Sencha Green Tea Benefits
Brewing Hot or Iced

There are two ways to brew the Japanese sencha green tea - hot or iced. How you brew will affect the health benefits.

Japan loves green tea, and sencha is the most popular beverage in the country.

It is a loose-leaf green tea that has been lightly steamed and rolled. In Japan, it is an all-purpose beverage, enjoyed as hot tea when there is a chill in the air and as iced tea during the heat of summer.

Chinese Versus Japanese

If you are only familiar with Chinese green tea, sencha may come as a surprise. Chinese green tea is usually a light yellow color, while sencha is a dark emerald.

The leaves appear smaller than Chinese leaves, due to the rolling and drying process they undergo after they are steamed.

However, Chinese green tea is likely to have more tea buds (i.e. the first two leaves), as the highest grade Japanese tea is very expensive and not easily accessible.

Compared to Chinese-style green teas, sencha often has a little more bitterness to it.

When high-quality sencha green tea is brewed correctly, this bitterness is balanced by rich flavors of grass, green vegetables or even seaweed.


If you are brewing a high grade, you may want to consider getting a Japanese tea pot (kyusu) and cups (yunomi).

How to Make Hot Sencha

Water Temperature

Heat your water to boiling point, then let the water cool in a cup.

Boiling water is especially relevant if your tap water supply has been chlorinated. You want to boil to remove any smell of the chlorine.

Cooling is important. Never use boiling water for sencha.

A thermometer is helpful here. If you haven't got one, the appearance of the steam may give you some useful clues.

High Grade:

Brew the tea at about 160 Fahrenheit or 70 degree Celsius.

Observe the steam rising in a curly way.


Brew the tea at about 185 Fahrenheit or 85 degree Celsius.

Observe the steam rising strongly.

Leaf Amount and Infusion Time

This is not exact science, your best bet is to read the package instruction.

Generally speaking, higher grade sencha can withstand higher concentration and longer infusion time (at lower temperature).

High Grade:

Try 1 gram of leaves for 1 ounce of water (about 30 milliliters), infused for 2 minutes the first time, then 30 seconds afterwards.


Try 1 gram of leaves for 1.5 ounce of water (about 45 milliliters), infused for 1 minute the first time, then 30 seconds afterwards.

How to Make Iced Sencha

There are three different ways to make iced sencha green tea.

You can brew hot sencha as described above, but using twice as much tea for the same amount of water. Then, simply pour it over ice to cool.

The other two options for iced sencha would be brewing it in cold water and brewing it in ice. This method gives the best flavor.

The steps are simple:

Step 1:

Measure out 2 teaspoons of tea per cup into your tea pot. Fill with either ice or cold water.

Step 2:

If brewing in cold water, place the tea pot in your refrigerator for at least two hours. If you are brewing in ice, leave it on your kitchen counter until the ice melts.

Health Benefits

One thing you should be aware of when you brew iced sencha is that it affects the chemical composition of the beverage.

Cold-brewed tea will have fewer of the important antioxidants like EGCG that give sencha green tea its powerful health benefits.

Cold-brewed tea will also have very little caffeine, which is great if you need to sleep but could be a disadvantage if you were looking for an energy boost.

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Hibiki-an. Iced Sencha.

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