably in the way. You cannot put any decision to them because doing so is like screaming into the void: they will only ever respond with, “I’m happy with whatever.” In the end, you find yourself more irritated and anxious at the indecision than you ever would have been at a decision.

That is what this tea is like. This autumn blend of Uji matcha is almost too mild. When I think of matcha, I think of the rich, bitter, fragrant tea that comes from whipping green tea powder into a thick, foamy, opaque liquid. It’s strong and powerful and sometimes almost unpleasant. This bottle of Oi Ocha is nothing like my image of green tea. Instead, it is light and inoffensive and very easy on the taste buds – a great drink for the end of the summer as the days get longer. Yet, I couldn’t help but feel anxious about this tea. I like my tea to be bitter and strong, not light and mild. I want tea with some conviction, a tea that states unequivocally – in the language tannins – that it is tea. I am never easy around things that are uncertainly what they claim to be. And not to mention that a tea without bitterness has lost that vital safeguard that prevents me from downing 600 ml over the course of 15 minutes. While this tea may not have had the flavor of tea, it certainly had the caffeine – and it was a full 7 hours before my nerves had de-jittered.

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