2011/08/22

Everyday Tea - Bancha -

Japanese tea has a various kind of tea including Matcha, Gyokuro, Sencha, Hojicha, Gemmaicha, Bancha, and newcomer Wakocha etc.

Many may try some of them. Have you tried “Bancha” before? Maybe, you haven’t, because Bancha is often translated as “coarse tea”, so it doesn’t sound tasty, does it?

How should it be translated, then? “Cha” means tea in Japanese.
What about “Ban”?
There are various viewpoints about the origin of its name including:
1) “Ban” means “daily”. So, Bancha refers to daily tea. ( In Kyoto, daily home cooking is often called “O-banzai”)
2) The tea is made from tea leaves after being plucked for Shincha (new tea) or summer-flush tea. In other words, Bancha is made from bangai (special case) tea leaves. Its name comes from the meaning of “special case” 
                                                                                      ….. etc.

Some Bancha are put on the market nowadays, but it originally had been consumed only at home or the local area. So, Bancha does vary from region to region. Interestingly, even Hojicha and Gemmaicha are regarded as Bancha at some areas.



Yes, Bancha is coarse tea, but can be also said “everyday tea” or “local tea”. In general, this tea has more catechin and less caffeine, so as you can see from its name, Bancha is good to take a gulp on a daily-basis.


*This is the post about one of Bancha called "Goishi-cha". Check it out!
http://japaneseteastory.blogspot.com/2011/05/goishi-cha.html