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  • Writer's pictureIsabella Russo

Matcha Hater to Loving Addict: Where the World Went Wrong 

Updated: Feb 19

The matcha latte has taken over. While the tea made of shaded and young green tea leaves has been around since the seventh-century Tang Dynasty (that's a really long time ago), it has only recently become increasingly popular in the United States. Its growth can be attributed to our one and only Gwenyth Paltrow who in 2015 posted about a matcha latte on Instagram. Its aesthetic look and health benefits only proved to be a further catalyst for its growth. Today, the United States matcha market is projected to exceed a value of two billion American dollars by 2025. So, ready or not, this milky green drink is in your local area and being sold to you at grossly high prices. Before you scream and hide with distressed fear, please listen to my tale; I was once like you. 

(Jeanine Donofrio)

I hated matcha. I thought it was completely and totally abysmal. I tried long and hard to love it but I found myself with no love to give to a drink so foul and offensive. I drank matcha lattes from Starbucks and small cafes, and I even tried to make my own. I tried it hot and iced. I tried it flavored and foamed. No matter the circumstance, I thought it tasted like rotting organic matter that had been marinating in cream for one day too long. I was defeated. I thought I would never join in the matcha fun until a friend was sipping on matcha and asked me if I wanted to try some. After I declined, she asked why. After I revealed my dirty-matcha-hater secret to her she said (and as I am now telling you) “That's what I thought for a long time too but this is different just try it.” And because I am apparently extremely susceptible to peer pressure, I reluctantly gave it a try. Thank the mighty matcha makers that I am easily influenced because it was a semi-life changing sip. 

The difference between her cup of matcha and mine? Water. I had, for my whole life, been ordering matcha lattes, made with milk, because they were the “thing.” Everyone loves matcha lattes so that's what I got. The milk gave it (in my opinion) a rotting taste. The earthy flavors of matcha powder and the richness of milk don't mix well (again, in my opinion). My friend's matcha was simple, but it worked. After a very healing experience, I became a matcha fan (not to be confused with a matcha latte fan; those are still nasty). I now stick to the basics and only drink my matcha the way the seventh-century Chinese Tang Dynasty royalty sipped on it. Water is the way. 


After realizing the original was significantly better I couldn't fathom how the world would deviate from a perfectly blissful path. The answer? Capitalism and a Canadian.

In 2004, a tea house in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada wanted to be the next Starbucks and added milk to teas it had no business being in. Because the milk dulled the earthy bitter flavor of the tea, it apparently made the matcha more palatable for the North American population. So the matcha latte was born. I believe this is where the world went wrong.

So, I urge you to keep it simple, stick to the basics, trust the Chinese, and drink your matcha with water (and avoid Canadian capitalist ventures).   

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Angela Luna McDonald
Angela Luna McDonald
Feb 20

are you one of the people who were to say matcha tastes like grass?


Ava Harris
Ava Harris
Feb 19

this is so real izzy

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