August 2015 - Mugicha from Hyogo

It's summer time in Japan! That means humidity and warmth: way way way too much of both. To survive in this environment Japanese people rely on a pecular drink called Mugicha... so here is our August 2015 pick: Mugicha (麦茶) from Hyogo (兵庫).

Mugicha: roasted barley

What is Mugicha?

Mugicha is a roasted barley tea. As a consequence it is completely caffeine-free so Japanese people do not hesitate to drink as much of it as they need to fight off the heat. In Japan it is almost always served cold, as a refreshing beverage, but roasted barley teas are also served mild or warm in China and Korea.

Mugicha is also a very popular drink for babies* and kids, due to its antioxidant, antibacterial and anticoagulant properties: my own daughter has been drinking it virtually since she is born, long before she could walk or talk, and she will still pick it over a soda any day... Probably much better for her health!

*Please be aware that there are Mugicha specifically prepared for babies: the one we shipped is not appropriate for newborns.

A cold glass of Mugicha

How to prepare Mugicha?

Mugicha is very easy to prepare: simply put one tea bag (10g) in a one liter (34oz) bottle/container of water and leave it in the fridge for one to two hours. You can then discard the tea bag, and keep the mugicha in the fridge to drink whenever you want.

Field of barley

Back to green tea

Not everybody likes Mugicha. It certainly took me some time to get used to it, but it is now my go-to drink for summer. It is the typical Japanese summer infusion so I wanted to share it with all Tomotcha subscribers.

But don't worry, we will be back to the realm of green tea next month with a shipment of the highest grade kind... Gyokuro (玉露)!