Sencha vs Bancha vs Hojicha: Japanese Green Tea
When it comes to Japanese green tea, the most consumed in Japan is “Sencha (煎茶)”. Sencha generally uses first flush tea leaves from the same tree as the “Bancha (番茶)” grade.
On the other hand, “Hojicha (ほうじ茶)” is made from Bancha or Sencha, so these three types of tea are closely related.
Sencha vs. Bancha vs. Hojicha
While Sencha is the quintessential “Ryokucha (緑茶)“, it is said that the origin of the name Bancha derives from “Bangai Cha (番外茶)” loosely meaning “low-grade tea”.
Sencha is non-fermented tea made from first flush tea leaves that have been steamed, rolled, and dried. It has a refreshing aroma and leaves a rich aftertaste.
Although when brewed with boiling water, the tea tends to have an astringent taste, when using warm water, mellowness stands out.
Bancha comes in various types and forms, as seen on the website of JA Shizuoka City.
But it usually uses low-grade tea leaves plucked later than Sencha.
Hojicha is a type of Ryokucha made from Bancha/Sencha roasted at 150°-200° C.
As heated at high temperatures, the caffeine/catechin content of the tea is low, and the taste is savory, easy to drink.