Welcome to Japan! The first thing you might want to get just after arriving Japan must be… something to drink to refresh your thirstiness.
But what should I drink? There are many kinds of pet bottle drink on the shelf in convenience stores, supermarkets, and vending machine. But which one should I try? Is the taste really all right? Where ever we go abroad, this is a vital question for everyone around the world for sure.
Don’t worry. Just have your 1 minute to read this article and let’s get to know about it.
This article will guide you to get to know about the 2 popular pet bottle Japanese green tea. This time, we will feature only 2 brands, in order to have a deep dive of understanding.
By the way, what is your “soul drink” in your country and for yourself? Sparkling water? Coffee? Black tea? Coke? Of course in Japan, there are many kinds of choices. But if the question comes as the “soul drink” for Japanese, the answer would be “Japanese green tea”. To prove it, if you go to a convenience store, supermarket and see a vending machine, you might be surprised that there are many kinds of Japanese green tea.
“Isn’t green tea all the same?” The answer for Japanese is “NO. Definitely NO.” Every brand has different taste, flavor, and texture, and even history.
So, let’s take a look of 2 major Japanese pet bottle green teas.
1. OI OCHA (ITOEN)
Oi Ocha is the “authority” in the world of Japanese pet bottle green tea. It is sold by Itoen. It is actually interesting that “Oi Ocha” means “Hey, tea” in Japanese. The naming is something very direct and general, but this product is too common for Japanese, so we recognize this as a unique name of the brand. We can say, Oi Ocha is a kind of benchmark of Japanese green tea.
This Oi Ocha uses only domestic Japanese tea leaves for 100%. It is very highly fragrant. It is mellow and has a deep taste of green tea. It has no additive of perfumery and adjustment of the task. It has a very pure texture.
Commitment / Particular about making process
This Oi Ocha has 3 particular about making process.
- Freshness of leaf: Use exclusive leaf only for Oi Ocha and shorten the production timing as half.
- Freshness of extraction: Before extraction, warm the leaf and enrich the smell, then extract it.
- Freshness of packing: Minimize the amount of oxygen as 0.0003% to prevent the change of taste by oxidation.
By the way, based on author’s experience, the distribution of Oi Ocha seems strong at suburb. If you get a chance to have a trip not only Tokyo but also to other regions, just try to take a look. You might recognize it.
Actually, the package of the picture is “autumn version” with autumn leaves. Now you know that Japanese even feel the seasons with tea. Tea is not “just” a tea.
2. AYATAKA (Coca-Cola)
If we call “Oi Ocha” as a benchmark of Japanese green tea, “Ayataka” is a kind of challenger. It is interesting that actually even the Coca-Cola Company is making green tea. This reflects how big the green tea market in Japan is!
Relatively, Ayataka is a new brand of green tea. Nonetheless, it already has established a very strong brand image (That’s the way of Coca-Cola marketing). Even Japanese might not have an image that Ayataka is sold by Coca-Cola, as they don’t show the company’s image that much. They show the image as a genuine, pure Japanese product. And indeed, it is. The catch copy is “the taste is like poured from teapot.”
Ayataka is newly made aiming for providing Japanese green tea, which is totally new for the category of the “pet bottle” green tea. It has the unfiltered, unrefined texture. Oi Ocha has a very clear texture, but compared to that, this Ayataka has unfiltered texture. It is because they want make green tea that tastes like the one directly poured from a teapot.
They collaborate with a historical long-established tea store in Kyoto, which name is “Kanbayashi Shyunsho Honten”. This tea store was founded 450 years ago. “Kanbayashi Shyunsho Honten” was founded in Muromachi times, and the authority of Uji tea. Even the ancient men of power like Hideyoshi Toyotomi, Ieyasu Tokugawa loved this tea store.
Commitment / Particular about making process
Ayataka has 3 particular about making process.
The special tea mister corrects the selected tea leafs all over from Japan. They mix it and make the best way recipe based on their experience.
- Ayataka has an original process to keep the unfiltered texture. They make and blend Maccha and make it as the teapot poured tea.
- The only leaves, which were passed the strict inspection are used. Color, glossiness, fragrance of the leaf and taste itself is strictly checked.
So, how do you feel like, after getting to know about 2 major Japanese green teas?
Tea is not just a tea, but it is the history, culture, philosophy of Japan itself, isn’t it?
Enjoy your daily tea time!